Sinobipharma claims manufacturing first with capsule perindopril

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Pharmaceutical drug, China, Heart

Sinobiopharma is seeking a Chinese patent covering the manufacture of capsule forms of the heart drug perindopril, claiming it is the first company in the world to produce the medication in this easy to swallow format.

Sinobiopharma is attempting to protect the manufacturing and API stabilisation methods that allow it to produce the drug in capsules, rather than the usual tablet form.

Perindopril is a generic angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor used to treat hypertension and heart disease, which are a large and growing problem in China.

According to data presented last week at the 5th annual Continent International Symposium on Cardiovascular in Beijing, cardiovascular disease (CVD) is now the leading cause of death in China.

The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CCDCP) estimates that CVD kills 2.6m people a year and predicts that, by the end of this year, 100m will be diagnosed with heart disease as a result of tobacco use and unhealthy diets.

As a result of these social changes Sinobiopharma’s product, which is due for launch before the end of the year, has considerable market potential, particularly given the increasing adoption of western medicines and treatments in China.

Expands Chinese distribution network

In other Sinobiopharma news the firm has expanded the Chinese distribution of its pre-surgical muscle relaxant cisatracurium besylate, which is sold in the country as Kutai.

The Nantong based firm, which is known as Dong Ying Pharmaceutical in China, said that the new contracts cover sale of the drug in 30 provinces and will require the manufacture of 1.5m extra doses a year.

Sinobiopharma CEO Lequin Huang explained that, since its launch in late 2006, the drug has been adopted by more than 700 hospitals in China and predicted that the new distribution deals will generate additional revenue of $14m (€10.2m) a year.

Dr Huang added that the firm is also in talks to gain 100 per cent ownership of its major distribution partner Nanjing Langkun Medicine company in a bid to generate further additional income.

Seeks US partner

April is turning out to be a busy month for Sinobiopharma’s deal department. Two weeks ago the firm signed a two-year export deal with US marketing and pharmaceuticals sourcing firm Kingchem focused on cisatracurium besylate.

Cisatracurium besylate, which is sold in China as Kutai, differs from other muscle relaxants that must be kept at temperatures of 2 to 8 degrees C in that it can be stored in ambient conditions.

Sinobiopharma also claims that the drug has an earlier onset of action and longer duration of effect than other products in its class.

Under the agreement Kingchem will help Sinobiopharma find US companies interested in importing the drug. Kinchem has also been contracted help secure a development partner for the product in North America.

Speaking at the time Sinobiopharma Vice President, Xuejun Chen.said that: "We believe this agreement is a first step in expanding the international marketing of Kutai to help generate increased sales revenues."

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