Business news from Ukraine

BIOPHARMA COVERS UKRAINE’S NEED FOR BLOOD PRODUCTS BY 100% – DIRECTOR OF PLASMA CENTER NETWORK

Biopharma covers demand of the domestic market for blood products by 100%, it can resume their export, Oksana Muliarchuk, director of the company’s plasma center network, has said.
“The need for blood products is now 100% closed, we are closing the need for all hospitals, including military ones,” she told Interfax-Ukraine.
Muliarchuk explained that the need for such drugs has decreased since the beginning of the war, in particular due to the fact that a significant part of cancer patients who need such drugs have gone abroad.
At the same time, she noted that the Ministry of Health constantly monitors the availability of stocks of blood products in warehouses.
In addition, according to Maliarchuk, Biopharma began to restore the work of its plasma centers. So, for two months since the beginning of the war, plasma centers in Cherkasy and Sumy had been operating, which prepared only blood components, and in early May, the company resumed the work of plasma collection centers in Cherkasy and Kamianske, and is launching the center in Sumy.
“Unfortunately, we have centers where we cannot resume work yet. For example, in Kharkiv we cannot resume work due to hostilities. In Kyiv, the work of a plasma center has not been resumed for technical reasons – we are waiting for the opportunity to equip a bomb shelter in the building where it is located,” she said.
As reported, the Cabinet of Ministers provided for the possibility of lifting a ban on the export of blood products until martial law is lifted on the basis of a reasonable submission from the Ministry of Health, subject to meeting the needs of the healthcare system in such drugs.
Earlier, the biopharmaceutical company Biopharma (Kyiv) announced plans to invest $20-23 million in the development of a network of plasma centers by 2025, build plasma centers and blood centers in every regional center of Ukraine.

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UKRAINIAN BIOPHARMA STARTS PRODUCTION OF POTENTIALLY EFFECTIVE DRUG AGAINST CORONAVIRUS

Biopharmaceutical company Biopharma (Kyiv) has started the production a hyperimmune globulin drug, potentially effective against coronavirus (COVID-19) disease, the drug is to be produced at the end of February.
The first fusion of plasma with antibodies against COVID-19 in the amount of 2,100 liters took place on January 25, the company said in a press release.
“The product will be supplied to the finished goods warehouse at the end of February. Further, the drug is tested in an independent French laboratory, which in March must confirm the antiviral activity of the drug,” the press release said.
The company said that in case of a positive conclusion of the European laboratory, Biopharma will be able to start clinical trials of the drugs in Ukraine.
The collection of plasma with antibodies against COVID-19 started in the spring of 2020 in cooperation with the CoVIg-19 Plasma Alliance, of which Biopharma is a member. The goal of the alliance is to accelerate the development and provide reliable and sustainable treatment for people with complex coronavirus disease.
In October 2020, within the framework of the alliance, the third phase of a clinical trial of inpatient treatment with anti-coronavirus immunoglobulin started.
The results of clinical trials are planned to be published in April 2021. If the trials are successful, the new treatment could provide hope for those suffering from serious health consequences from COVID-19.
“To date, thanks to caring donors in Ukraine, it has been possible to collect about 10,700 liters of plasma from those who have overcome COVID-19. This amount of plasma will save hundreds of lives of Ukrainians. We thank every donor who has shared his part of antibodies to help seriously ill patients. And we continue to appeal to those who are not indifferent, to become plasma donors for the creation of vital drugs,” President of the company Kostiantyn Yefymenko said.
As reported, the CoVIg-19 Plasma Alliance was formed in April 2020 to fight the COVID 19 pandemic and to help develop potential plasma therapy for people who are prone to serious complications from COVID 19.
Biopharma is a Ukrainian biotechnology company, the only plant in Eastern Europe that has modern technologies, has been producing and developing drugs from donor plasma for almost 50 years.
The company is focused on providing medicines to Ukraine and on a contract basis, supplies its products to more than 30 countries around the world. In the fall of 2019, Biopharma moved its production to a new research and production complex in Bila Tserkva.
The company is developing a network of its own plasma centers. The company’s investments in this area of activity amounted to more than $10 million.

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BIOPHARMA PLANS TO INVEST UP TO $23 MLN IN DEVELOPMENT OF PLASMA CENTERS NETWORK BY 2025

Biopharmaceutical company Biopharma (Kyiv) plans to invest from $20 million to $23 million in the development of a network of plasma centers by 2025, Biopharma President Kostiantyn Yefymenko said.
“We plan to invest about $15 million in the next three years (in 2021, 2022 and 2023) in the development of blood plasma processing facilities at our site in Bila Tserkva. And we plan to invest in plasma centers during this time about $20-23 million by 2025,” he said in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine.
Yefymenko said that the company already has seven plasma centers, including in Cherkasy, Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dnipro, Konotop, Shostka and Sumy.
In 2021, Biopharma plans to build four more plasma centers in Kamianske, Mykolaiv and Poltava.
“As for the fourth plasma center […] we are now thinking whether it will be Kryvy Rih or Kherson. We intend to build plasma centers and blood centers in every regional center of Ukraine in five years,” Yefymenko said.

