1. Pharma sector to soon showcase new drugs: Harsh Vardhan

Pharma sector to soon showcase new drugs: Harsh Vardhan

The Indian pharmaceutical sector would soon be showcasing new drugs for malaria, osteoporosis and diabetes, Union Minister for Science and Technology Harsh Vardhan here today said...

By: | Lucknow | Published: April 11, 2015 8:20 PM
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“The pharmaceutical sector would soon be showcasing new drugs for malaria, osteoporosis and diabetes,” Harsh Vardhan said. (PTI)

The Indian pharmaceutical sector would soon be showcasing new drugs for malaria, osteoporosis and diabetes, Union Minister for Science and Technology Harsh Vardhan here today said.

The candidate drugs are currently undergoing clinical trials, he said.

“The pharmaceutical sector would soon be showcasing new drugs for malaria, osteoporosis and diabetes,” Vardhan said.

He announced that simultaneously Central Drug Research Institute (CDRI) is carrying out Investigational New Drug (IND) studies on lead molecules for fracture-healing, cancers, thrombosis, malaria and hyperglycemia.

“I am confident that the drug laboratories under CSIR are capable of backing up the Swasth Bharat Mission. Our scientists are focusing on both infectious and life-style diseases. We are developing next-generation drugs, biologics, biosimilars, gene therapeutics, stem cell therapeutics, personalised medicine and multi functional nano medicine,” the minister said.

It would strive to build a new generation of enterprises in the healthcare sector, he said.

He also announced that government would soon set up the Biopharma Industry Incubator (BII) under the umbrella of CDRI Lucknow.

Talking to reporters after a visit to the CDRI, he said that Indian research and development efforts in government laboratories under the wing of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) have a track record in making drugs for kalaazar, filaria, leprosy and tuberculosis available at affordable rates to the common man.

He said that recently IMTECH Chandigarh has developed a clot specific streptokinase, IIIM, Jammu has discovered natural product-based potential medicine for rheumatoid arthritis, IICB Kolkata has developed an herbal extract for the treatment of benign prostate hyperplasia.

“I am certain that India has the potential of becoming a global pharmaceutical powerhouse and am in the process of putting some key enablers in place. These include giving the right incentives for R&D, forging alliances with the private sector and keeping an open mind on suggestions for fiscal relief to the private sector so that its role in R&D is enhanced,” Vardhan said.

“Strengthening of the R&D ecosystem is the priority”, he said.

Vardhan also emphasised that the people were expecting that CSIR laboratories would be able to produce therapeutic and preventive measures for re-emerged infectious diseases like dengue, chikunguniya, encephalitis, swine flu as well as conditions like cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis, hypertension, depression and ulcers.

“Today India ranks third in terms of volume of production with 10 percent share of the global market by volume and 14th largest by value. India is often dubbed the “pharmacy of developing world,” he said.

He, however, pointed out that India still has a long way to go in pharmaceutical research and development and needs to move from a phase of manufacturing to innovation.

He expressed concern over the fact that currently new drug research and development in India was mostly an affair of government organisations.

“I request industry representatives to collaborate with CSIR laboratories in new drug R&D. The PM has given a call for Make in India. We need to generate millions of jobs in a couple of years because this country has a youth bulge.

Seamless partnership will help develop products and technologies for the benefit of the common man,” he said.

He said that this ministry was also considering setting up Government Laboratory Practices (GLP) certified labs in CDRI for complete range of Investigational New Drug (IND) studies.

He said the step would foster new drug development as well as shore up the financial bottom line of the laboratory.

The minister also announced the formation of a National Centre for Laboratory Animals in the CDRI new campus conforming to national and international guidelines.

The new institution would serve as a referral centre for lab animal breeding and experimentation for new drug development.

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