Month: October 2016

19 Oct 2016

Zydus Cadila to collaborate with MMV on new anti-malaria drug

MMV (Medicines for Malaria Venture) and Zydus Cadila (Indian pharmaceutical company headquartered at Ahmedabad in Gujarat state of western India) have announced a collaboration to develop the investigational antimalarial compound MMV253.

“Zydus Cadila and Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV) announced a collaboration to develop the investigational anti-malarial compound, MMV674253. Zydus will lead the development of the novel compound and MMV will provide support, including scientific expertise and access to tools in malaria drug development and delivery,” Zydus Cadila’s listed group firm Cadila Healthcare said in a BSE filing.

“Malaria is a major global health risk and its menace has only worsened with the problem of artemisinin-resistance. By collaborating with Medicines for Malaria Venture in this initiative, we hope to usher in a step change in the treatment of this deadly disease,” said Pankaj R. Patel, Chairman and Managing Director, Zydus. “This molecule has a novel mechanism of action, rapidly kills parasites across all intra-erythrocytic stages and has a long half-life, which means it might even lead to a single-dose cure for P. falciparum malaria.”

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03 Oct 2016

Exciting development in TB medicine for children

TB Alliance together with the Kenya Ministry of Health, UNITAID and others have released a range of new formulations of existing TB medicines tailored for children. The new medicines are easier to administer and this will hopefully increase the treatment and survival rate for children living with TB.

Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Health, Dr. Cleopa Mailu, explained: “Kenya is playing a leading role in the fight against childhood TB by being the first to introduce improved TB medicines for children. Now, with the appropriate treatments, we can make rapid progress in finding and treating children with TB so we can achieve a TB free generation.”

With current treatments, caregivers have to break, cut or crush multiple pills just to create the correct dosage for a child. Due to the effort involved and the bitter taste of these pills, treatment is difficult to keep up for the required 6 months, resulting in treatment failure and sometimes even death.

The new treatment consists of improved formulations which are available in the correct doses, are flavoured and is water soluble.

According to Dr. Cherise Scott, Director of Pediatric Programs for TB Alliance: “We are proud to partner with the Government of Kenya, the first of many countries, as they work to translate the potential of these medicines into lives saved.”

From 1 October 2016, all children starting on TB treatment in Kenya will be prescribed the new medicine. “Childhood TB is a problem that can be solved when we choose to act,” commented Dr. Enos Masini, Head of Kenya’s National Tuberculosis, Leprosy, and Lung Disease Program.

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