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Pfizer's oral drug will be made in India by 19 different companies.

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Published By:
Peeyush Ghalot
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(Image Courtesy: - The Indian Express)

The United Nations-backed Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) has inked sublicense agreements with 19 Indian drug makers to produce the generic version of Pfizer's oral COVID-19 antiviral nirmatrelvir, which is to be used in combination with ritonavir. They are one of 35 firms from 12 countries that have signed agreements with MPP to manufacture and deliver products to 95 low- and middle-income nations, including India. The non-exclusive sublicenses allow generic drug makers to create nirmatrelvir raw materials and/or the finished medicine in combination with ritonavir. The agreements come after MPP and Pfizer signed a voluntary licencing deal in November 2021. Pfizer sells Paxlovid, an oral COVID-19 medication that has acquired emergency use/conditional approval from the US Food and Drug Administration and the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). Six of the 35 enterprises will specialize on drug substance production, nine on drug product production, while the others will do both. So long as COVID-19 is classified as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern by the WHO, Pfizer will not collect royalties from sales of nirmatrelvir by MPP sublicensees.

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