- US Food and Drug Administration recently authorised a drug to treat COVID-19 patients in emergency
- Jubilant has signed a licensing deal with the drug manufacturer
On Tuesday, Jubilant Life Sciences Limited India’s extension said that it has signed a non-exclusive licensing agreement with Gilead Scienced Inc. for their experimental Coronavirus drug called “remdesivir” which was recently given authorisation by the US Food and Drug Administration to treat the Coronavirus patients in emergency use.
This drug will be sold in 127 countries by Jubilant Life Sciences Limited, including India.
Jubilant will also get the rights to produce the drug via the deal and scale the manufacturing in nearly all the low- and medium-income countries along with few high-income countries.
Gilead earlier said that it was in talks with several drug manufacturers in India and Pakistan with long-term licenses to manufacture remdesivir for the developing nations. It also said that it will offer technology needed for the production of the drug.
As of now, there is no approved treatment for the novel Coronavirus, however, interest in remdesivir is growing and the company is being closely watched on both the distribution and pricing of the experimental drug. Just recently, Indian firm Serum Institute said it will price the COVID-19 drug at Rs. 1,000 which is being developed at the Oxford University in the UK.
However, Gilead’s terms of agreement are being criticised by the Doctors Without Borders, which is a Not-for-Profit also known as Medecins Sans Frontières (MSF) for the lack of transparency.
Head of MSF’s Access Campaign, South Asia, Leena Menghaney said, “We believe that instead of business as usual, such agreements should be made public and licenses have to be global including all countries – low, middle and high income,”. Gilead did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the agreement with Jubilant.