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Tuesday 21 February 2006
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AFRICA: Drug giant seeks to ensure local ARV availability

[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]

JOHANNESBURG, 26 January (PLUSNEWS) - Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche is to help African firms produce generic versions of its second-line anti-AIDS drug, Saquinavir, as part of its Technology Transfer Initiative.

William Burns, director of the Roche pharmaceutical division, said the transfer was vital to ensuring the local availability of antiretrovirals (ARV) and strengthening the capacity of local industries.

"We have taken this step to help ensure the right medicines and formulations are available locally ... and hope to help as many manufacturers as possible in these hardest hit countries by sharing our knowledge," Burns said in a statement.

Saquinavir, which is recommended by the World Health Organisation, is a protease inhibitor that prevents the HI virus from replicating itself when used in combination with other ARVs.



Recent AFRICA Reports
Govt adopts more focused approach to help orphans,  21/Feb/06
IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 271, 17 February 2006,  17/Feb/06
Armed forces to tackle impact of HIV/AIDS,  13/Feb/06
IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 270, 10 February 2006,  10/Feb/06
Year in Review 2005 - Uneven progress in treatment provision,  3/Feb/06
· AIDS Media Center
· The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria
· International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS
· International HIV/AIDS Alliance

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