Chinese company reproduces components of remdesivir in suspected violation of patent right

BrightGene Bio-Medical Technology Co. announced Tuesday night its successful development of APIs and drug preparation technology

BrightGene Bio-Medical Technology Co. (<a href="" target="_blank">BrightGene website</a> photo)

BrightGene Bio-Medical Technology Co. (BrightGene website photo)

TAIPE (Taiwan News) — A Chinese biopharmaceutical company has successfully developed the active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) used for the formulation of the American antiviral drug remdesivir, an unapproved anti-viral drug widely believed to have potential for treating the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), United Daily News (UDN) reported on Wednesday (Feb. 12).

The drug is currently under development by American biopharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences for Ebola, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).

"The drug was found to show encouraging results when administered to the first US patient infected with the Wuhan coronavirus, according to a publication in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM)," a report on the Clinical Trials Arena website said. The patient has been discharged from hospital after recovery.

BrightGene Bio-Medical Technology Co. (博瑞醫藥) announced Tuesday night that it has successfully developed the APIs as well as associated manufacturing technologies. The drug is now in production, the UDN report said.

BrightGene said that after production, the drug will still need to undergo multiple clinical trials and approval processes. When the drug is finally ready for the market, authorization still will be required from Gilead Sciences, the patent holder, which may prove difficult, according to the report.

BrightGene has spent 5 million Renminbi on the development of the APIs as well the production of the drug. The company expects to spend another 10 million in later phases, the UDN said.