Lloyd Laboratories in talks with China firm for PH COVID vax production

Published January 13, 2022, 2:09 PM

by Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

Lloyd Laboratories is in discussion with Livzon Mavpharm Inc., a Chinese technology partner, for its planned COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing project in the Philippines.

(UNSPLASH / MANILA BULLETIN)

Christopher M. Bamba, Lloyd Laboratories director business development, said they are specifically discussing with Livzon Mavpharm Inc., a unit under the Chinese conglomerate Livzon Biotech.

Bamba said they have a small capacity for pre-filled syringes for the vaccines at its local facility and have initially laid out the plan and started civil works for the vaccine facility already.

Lloyd Laboratories Vice-President for Technical Dr. Chandra Shekhara Reddy Nagareddy said they are not going into the basic vaccine manufacturing, but jut fill and finish kind of manufacturing.

Dr. Antonio Ligsay, head of clinical trial said that Livzon is willing to do technical transfer for the manufacture of recombinant protein vaccines, a fusion protein to treat COVID-19 patients.

According to Ligsay, the type of vaccine called VO1 is recombinant protein that will improve immunity. Livzon has already completed Phase 1 and 2 studies in China. The phase 3 clinical study is being done in the PhiIippines, Indonesia, and Russia. The trial involves 21,500 subjects where the Philippines contributed 12,000.

“We are entering interim analysis because we are nearing our goal,” said Ligsay hoping that the analysis could be started next week.

Hopefully, he said, if the results are good and effective they can apply for Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) with the local Food and Drug Administration.

For its Molnupiravir project, Bamba said they can sell their COVID medicine at 30 to 50 percent cheaper than competition, which are currently selling at P100 to P150 per capsule although the pricing is still being finalized.

Nagareddy explained they can sell at lower prices because the only imported component is the active pharmaceutical ingredient from its technology partner Optimus Private Ltd of India and the capsules.

“We are directly dealing with the manufacturer so we get the materials with the least price,” he said.

Lloyd has already supplied 600 capsules to Recuenco General Hospital last week although they were given CSP (compassionate special permit) approval to manufacture 10,000 capsules based on its application in October. They have also converted their approved CSP into EUA application last December 21 to enable them to produce more and serve the high local demand for hospitals and institutions without them applying for CSP.

Bamba estimated the need for 3.6 million of Molnupiravor capsules to treat 20 percent of active COVID-19 cases in the country, especially those with comorbidities.

The generic molnupiravir will come in blister packs of tens and box packs of 100s.

Nagareddy said once their EUA application is approved by FDA, they can readily produce the molnupiravir capsules, which can be made available within 5 to 7 days in the local market from day of approval.

The Lloyd facility in Malolos, Bulacan has also the capacity to produce a minimum of 1 million capsules in one manufacturing batch.

The Board of Investments has (BOI) has approved the registration of the Lloyd project for tax and incentive purposes already

Lloyd is the only pharma company that is producing Ivermectin for humans. It also produces other vitamins and supplements.

Currently, it is also discussing with its sister companies in Indonesia and Vietnam for potential exports of other medicines produced in the Philippines.

 
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