Cipla collaborates with CSIR, IICT, ICMR to develop treatment for COVID-19

Published on 7 August, 2020 / Published by Pharmabiz

Cipla has collaborated with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT), Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the Union ministry of health to develop medications for the treatment of COVID-19, said company's chairman YK Hamied in an annual report for 2019-20. "Through our strategic global partnerships, we offer a wide range of drugs in our portfolio giving relief and improving treatment access. This is especially true with the vital lifesaving drugs like remdesivir, favipiravir and tocilizumab," added Hamied. The company is also ramping up manufacturing of drugs for chronic ailments such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), among others, he said. Hamied noted that Cipla's philosophy of self-reliance and self-sufficiency and its pledge to provide universal access to affordable medicines has become even more critical today. The foundation and backbone of the pharma industry is the availability and manufacturing of active pharmaceutical ingredients known as APIs, he said.

"The government, along with our industry, must set up its priorities on availability of essential drugs and give suitable incentives to the industry to boost development," Hamied said. Samina Hamied, executive vice-chairperson, said, "Cipla Foundation also partnered with several hospitals in Mumbai to strengthen the state’s healthcare infrastructure to tackle the pandemic. Towards this, the Foundation has supported setting-up of a COVID-19 advanced testing laboratory at JJ Hospital as well as Maharashtra’s only isolation ward for paediatric patients at the BJ Wadia Hospital for Children." Cipla in collaboration with the Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance (IPA) also helped define a standard safety protocol across the industry to ensure safety of employees and uninterrupted supply of critical drugs to the nation, stated Samina Hamied

Cipla has many decades of expertise in manufacturing of bulk APIs and therefore it looks forward to extending its whole-hearted support to the government in this initiative, Hamied noted. "In 2001, in the global fight against the HIV/AIDS pandemic, Cipla developed the world’s first triple anti-retroviral drug combination, Triomune and offered it at below US$1 per day as against the then prevailing international pricing of US$ 12,000-US$ 15,000 per year,” he added. At the end of 2019, out of 38 million people living with HIV/AIDS globally, 25.4 million people (67 per cent) have had access to antiretroviral therapy (ART) and nearly two-thirds of the world's antiretroviral drugs are supplied from India, added Hamied.

This article was originally published on Pharmabiz