Drugs, Pharmaceutics

Korea's homegrown drug set to post record sales

Annual sales of a diabetes drug manufactured by LG Life Sciences Ltd., the pharmaceuticals unit of South Korea’s LG Group, are likely to exceed 50 billion won ($44.9 million) this year, the drug firm said Wednesday. It would mark the first time for the annual sales of a single homegrown drug to breach the 50 billion-won mark. The combined sales of Zemiglo , which was approved as the nation’s 19th new drug in 2012, and its composite drug Zemimet came to [...]

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Korean biosimilars make inroads into Europe

[THE INVESTOR] Propelled by Samsung Bioepis and Celltrion, South Korean biopharmaceutical companies are gaining a foothold in Europe with their biosimilars, cheaper copycat versions of biologics. Celltrion’s Remsima — biosimilar replication of rheumatoid arthritis treatment drug Remicade — and Samsung Bioepis’ Benepali — biosimilar copy of Amgen’s rheumatoid arthritis treatment Enbrel – along with Flixabi, another Remicade biosimilar, are already selling in Europe, one of the world’ largest market for such drugs. Three other biosimilars are awaiting permission from the European [...]

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Big Korean pharma firms launch venture capital biz

[THE INVESTOR] A handful of Korean pharmaceutical companies are scurrying to set up venture capital firms to find new revenue sources by investing in smaller firms in need of capital. Hanmi Pharm announced on July 4 that it has founded a 10 billion won (US$ 8.7 million) investment company that will invest into biotech and pharmaceutical fields. “We will contribute to create an open innovation ecosystem by focusing on discovering new drug candidates and pharmaceutical and biotech start-ups,” said Lim Jong-hoon, [...]

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Green Cross Labcell, ST Pharm to go public

[THE INVESTOR] Korean pharma companies Green Cross Labcell and ST Pharm will list on the secondary bourse KOSDAQ on June 23, the Korea Exchange announced on June 22. Green Cross Labcell, a Green Cross affiliate that develops drugs for incurable diseases, posted 34.5 billion won (US $29.8 million) in sales and operating profit of 2.3 billion won last year. The initial public offering is priced at 18,500 won. ST Pharm, launched in 2008, recorded 138 billion won in sales and 25.2 [...]

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Korea, Mexico agree on drug standards deal

South Korea and Mexico signed an agreement in Mexico City Tuesday to mutually recognize each state’s pharmaceuticals qualification standards, a move expected to expedite the entry of Korean drugs into the Mexican market. The deal will take effect once Mexico officially joins the Pharmaceutical Inspection Cooperation Scheme, an international body that sets an international manufacturing quality standard for new drugs. The U.S., European Union, Japan and Korea are among its members. Though the exact timing is unknown, Mexico is “currently undertaking [...]

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Seho Tech offers chemical solution for nonflammable material

Overshadowed by big corporate names like Samsung and Hyundai, Korea’s small and medium-sized enterprises with a technological edge have little chance to expose themselves to the global business scene. This is why the Small and Medium Business Administration discovers small and hidden “gems,” driven by innovative technology, and helps them grow into bigger players. Seho Tech, a local chemical materials supplier, is one such company the SMBA recognized as a technological innovation project leader in 2013. The Gimhae-based company has put [...]

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Concerns rise over expansion of illegal pharma kickbacks

Fresh concerns are rising over the expansion of illegal kickbacks offered by pharmaceutical companies to doctors in South Korea, as prosecutors have begun investigating the local arm of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis on suspicions of bribery. The Seoul Western District Prosecutor’s Office raided Novartis Korea on Monday, confiscating the company’s documents and checkbooks on allegations that it had handed out money and other kickbacks, known in the industry as “rebates,” to local doctors. Rebate provisions — drugmakers offering kickbacks to doctors [...]

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Korean drugmakers have prescription for global expansion

Korean drugmakers and bio companies, buoyed by Hanmi Pharmaceutical’s strong performance last year, are seeking overseas markets, industry sources said Wednesday. Global pharmaceutical companies’ perception of Korean industries has also become far more favorable, thanks to Hanmi’s successive contracts for technology export, encouraging the latter’s advance to foreign markets, they said. Taking the lead is Chong Kun Dang, which has been conducting clinical tests for its biosimilar product of anemia remedy CKD-11101 at home, but is planning to expand the experiment [...]

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Korea to speed up tech, medical regulations

The South Korean government Friday unveiled plans to ease regulations on drones and self-driving cars, paving the way for the futuristic technologies to spur related industries. The plans were given in a brief when President Park Geun-hye presided over the fourth regulatory reform ministerial meeting at Cheong Wa Dae. “Deregulation is crucial to secure our future growth engines and to revitalize the economy,” said the president, calling for parliamentary support for the passage of related bills at the National Assembly. According to [...]

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SK’s hemophilia drug begins EU approval process

SK Chemicals, the pharmaceutical unit of South Korea’s SK Group, said Wednesday it has submitted its self-developed hemophilia drug NBP601 for review and subsequent approval by the European Medicines Agency. The announcement, which comes as SK awaits the drug’s approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, draws the company a step closer toward commercializing the recombinant DNA drug in global markets. Lifted by the positive sales outlook, SK Chemicals’ shares rose by around 2.43 percent to close at 71,700 won [...]

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