Date
17 August 2017
With Ebola toll mounting in Africa, drug makers worldwide are scrambling to come up with experimental cures for the deadly disease. Photo: Reuters
With Ebola toll mounting in Africa, drug makers worldwide are scrambling to come up with experimental cures for the deadly disease. Photo: Reuters

Sihuan Pharma eyes quick nod for Ebola drug

China’s Sihuan Pharmaceutical Holdings Group is seeking fast-track approval for a drug that it says can cure Ebola, Reuters reported Tuesday.

The company, which has close ties with the military, has signed a tie-up with Chinese research Academy of Military Medical Sciences last week to help push the drug called JK-05 through the approval process in China and bring it to market, the report said.

The drug, developed by the academy, is currently approved for emergency military use only.

“We believe that we can file to the Chinese Food and Drug Administration before the end of the year,” Sihuan’s chairman Che Fengsheng was quoted as saying during an investor call last week.

Sihuan’s drug is only one contender amongst a number of experimental cures worldwide to treat Ebola. If successful it would be a huge boon for China’s developing pharmaceutical sector and the country’s soft power in Africa, the report noted.

The current Ebola outbreak, the worst on record of the disease, has killed more than 4,000 people, mostly in West Africa.

Che said one of Sihuan’s strengths was its close military ties. The firm, which claims to be China’s third largest prescription drugmaker, was originally a military scientific unit before being spun off into its current form in 2001.

Sihuan is now part-owned by Morgan Stanley, according to the report.

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RC

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