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BIOPHARMA COLLECTS CORONAVIRUS PLASMA TO PRODUCE IMMUNOGLOBULIN

Biopharmaceutical company Biopharma (Kyiv) has collected COVID-19 plasma for the production of the first batch of hyperimmune immunoglobulin, President of the company Kostiantyn Yefymenko has said.
Biopharma has collected 2,200 liters of COVID-19 plasma. For the first loading of the fractionator, 1,800 liters are needed, we have an even larger volume,” he told reporters during a visit to the company’s plasma center in Kyiv on Tuesday, November 24.
Yefymenko said that the company plans to carry out the first load of the fractionator next week to produce the first batch of hyperimmune immunoglobulin from the plasma of people who have had COVID-19.
According to Yefymenko, it takes eight or nine days to produce the drug.
The company started collecting COVID-19 plasma in May, but the collection process was slow at that time as the number of people who had COVID-19 was small.
“Now the speed of plasma collection has increased,” Yefymenko said.
He reported that the cost of one bottle of the drug can reach UAH 10,000, three or four bottles could be needed for treatment.
The production of one bottle requires about 2.5 liters of plasma. During one donation, a donor can donate up to 800 milliliters of plasma.
Biopharma is a Ukrainian biotechnology company, the only plant in Eastern Europe that has modern technologies, has been producing and developing drugs from donor plasma for almost 50 years.
The company is focused on providing medicines to Ukraine and on a contract basis, supplies its products to more than 30 countries around the world. In the fall of 2019, Biopharma moved its production to a new research and production complex in Bila Tserkva.
The company is developing a network of its own plasma centers. Now they work in Sumy, Shostka, Konotop, Cherkasy, Dnipro and Kharkiv.

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BIOPHARMA CANNOT INCREASE BIOVEN PRODUCTION DUE TO LACK OF PLASMA DONATION CULTURE IN UKRAINE

The biopharmaceutical company Biopharma (Kyiv) is limited in possibilities of increasing production of the Bioven medication (immunoglobulin) due to the lack of plasma donation culture in Ukraine and the lack of plasma, Oksana Plotnikova, director of strategic development at Biopharma, has said.
“We would like to expect an increase in Bioven production, which is why we are creating plasma centers to increase donor activity among the population. We have many blood donors, but the country does not have a culture of plasma donation for fractionation,” she said at a press conference on the completion of clinical trials of the Bioven drug in the complex therapy of patients with coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on Wednesday.
Plotnikova said that as the world completes clinical trials confirming the effectiveness of drugs based on blood plasma in treatment of COVID-19, the demand for such drugs, and, therefore, plasma will grow.
“We are on the verge of the fact that many countries – Canada, Europe – will restrict imports. There will be no imported drug in the country,” she said.
Plotnikova reported that “Ukrainian donors today do not donate the amount of plasma that could meet the needs of Ukraine.”
“Today, in order to provide Ukraine, we buy plasma from the United States, Slovakia. We cannot buy Indian or Vietnamese plasma, because we do not buy plasma that is not standardized under European standards,” she said.
Plotnikova said that Biopharma actively cooperates with communal blood centers, “so that communal stations develop, reconstruct and procure not only blood components for hospitals, but also plasma for fractionators to provide Ukraine with drugs.”
“The demand for intravenous infusion of immunoglobulin G, and subsequently convalescent plasma and hyperimmune immunoglobulin, is obvious. Today we see and understand that the real effectiveness of the drug makes it possible to save lives, which means that the need is growing,” she said.

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ANNUAL INVESTMENTS OF PHARM COMPANY BIOPHARMA IS $15-20 MLN – CO-OWNER

Investment of the pharmaceutical company Biopharma is $15-20 million, co-owner of the company Kostiantyn Yefymenko has said.
“We have already invested $125 million in production facilities. We continue to invest $15-20 million every year. And we have not yet begun to build a second plant, for example, in Egypt. When we build it, investments will be even bigger,” he said during a discussion panel at the Kyiv International Economic Forum.
Yefymenko said that “the decision to sell the plant to the pharmaceutical company STADA was strategic.”
“We have built two plants. One plant that produces generic drugs, hormones and probiotics, we brought to a turnover of EUR 40 million and sold it completely to STADA,” he said, adding that “STADA and not only STADA is watching and continues to look at not only Biopharma, but also other pharmaceutical companies.”
Yefymenko spoke about the negotiations between Biopharma and STADA. “I can’t say that it took much time for them to come. STADA bought the plant and we have a completely transparent fence with them, because we are on the same site. STADA and I have remained partners, since all the infrastructure that we built, we have with them 50×50. This is a transformer substation, gas hydraulic fracturing, water supply, sewage and fire protection system,” he said.
“STADA is considering the possibility of expanding its plant, we are considering expanding our plant,” Yefymenko said

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