The cost of clinical trials has approximately doubled over the last decade. There are several reasons for this, but the main ones include more complex regulations, extended trial timelines and higher costs associated with collecting, managing and analysing data. One way of addressing these issues is through the implementation of DLTs, which could provide the basis of a revolutionary new style of clinical trial management by enabling the use of Smart Contracts to automate key processes, ranging from the pre-screening of trial sites and protocol approvals, to patient enrolment and monitoring and site payment.
But, despite the theoretical promise of Smart Contracts, there is – in practice – a key barrier to their use. This is that the Smart Contract for each of these processes may be based on a different DLT. And, until recently, no single Smart Contract could be recognised by, and executed on, different DLTs. Now, though, things have changed. This is because Quant has introduced the concept of the Treaty Contract: a fast, simple mechanism for facilitating the cooperation between Smart Contracts and transactions on different DLTs using Quant’s Overledger Network.
By using a Treaty Contract, the full potential of DLTs can be realised, as different Smart Contracts – each using the most appropriate DLT – can be deployed for each separate process. The Treaty Contract acts as a ‘glue’ to ensure that they all work seamless together. This pioneering Quant technology allows Smart Contracts to be used, for example, to record and track approvals and consent, providing transparency and accountability for all decisions. Also, as specific data can be indexed in Smart Contracts, specific results can be disclosed to a third party without revealing the entire data set, while payments services can be automated. But these are just some of the benefits of Treaty Contracts: a major step forward for distributed ledger technology.