Mylan Launches Low-Cost, Low Dose HIV Therapy in India
Mylan’s innovative antiretroviral (ARV) drug, Avonza® received marketing approval from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI).
Avonza is a fixed dose combination therapy comprising of efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate tablets in 400 mg/300 mg/300 mg proportions.
World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended Avonza as an alternative to the first-line treatment given to people having HIV/AIDS. It will be available to the patients at a lower price than the other current first-line ARVs.
HIV replicates rapidly in the body and suppresses the immune system, leading to the attack of other opportunistic diseases and infections. ARVs effectively suppress replication, restoring the immune system. It stops the progression of illness and reduces the risk of getting opportunistic diseases.
Mylan is the first company to make this innovative drug combination available in India. In April 2017, the Health Ministry in India launched the Test and Treat Policy for HIV in which anyone testing positive for HIV will get ARV irrespective of CD4 count (the number of cells killed by the virus) or clinical stage.
Mylan’s ARV drugs are supplied to nearly 50 percent of the HIV patients in more than 100 developing countries.
Nearly 21.17 lakh people in India are living with HIV of which 6.5 percent are children under 15 years of age.
“Developing Avonza and bringing it to patients with HIV in India is a continuation of our strong and sustained commitment to expanding access to affordable, high-quality ARVs,” said Rajiv Malik, President, Mylan.
The company’s comprehensive ARV portfolio includes 14 active pharmaceutical ingredients (the core therapeutic ingredient of the drug) and 50 finished dosage forms in first-line, second-line and pediatric formulations.
Indian pharma Cipla manufactures Efavirenz under the trade name Efavir®; lamivudine under the trade name Lamivir® and tenofovir under the trade name Tenvir®.
Other Indian pharma like Zydus Cadila, Aurobindo Pharma, Emcure, Alkem Labs also develops ARV medications.