February 28, 2021

Dexamethasone: Indian drug companies cheer dexamethasone efficacy on extreme COVID-19 sufferers

MUMBAI: Home drug producers are bracing for a rise within the costs of lively pharmaceutical substances (APIs) that go into the manufacture of a steroid which a trial confirmed as being efficient in treating Covid-19 sufferers with extreme signs.

The APIs, the essential uncooked materials for drug manufacture, come from China and Indian drug makers rely fully on imports from there to make the low-cost, off-patent Dexamethasone, a category of corticosteroids used to deal with lung and respiratory illnesses.

In India, the market measurement of this drug is round Rs 50 crore, and they’re manufactured by a number of small and medium generic drug makers. A number of the main manufacturers on this class belong to corporations equivalent to Zydus Cadila and Wockhardt.

“We’ve been manufacturing giant portions of each injectables and the pill type of this drug. We’ve greater than satisfactory provide, we’ll ramp up manufacturing whether it is required,” mentioned Habil Khorakiwala, CEO of Wockhardt Pharma. “For now, we now have inventory of the API required for formulation,” he added.

The API import value is prone to go up by 10-30%, however is unlikely to shoot up past that, mentioned Anil Satwani, CEO of Symbiotic Pharma, one of many main producers of steroid APIs on this planet.

The worth per kilo of the drug’s API is about Rs 55,000-Rs 65,000.

Symbiotic Pharma has been getting calls from internationally since Wednesday morning enquiring about its manufacturing capability for the drug, Satwani mentioned.

“We’ve a capability of 150 tonnes and for rapid requirement we now have inventory to ramp up manufacturing,” he mentioned.

Symbiotic is likely one of the few API producers that doesn’t fully rely on China for the important thing beginning materials.

M P Gupta, basic supervisor of Mahima Lifesciences, a Chandigarh-based steroid API maker, mentioned the corporate was anticipating a soar in uncooked materials prices and potential provide disruption if demand goes up.

Even earlier than the outcomes of the trial have been revealed, physicians in India have been utilizing a much less potent model of this steroid, referred to as methylprednisolone, on extreme Covid-19 sufferers.

These steroids price Rs 100-Rs 200 for a day’s dose and will not enhance for sufferers since they’re below value management.