Fri, Jul 19, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Orient Pharma helps ‘droolers’

BIO TAIWAN:An oral solution to help central nervous system problem sufferers is set for the US market, and a ‘prefilled’ syringe has been used successfully in Taiwan

By Camaron Kao  /  Staff reporter, with CNA

Local drug developer Orient Pharma (友霖生技) said yesterday its oral solution for excessive drooling is likely to be licensed to US companies by the end of this year.

In addition, a generic drug for diabetes is also likely to be approved by the US government by the fourth quarter and become the first generic drug for diabetes on the US market, Orient Pharma spokesperson Anita Chen (陳嬿娟) said at a biotechnology exhibition and conference yesterday.

The four-day Bio Taiwan is taking place at the Taipei World Trade Center.

Orient Pharma’s oral solution has completed the second phase of clinical trials and the results were presented at the 17th international congress of Parkinson’s disease and movement disorders in Sydney, Australia, last month.

The company said most people with central nervous system problems suffer excessive drooling and that according to a WHO estimate, the annual US market for central nervous system diseases is valued at US$70 billion and that for new diabetes treatments is about US$3 billion.

Meanwhile, local drug maker SynCore Biotechnology Co (杏國新藥) said that Veregen, its cure for genital warts, had received a permit from the government and will be on sale by the end of this quarter.

The company said it is also planning to become a listed company on the Emerging Stock Market, but did not provide a specific date.

HIGH EXPECTATIONS

Medical care equipment suppliers are also participating at this year’s event amid high expectations that they will soon be included in a government subsidy program.

In his opening speech at the event, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said that the government would include the development of high-risk medical devices into a subsidy program in an amendment to the Act for the Development of the Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Industry (生技新藥產業發展條例).

The amendment of the act is set to be reviewed by the legislature in the September to December session, Ma said.

Total revenue for the local biomedical industry last year was NT$263 billion, up 10 percent from the previous year, a higher increase than many industries, Ma said.

However, most companies in the biomedical industry are small and medium-sized enterprises, Ma said, adding that the government aims to support the industry and increase its total output to NT$500 billion by 2020, with the revenue of each of the top five companies exceeding NT$10 billion.

Separately, Medical supply provider Nang Kuang Pharmaceutical Co (南光化學製藥) said its prefilled syringe, which is used to clean a central venous catheter or an implanted port, had successfully been used by National Taiwan University Hospital and Shin Kong Wu Ho-su Memorial Hospital.

“The Bureau of National Health Insurance is likely to agree to cover the cost of our prefilled syringe by next quarter,” Nang Kuang sales director Song Chih-jen (宋智仁) said.

The prefilled syringe cuts risks of contamination when cleaning a patient’s central venous catheter or implanted port, Song said.

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