Pharmacy Research Network set to roll out

Image: The Pharmacy Research Network, MRINZ.

Following the successful recruitment of patients through a pharmacy network for a Medical Research Institute of New Zealand (MRINZ) cold-sore study, the institute is now set to formally launch its Pharmacy Research Network (PRN) towards the end of the year.

Recognising the need for cost effective, but robust randomised controlled trials in the New Zealand biotech sector, MRINZ has spent the last two years evolving its novel methodology within a 950-person study of cold sores in collaboration with the Bay of Plenty’s Honeylab.

The expansive network of 50 pharmacies, from Kerikeri to Invercargill, provides a unique clinical interface to recruit, enrol, randomise, and dispense investigational products to participants, whilst maintaining central study coordination from the MRINZ in Wellington Hospital.

“The ability to support New Zealand biotech has long been a priority for the MRINZ. Within the network we are finally able to provide the capability to undertake randomised clinical trials to a standard traditionally only available to the pharmaceutical industry,” says Network Director Dr Alex Semprini.

“Being able to confidently choose an evidence-based, over-the-counter treatment is a big step forward for patients and pharmacists alike, who can now make informed decisions.”

The results from the first cold-sore study are eagerly awaited with patient recruitment expected to be completed by the end of the year. Further studies with local New Zealand industry have been confirmed and are in development.

For more information on the network please contact Alex at

Date posted: 22 July 2017

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