Abdul Latif Jameel Health & EQRx announce strategic distributorship of cancer drugs

SAUDI ARABIA – Abdul Latif Jameel Health has announced a collaboration with EQRx to bring two novel and affordable cancer treatments to 1.5 billion people in the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa at a fraction of the cost of existing approaches. Both aumolertinib and sugemalimab have shown promising results in Phase III studies for the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer, and they could offer treatment at a fraction of the cost of current and traditional approaches. EQRx is dedicated to developing new medicines, making them more affordable, and reimagining…

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Cuba revives plan to establish pharmaceutical manufacturing plant in Zimbabwe

ZIMBABWE – Cuba has expressed its readiness to revive its plans to establish a vaccine manufacturing plant in Zimbabwe which had stalled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The plan was mooted with the idea of improving Zimbabwe’s local drug manufacture and supply industry. Cuban Ambassador to Zimbabwe Carmelina Rodriguez said the plant was part of efforts to improve the country’s health delivery capacity. “We have a plan to establish a plant in Zimbabwe for the production of vaccines. That project started before Covid-19 but we stopped because of the pandemic.…

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Bayer, Dr. Reddy’s settle patent row over cancer drug Nexavar

GERMANY – Bayer Healthcare and Amgen subsidiary Onyx Pharmaceuticals have agreed to drop their patent lawsuit against Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories over the proposed generic version of Nexavar. According to a filing in Delaware federal court, the parties agreed to dismiss the case with prejudice, which means it cannot be brought again. Nexavar is used to treat cancers of the liver, kidneys, and thyroid. According to a Bayer report, the drug earned the company more than US$700 million in global sales in fiscal year 2020. According to an Amgen filing with…

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Washington University joins major NIH effort to advance health data science in Africa

AFRICA – Washington University in St. Louis has joined a major international effort to advance data science, catalyze innovation and spur health discoveries across Africa. The program is supported by the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) Common Fund, which will invest nearly US$75 million over five years to fund the Harnessing Data Science for Health Discovery and Innovation in Africa (DS-I Africa) program. Researchers at the School of Medicine are receiving one of 19 grant awards that will support data science research and training activities in Africa. The researchers will…

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FDA approves first therapy for dwarfism

USA – BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc’s once-daily injection for children with the most common type of dwarfism has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, making it the country’s first approved therapy for achondroplasia. BioMarin Pharmaceutical developed the treatment, which is a once-daily injection for children with achondroplasia, a rare genetic disorder that causes dwarfism and can lead to serious medical complications. Patients who received the drug, called Voxzogo, grew 1.6 centimeters more over the course of a year than those who received a placebo in a pivotal clinical…

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FDA OK’s Covid-19 boosters for all adults

USA – The FDA has announced in a press release that it has officially amended its Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for both Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna’s COVID-19 single-shot booster vaccinations to include all adults. Individuals must be 18 or older and at least six months removed from the completion of their primary vaccination series of Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna shots to be eligible. This limit is reduced to two months if they received the Janssen single-shot vaccine. Prior to this announcement, booster vaccinations were only available to people 65 and older, people…

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New study finds Penicillin effective for treatment of pediatric Rheumatic Fever

UGANDA – The findings of a large-scale trial completed in Uganda and published in the New England Journal of Medicine, on November 12, has shown that penicillin, a widely available, low-cost antibiotic is effective in treating acute pediatric rheumatic fever and its recurrence. “Our study found penicillin can prevent progression of latent rheumatic heart disease into more severe, irreversible valve damage that is commonly seen in our hospitals with little or no access to valve surgery,” said chief of Cardiology at the Uganda Heart Institute, Dr Emmy Okello. “This study…

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ASR Africa Initiative formally hands hospital to Nigerian Police in Abuja

NIGERIA – The Abdul Samad Rabiu Africa Initiative (ASR Africa) – brainchild of Abdul Samad Rabiu, Founder/Executive Chairman of BUA Group has donated and handed over a newly built 150-bed hospital to the Nigerian Police in Abuja. The hospital, which is the first donation of its kind to the Nigerian Police, is called the “ASR Africa Police National Reference Hospital, Abuja”, and was developed at a cost of 4billion Naira with funding drawn from the annual US$100million ASR Africa Fund for Social Development and Renewal. Speaking at the physical handover…

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US based healthcare dialogues platform, HealthX, launches in Kenya

KENYA – HealthX, a fully equipped, and virtual medical facility has launched its services in Kenya. The comapny has said it will utilize digital platforms to provide next-generation telemedicine and telemonitoring services, giving all Kenyans access to high-quality healthcare at an affordable cost. Through the integrated telehealth platform, patients will have 24/7 access to qualified and licensed healthcare professionals with extensive experience in primary healthcare and patient management who are permanently employed by HealthX. The company says the services will be offered on a transparent subscription model which is affordable,…

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Zydus Cadila gets USFDA approval to market generic cancer drug in US

USA – Zydus Cadila, a pharmaceutical company, has announced that it has received approval from the US Food and Drug Administration to market Decitabine injection, which is used to treat certain types of cancer, in the United States. According to Zydus Cadila, the company has received final approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) for Decitabine for Injection in the strength of 50 mg/vial single-dose vial. Zydus Pharmaceuticals USA Inc, a subsidiary of the company, has been granted competitive generic therapy (CGT) designation for the product, making it…

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