Bristol Myers Squibb Senior Research Investigator Lucy Hawarden was working from her home office in northwest England one week this past winter, but her eyes were trained on events thousands of miles away. Equipped with an augmented reality headset, Lucy watched the labs and production area of a pharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Asia in real time as it produced clinical trial batches of a new investigational medicine for the company.
In normal times, Lucy would have boarded an international flight to the facility, a contract manufacturing partner supporting the medicine’s development. A key milestone was at hand involving the production of the drug’s pediatric formulation. As “lead formulator” in charge of that dosage form she would have been there to monitor the activities in person. While being on-site wasn’t possible due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, the technology still allowed her to be present.
Lucy was able to remotely view all stages of the clinical manufacture, covering dispensing and blending, granulation, compression and coating, and also give feedback to the team from her home office with the help of new technology.