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Viswanath Pilla

Principal Correspondent

Moneycontrol News

Can the single dose Sputnik Light COVID-19 jab be a game changer for India?

BUSINESS

Can the single dose Sputnik Light COVID-19 jab be a game changer for India?

Experts say that a single dose COVID-19 vaccine will help vaccinate twice as many people in the same amount of time, but the long term protection of these vaccines remain unclear

Indian pharma cos welcome patent waivers on COVID vaccines, says tech transfer needed to scale up

BUSINESS

Indian pharma cos welcome patent waivers on COVID vaccines, says tech transfer needed to scale up

Experts say India has a considerable knowledge base on vaccine platforms such as whole virion vaccines (inactivated or live virus), viral vectors and recombinant proteins. Here the patent waiver may not be of much help.

JBCPL launches new division offering therapies targeting kidney diseases

BUSINESS

JBCPL launches new division offering therapies targeting kidney diseases

The new division will focus exclusively on comprehensive renal care ranging from the management of hypertension in Chronic Kidney Disease to End-stage renal disease, the company said.

Roche's COVID-19 antibody cocktail receives Emergency Use Authorisation, Cipla to distribute the drug

BUSINESS

Roche's COVID-19 antibody cocktail receives Emergency Use Authorisation, Cipla to distribute the drug

"The production process for this biologic medicine is very complex and Roche, as one of the largest biologics manufacturers in the world, was selected by its partner Regeneron to expand worldwide production capacity," Roche said.

How Natco Pharma put US drug giant Eli Lilly under pressure for COVID-19 drug through compulsory licensing filing

BUSINESS

How Natco Pharma put US drug giant Eli Lilly under pressure for COVID-19 drug through compulsory licensing filing

The Indian company says it has offered 7% royalty to the US drugmaker for Baricitinib. Natco has filed for compulsory licensing, arguing that Eli Lilly’s small distribution network won’t be able to serve India’s population and the 14-day, Rs 42,000 per-patient treatment regimen for the US drug is too expensive.

Eli Lilly India chief says company in talks with generic firms here on royalty free voluntary licensing of COVID-19 drug Baricitinib

BUSINESS

Eli Lilly India chief says company in talks with generic firms here on royalty free voluntary licensing of COVID-19 drug Baricitinib

They are also working with regulatory authorities and the government of India to donate Lilly’s COVID-19 treatments, including Baricitinib, if authorities deem it appropriate to potentially provide relief

Is pricing, indemnity issues holding Centre, Pfizer from striking deal on vaccine procurement?

BUSINESS

Is pricing, indemnity issues holding Centre, Pfizer from striking deal on vaccine procurement?

Pricing, legal indemnity two issues possibly holding up a quick deal, sources say. The company is insisting on a liability shield that protects it from potential lawsuits relating to vaccine-related adverse events. Some countries have agreed to indemnify the vaccine makers for claims as part of the purchase pacts. India has not agreed to this so far.

India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive: Shortage, pricing, and missing May 1 deadline

BUSINESS

India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive: Shortage, pricing, and missing May 1 deadline

An industry veteran says the price of the vaccines could have been far lower. A former health secretary says the Centre’s procurement policy would lead to inequality in distribution. Even as there are many complaints, India has thus far given 15.7 crore vaccine doses.

COVID-19 | 3 major private hospitals to start Big 18+ inoculation drive on May 1

BUSINESS

COVID-19 | 3 major private hospitals to start Big 18+ inoculation drive on May 1

Apollo said it would be charging Rs 200 as administrative charges over and above the prices fixed by the manufacturers. Fortis and Max have hinted at similar administrative charges.

Exclusive | Gilead Sciences to send 1 lakh Remdesivir vials to India by next week to ease shortage

BUSINESS

Exclusive | Gilead Sciences to send 1 lakh Remdesivir vials to India by next week to ease shortage

Consignment is part of 4.5 lakh vials that Gilead Sciences promised to donate to India. The remainder of the consignment will be dispatched in the coming weeks. The Central government will allot the drug to different States, based on demand.

IIL all set to roll out Bharat Biotech's Covaxin drug substance by July-August

BUSINESS

IIL all set to roll out Bharat Biotech's Covaxin drug substance by July-August

In an exclusive interaction with Moneycontrol, K Anand Kumar, Managing Director of IIL, told that the technology transfer process is well underway, and the company has the capabilities and expertise to manufacture inactivated viral vaccines at commercial scale and under biosafety containment.

