NIPRISAN Commercializes Sickle Cell Anaemia Drug

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The Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole has witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD) and MAY and BAKER (M&B) in Abuja. This was in furtherance of the private sector alliance with the Federal Government under the Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement.

In his speech delivered at the ceremony, the Minister said that the commercialization of NIPRISAN herbal product, a drug for sickle – cell anaemia has come a long way to serve as a model for the production and development of regulatory guidelines for the assessment and registration of phytomedicines in Nigeria. He noted that the project was the first herbal medicinal product in Nigeria to go through the full process of clinical studies starting from phase one to the end. There being, it should be marketed to all Chief Medical Directors / MDs for the treatment of sickle cell anaemia.

The Minister called for the establishment of MAY and BAKER laboratory in NIPRD as the first collaborative effort of the Federal Ministry of Health through NIPRD and May & Baker. This, he said would encourage the production of more drugs for the treatment of other ailments and further strengthen the collaboration between the two organizations for the overall benefit of Nigerians. “his is the beginning of many more products to come from NIPRD,” Adewole explained.

Isaac Adewole commended President Mohammadu Buhari for giving the NIPRISAN Memo the fastest approval at the Federal Executive Council, Speaking earlier, the Acting DG / NIPRD, Kunle Olubayo inferred that in spite of the initial challenges faced as regards commercialization of NIPRISAN, the product has survived to prove that research could be done well in Nigeria. He also informed that patients who were part of the Phase 2A studies in the institute found NIPRISAN so useful that they formed a sickle cell club at the end of the study. He continued that the patients subsequently requested that the institute persists in providing them with the drug.

In his remarks, the Representative of May & Baker Pharmaceutical Company, Nnamdi Okafor hinted that M&B had been the first western company to produce drugs in Nigeria. She expressed commitment to furthering the partnership through more research and the production of other quality and affordable drugs in Nigeria to ensure the wellbeing of all.

Boade Akinola
Federal Ministry of Health Report
ABUJA