MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- West Virginia University has launched a research center to conduct human clinical trials on new drugs that are being developed, and its first partner is the generic-drug maker Mylan Inc.
The Clinical and Pharmacological Research Center will recruit volunteers from Morgantown and beyond to participate in the trials, which could lead to partnerships with other companies in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, said WVU Health Sciences Chancellor Christopher Colenda.
"This is an important investment for the economic future of our community," he said.
The venture was created by the WVU Research Corp. and the WVU Health Sciences Center. It already has a contract with Pennsylvania-based Mylan, which has a manufacturing facility in Morgantown.
Mylan officials didn't comment Friday on what kind of drugs the center would test first or when those trials would begin.
Dr. Dorian Williams, the center's interim director, said the health and safety of volunteers is the top priority, and all will be fully informed of the risks they face. Participants are paid, but Williams said those payments are strictly regulated and related to the amount of time and blood draws required.
"Short, two-weekend studies would typically pay around $200-500," he said, "while longer studies that require a lot of returns to the center could pay more."
WVU students may participate, but trials are open to anyone who wants to get involved and who meets the eligibility criteria. While most subjects will come from the Morgantown area, some might travel from farther away. Williams said that likely would depend on the nature of the trial.