COVID-19 | 18-44 age group may have to wait for several weeks to get free vaccine shots

TRENDS

COVID-19 | 18-44 age group may have to wait for several weeks to get free vaccine shots

Around 20 states have said that they will offer COVID-19 vaccines free for 18-45 years. But many are yet to initiate negotiations and others have just begun sending feelers to vaccine companies.

Government takes over allotment of critical COVID-19 drug Tocilizumab amid shortage

BUSINESS

Government takes over allotment of critical COVID-19 drug Tocilizumab amid shortage

The drug went out of stock in the country a few weeks ago due to a sudden surge in demand because of a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases.

Roche seeks emergency use approval of antibody cocktail to treat COVID-19 patients

BUSINESS

Roche seeks emergency use approval of antibody cocktail to treat COVID-19 patients

The company on Wednesday said that it is also working urgently to increase manufacturing capacity and supply by ramping up our own production network, as well as actively collaborating with external partners to maximize production of Actemra (Tocilizumab) wherever possible with the goal of increasing its availability.

Morepen board clears $100 million investment from Switzerland-based Corinth Group

BUSINESS

Morepen board clears $100 million investment from Switzerland-based Corinth Group

Morepen Laboratories would get an investment of $32.50 million, while the remaining $67.50 million would go to promoter group companies. Morepen Laboratories will use the funds to expand the company’s R&D centre and facilities to meet growing demand for active pharmaceutical ingredients.

MSD in pact with five Indian generic firms to manufacture, distribute COVID-19 drug molnupiravir

BUSINESS

MSD in pact with five Indian generic firms to manufacture, distribute COVID-19 drug molnupiravir

Under the agreements, MSD will provide licences to these manufacturers to supply molnupiravir to India and more than 100 LMICs. MSD is also in discussions with the Medicines Patent Pool to explore the potential for additional licences.

Kerala's latest COVID-19 surge possibly linked to UK variant: INSACOG data

BUSINESS

Kerala's latest COVID-19 surge possibly linked to UK variant: INSACOG data

The UK variant which constituted just 1.06 percent cases on January 20 this year and 3.8 percent on March 20, now constitute 30.48 percent, as per data from April 25. In just one month the UK variant has grown almost 10 times.

VINS Bioproducts begins human trials of horse antisera therapy to treat COVID-19 patients

BUSINESS

VINS Bioproducts begins human trials of horse antisera therapy to treat COVID-19 patients

The therapeutic product called VINCOV-19 is obtained after immunisation of horses with spike glycoprotein of the inactivated COVID virus.

COVID-19 treatment | Natco Pharma seeks approval to launch phase-3 trial of Molnupiravir

BUSINESS

COVID-19 treatment | Natco Pharma seeks approval to launch phase-3 trial of Molnupiravir

Natco said it is hoping that CDSCO would give emergency approval of this drug based on “compassionate use” for patients.

Exclusive: Gilead to send Remdesivir vials to India, US stands by India to help fight COVID-19 2nd wave

BUSINESS

Exclusive: Gilead to send Remdesivir vials to India, US stands by India to help fight COVID-19 2nd wave

Moneycontrol learns from sources that the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) will have to issue an import license to bring the Gilead's Remdesivir stocks to India. The volume of this is still not known, but it will be in order of a few lakh vials.

Smokers, vegetarians may be less likely to contract COVID-19: CSIR survey

BUSINESS

Smokers, vegetarians may be less likely to contract COVID-19: CSIR survey

The study assessed 10,427 adult individuals working in more than 40 CSIR laboratories and centers in urban and semi-urban settings spread across and their family members.

Pharma wrap: COVID-19 vaccines in private market may cost Rs 900-1,500 per dose

BUSINESS

Pharma wrap: COVID-19 vaccines in private market may cost Rs 900-1,500 per dose

Many states have already said they will offer COVID-19 free of cost to their citizens.

Biological E gets nod to conduct late-stage clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine

BUSINESS

Biological E gets nod to conduct late-stage clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine

The Phase III clinical study, which is to be conducted in 15 sites across India, will evaluate the Immunogenicity and Safety of Biological E’s SARS-CoV-2 COVID-19 vaccine for protection against COVID-19 disease in about 1,268 healthy subjects in the age range of 18 to 80 years. It is intended to be part of a larger global Phase III study.

Explainer | Covaxin, Covishield offering protection against double mutant confirmed: How scientists figured about the vaccines

BUSINESS

Explainer | Covaxin, Covishield offering protection against double mutant confirmed: How scientists figured about the vaccines

The two announcements by government research institutions come as a relief, as scientists feared that the double mutant or B.1.617 strain of SARS-CoV-2 virus may dodge the immune system and render vaccines ineffective.

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