Cuba inches closer to rolling out its vaccines soberana and Abdala

CUBA – The Caribbean island nation of 11 million people, which has been under a strict United States (US) trade embargo for decades, is in process of developing five experimental shots, including Soberana 02 and Abdala, which reached final-stage trials last month. With both Soberana and Abdala in stage-three clinical trials, Cuba is racing towards potentially becoming the first country in Latin America to develop its own shot against the coronavirus. The names of the vaccines reveal much about how Cuba sees its national effort, Soberana translates as “sovereign”, while…

Read More

Sun Pharma announces settlement of patent litigation with Celgene in US

USA – Sun Pharmaceutical Industries today announced settlement of patent litigation for generic Revlimid (lenalidomide) in the US. Lenalidomide, sold under the trade name Revlimid among others, is a medication used to treat multiple myeloma (MM) and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), cancer forms that fall under leukemia. Multiple myeloma is a relatively uncommon cancer. In the United States, the lifetime risk of getting multiple myeloma is 1 in 132 (0.76%). The American Cancer Society’s estimates for multiple myeloma in the United States for 2021 are, About 34,920 new cases will be…

Read More

South Africa, Senegal, Rwanda, Nigeria considered as vaccine production hubs-WTO

AFRICA – Africa is working with the European Union and other partners to establish regional vaccine manufacturing hubs in South Africa, Senegal and Rwanda. Nigeria is also under consideration for the program, World Trade Organization (WTO) Director General, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has said. “We have now seen that over-centralization of vaccine production capacity is incompatible with equitable access in a crisis situation,” Okonjo-Iweala said on Monday during a virtual meeting. Regional production hubs, in tandem with open supply chains, will offer a more promising path to preparedness for future health crisis…

Read More

South Africa to host African coronavirus vaccine technology transfer hub

AFRICA – South Africa will host the continent’s first COVID-19 vaccine production facility, a new hub for Messenger RNA coronavirus vaccine technology, WHO has announced. The move comes after the WHO issued an expression of interest in April, to establish COVID-19 mRNA vaccine technology transfer hubs to scale up production and access to COVID vaccines in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO describes the transfer hubs as training facilities, where the technology is established at industrial scale and clinical development performed. Interested manufacturers from LMICs can receive training and…

Read More

Revital Healthcare EPZ Ltd signs indenture with Tanzania to supply medical equipment

KENYA – Revital Healthcare, a medical disposable products manufacturing company in Kilifi Kenya, has received an order to supply 11 million Covid-19 vaccine syringes to Tanzania. Revital Healthcare EPZ is the only manufacturer of the COVID-19 test kits in Africa and one of the 66 manufacturers in the world which is USFDA (United States Food and Drug Administration) certified. This comes amid improved relations between Kenya and Tanzania since President Samia Suluhu took over leadership. According to Revital Healthcare sales and market product development director, Roneek Vora, the Tanzanian market…

Read More

Medtronic launches world’s smallest pacemaker

INDIA – Medtronic private limited, a global leader in medical technology, services, and solutions, has launched Micra AV the world’s first miniature-sized pacemaker. Micra AV is the first pacemaker that can sense atrial activity without a lead or device in the upper chamber of the heart. The new innovation has several additional internal atrial sensing algorithms which detect cardiac movement, allowing the device to adjust pacing in the ventricle to coordinate with the atrium. Micra AV provides Atrioventricular (AV) synchronous pacing therapy to patients with AV block, a type of…

Read More

Zimbabwe sizes up local pharmaceutical manufacture amid rising poverty levels

ZIMBAMBWE – Zimbabwe’s pharmaceutical industry continues to import critical medicines such as anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs) as the sector faces low levels of production despite the country having ability to produce these drugs, a factor towards recessive poverty waning. Giving oral evidence to the Thematic Portfolio Committee on HIV/Aids Monday, Industry Ministry secretary Mavis Sibanda revealed local manufacturers’ production of drugs was only US$31.5 million while US$213 million worth of medicines were imported annually. “The pharmaceutical market size of Zimbabwe is estimated at US$244.5 million while local manufacturers produce only US$31.5…

Read More

Aspen Pharmacare reacts to FDAs directive for a batch of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines to be destroyed

SOUTH AFRICA – Aspen, a global multinational specialty pharmaceutical company, has sqaid in a statement released to the press that they are disappointed to learn specific batches of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine manufactured at  Gqeberha production site and designated for the South African market have to be destroyed due to the Good Manufacturing Practice risk of isolated material in the drug substance supplied to Aspen by Johnson & Johnson from their contract manufacturing partner in the USA, Emergent.  The batches manufactured had been retained in storage awaiting the…

Read More

IFC boosts Vietnam’s personal protective equipment production to respond to COVID-19

VIETNAM – IFC, the global development institution, has started a program that aims to improve personal protective equipment (PPE) producers’ operations and reduce costs by removing unnecessary burdens related to standards and conformity assessments.  As part of the global PPE advisory program supported by the UK Government, the IFC is working with local garment manufacturers in the country through the Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (VITAS) and national labs through the Directorate for Standards, Metrology and Quality of Vietnam (STAMEQ), to improve the capacity of the local firms. IFC’s platform…

Read More

IFC, Proparco, DEG and DFC to support Covid-19 vaccine and pharma manufacturing in Africa

SOUTH AFRICA – The International Finance Corporation (IFC), Proparco, the German Development Finance Institution (DEG) and the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) have announced a partnership to support vaccine manufacturing in Africa, pharmaceutical development so as to accelerate the continent’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Through the partnership, IFC, Proparco, a subsidiary of Agence Française de Développement (AFD Group), DEG and DFC, along with other partners, are exploring potential collaboration with vaccine producers on the continent, including Aspen, among others, to support the continued development of sustainable local vaccine…

Read More