Onsite at ICON's 120-bed early phase clinical research unit

Since 2008 we have conducted more than 400 Phase 1 studies. Our experienced staff works to safely and efficiently manage our studies for both healthy and conditioned patients.  Every study is different, however most trials require overnight stays and outpatient visits. Our medical facility aims to put our volunteers at ease while working to move medicine forward. A variety of activities and patient areas are offered and meals are provided by an on-site caterer.

The safety of volunteers is our primary concern. All our studies are conducted under internationally agreed guidelines set down by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Each study is reviewed by an Independent Review Board (IRB) who is responsible for ensuring that your safety has been thoroughly considered, that the information provided to you is fair, balanced and accurate and that your rights as a volunteer are maintained.

Our facility

Our medical facility is designed with our subjects in mind: Wi-Fi access, large screen TVs, game rooms, time for working on your computer, reading or relaxing on recliners and couches. A variety of DVDs, books and games are available for in-house stays. Study-specific meals and snacks prepared by an on-site local catering company.  Laundry facilities are available for patients doing long in-house stays. We also have an enclosed, password protected parking lot for your car during overnight stays at our clinic.   

Each subject room is designed to ensure subject safety and comfort at all times.  Rooms are designed to accommodate up 3-5 subjects and are equipped with a bathroom and shower.  Each room also has cable television and subject-controlled heating and air conditioning. Subjects have dedicated lockers and share access to other amenities. 

In addition to comfort, the unit is committed to subject safety.  Every shift at tha clinic has license staff which could be RN, LVN or a Paramedic. Our Physicians make daily rounds and are on site Monday-Friday and weekends as needed. Physicians are also on call on weekends on a rotational basis. In the case of emergency, personnel are well trained to follow emergency protocols and Northeast Baptist Hospital Emergency is approximately 7 minutes from the unit.

The safety of volunteers is our primary concern. All our studies are conducted under internationally agreed guidelines set down by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Each study is reviewed by an Independent Review Board (IRB) who is responsible for ensuring that your safety has been thoroughly considered, that the information provided to you is fair, balanced and accurate and that your rights as a volunteer are maintained.

Our staff

The San Antonio Clinical Research Unit (CRU) staff consists of Medical Doctors (M.D.), Physician Extender (PE), Registered Nurses (RN), Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVN), Registered Pharmacists and Pharm.D., Registered Pharmacy Technicians, certified Medical Technologists (MT), Medical Lab Technicians (MLT), Paramedics, Medical Assistants (MA), Respiratory Therapist and Phlebotomists.  Medical knowledge, experience and background play an important role in the selection of the clinical staff we employ at the unit. 

The CRU promotes ongoing medical and emergency care continuing education by offering on site Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) training by a certified external trainer (as required by CPR guidelines) every two years.  The clinical staff is encouraged to become Advanced Cardiac life Support (ACLS) certified.  Currently, ACLS certified employees are staffed on all unit shifts to ensure emergency care overage 24/7.  Our clinical staff members are also encouraged to maintain continuing education credits per their licensure and/or registration requirements.

Clinical staff members are also encouraged to maintain continuing education credits per their license and/or registration requirements.

San Antonio employs the following dedicated full-time investigators:

Dedicated full time investigators

Cassandra C. Key, M.D.

Senior Medical Director

  • University of Texas Health Science Center (San Antonio, TX)
  • Board Certified, Internal Medicine and Geriatric Medicine
  • 15+ years in medical practice in outpatient clinics, nursing homes, and hospitals with various medical directorships
  • Recognized as “Best Of San Antonio Doctors, 2012” by S.A. Scene magazine
  • 3 years in clinical research
  • 60+ Phase I-III studies as Principal Investigator or Sub-Investigator

Dennis A. Ruff, M.D.

Medical Director

Albany Medical College Union University (Albany, NY)

  • Board Certified, Internal Medicine
  • Clinical Professor - Dept. of Medicine (UTHSC San Antonio, TX) 1989-2004
  • 25+ years in clinical research
  • 475+ Phase I-III Clinical Trials Conducted

Emanuel DeNoia, M.D.

Medical Director

College of Medicine of New Jersey (Newark, NJ)

  • Board Eligible, Internal Medicine
  • 20+ years in clinical research
  • 325+ Phase I-III Clinical Trials Conducted