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Brazilian Ministry of Health Calls for Partnerships Between Public Laboratories and Private Companies

The Ministry of Health has called upon private companies to set partnerships and strategic alliances with public laboratories to foster the production of innovative drugs in Brazil.

The campaign for new partnerships took place last week, as the health authorities highlighted the availability of the National Bank of Economic and Social Development (BNDES) to fund, at a very low interest rates, new ventures for certain priorities areas, such as the pharmaceutical sector.

Further to that, it will be announced by the end of the year a series of collaborative agreements between 18 public laboratories and local private companies, being all of them related to research and developments of relevant drugs to the Brazilian population.

In the campaign for partnerships, the Ministry of Health praised once more the strategic alliance recently executed (August 17, 2009) between GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK) and Brazil’s Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (FIOCRUZ) as it is a continuous step towards the commitment to decrease the Brazilian external dependency on the treatment of some diseases and build up an industrial infrastructure for the sector.

With this agreement, it is expected that GSK will invest the amount of EUR 35 million, in the installation of a research and development centre for the development of a vaccine for malaria, yellow fever and dengue fever. Moreover, FIOCRUZ shall have full access to the underlying technology of GSK’s 10-valet conjugate vaccine for paediatric pneumococcal disease (known as Synflorix), which will allow FIOCRUZ’ Unit, so-called BioManguinhos, to produce 13 million doses of vaccines per year. In the meantime, GSK will supply Synflorix to the Government and this vaccine will become part of the Brazilian National Immunization Program (PNI), in 2010.

It appears that GSK and FIOCRUZ relationship in the development of vaccines turned out to be, once again, fruitful for both parties, a partnership initiated back in 1985, with the supply of polio vaccines to the Brazilian government.

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