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Feb 14, 2005, 08.19 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Zenotech clones Genentech's cancer drug

Hyderabad based Zenotech Labs has cloned Genetech's blockbuster, Rituxan.

Researchers at Hyderabad based Zenotech Labs have cloned a billion dollar blockbuster Rituxan, a Genentech product for Non-Hodgkins lymphoma, a deadly form of blood cancer.

The product has already recieved the drug controller's nod for toxicity studies. Each vial of this complex biotech drug cost around Rs 60,000 per vial and once through, it will be sold by Zenotech at one third that price.

Jayaram Chigurupati, MD, Zenotech Labs said, "It's a very expensive drug for Non-Hodgkins lymphoma. We should be able to launch it by next year, at one- third the price placed by the inventor."

That's is not all, the company is already in discussions with an European drug giant to licence out the product.

Chigurupati said, "We have been in talks with a big European company with a generic arm with regards to giving our biologicals to them."

Going by the quality of researchers at Zenotech and the research product in the pipeline of Zenotech Labs, it could be the beginning of a strong future. But what really counts are the tedious regulatory processes involved in the regulatory approvals for biotech drugs.

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