The latest from Indian pharma, including the year-to-year 51.5 percent growth of the pharma market in April, Lilly’s partnership with three generics makers to expand the availability of its arthritis drug baricitinib, Zydus Cadila’s upcoming approval of its COVID-19 vaccine, and the emergency use authorization for a COVID-19 antibody drug cocktail developed by Roche and Regeneron.
Why India’s Covid crisis matters to the whole world
The harrowing scenes from India have shocked the world, as the country struggles with soaring cases of Covid. But the outbreak isn’t just a crisis for India – it’s a crisis for everyone. “The virus doesn’t respect borders, or nationalities, or age, or sex or religion,” says Dr Soumya Swaminathan, the World Health Organization’s chief scientist. “And what’s playing out in India now unfortunately has been played out in other countries.”
India’s pharma market rebounds in April, clocks 51.5 percent sales growth
The domestic pharmaceuticals market has seen a rebound in April, with sales growing 51.5 per cent over last year, thanks to the low base of April 2020 and a pick-up in demand for Covid-19 drugs.
When compared to the domestic sales of April 2019, the growth is around 37 per cent. However, compared to the previous month (March), the growth is 18.4 per cent.
India approves Roche/Regeneron antibody cocktail to treat COVID-19
India has given emergency use authorization for a COVID-19 antibody drug cocktail developed by Roche and Regeneron expanding its arsenal of drugs to battle a massive second wave of infections.
The decision was taken based on data filed with the U.S. regulators and the scientific opinion of a European regulatory panel, Roche’s India distribution partner for the drug, Cipla said.
Indian pharma firms go local seeking to end reliance on China
Indian drug companies are looking to local makers of so-called active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) or trying to make them in-house in a bid to end their reliance on China as ties between the two countries soured after a deadly border clash last June.
Though India is known as the pharmacy of the world for its massive production capacities of both generic drugs and vaccines, China accounted for half of its API needs in 2019 from nearly nothing three decades ago, industry data shows. Executives at India’s Cadila Healthcare, Cipla, Sun Pharmaceutical and Biocon said they were aggressively working on reducing the dependence on the richer rival for raw materials.
Zydus Cadila COVID vaccine expected to hit market by June
With a goal of producing 240 million doses per year, Zydus Cadila’s ZyCoV-D, a second indigenous covid vaccine, is scheduled to reach the market by June, as per a recent report by The Print.
Dr Sharvil Patel, managing director of Zydus Group, informed that the vaccine trial for ZyCoV-D, a plasmid DNA vaccine, is going well. The company intends to submit the data by the end of May and apply for approval in June.
Russia expects India to produce 50 million doses of Sputnik V each month this summer
Russia is expecting India to initially be making 50 million doses of its Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine each month this summer, Kirill Dmitriev, head of Russian RDIF fund, told reporters.
The Russian Direct Investment Fund, which is responsible for marketing the vaccine abroad, has signed deals with six firms in India to produce more than 750 million doses of Sputnik V.
Eli Lilly signs deals to boost supply of COVID-19 treatment in India
Eli Lilly said it had signed licensing agreements with three Indian generic drugmakers to expand the availability of its arthritis drug baricitinib in the country for treating COVID-19 patients.
The agreements will bolster India’s arsenal of drugs to battle its catastrophic second wave of the pandemic, which has led to an acute shortage of coronavirus medicines including remdesivir and tocilizumab.