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AIDS Healthcare Foundation: Int'l AIDS Group Hits Glaxo Over 'Phony'




 

AIDS Healthcare Foundation, US' Largest AIDS Group, Questions Production Delays, British Drug Giant's Demand for 30% Patent Royalty From Aspen on Its Bid to Make Generic Copies of GSK's AIDS Drugs

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- AIDS Healthcare Foundation, (AHF) the nation's largest AIDS group and a direct provider of HIV/AIDS medical care to thousands of AIDS patients in the US, Africa and Honduras, today challenged GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK), the world's second-largest drug maker and the largest manufacturer of HIV/AIDS drugs over several lingering questions regarding its voluntary licensing agreement with South Africa's Aspen Pharmacare to produce generic versions of several key GSK AIDS drugs for distribution in South Africa. GSK granted the voluntary licenses to Aspen in October 2001, almost two years ago. As of today, no generic version of any of GSK AIDS drug has yet been produced by Aspen for use in South Africa.

"Why is it that two years after GSK first granted Aspen the voluntary licenses, not even one pill has been produced in South Africa?" said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. "Why must Aspen only be allowed to sell these drugs -- when and if they ever get produced -- to the South African government? And why is Glaxo demanding a 30 percent patent royalty from Aspen for these life-saving generic AIDS mediations? In a headline and in a press release, Glaxo's voluntary licensing agreement looked good. Sadly, two years and more than one million South African AIDS deaths later, that's all this agreement seems to be -- a headline and a press release."

This stagnant voluntary licensing agreement between GSK and Aspen also appears to be the only such agreement that GSK has chosen to enter into for production of generic versions of its AIDS medications anywhere in the world. Earlier this week Aspen announced that it will develop and produce the African continent's first generic antiretroviral drug, called Aspen-Stavudine, a generic version of Bristol-Myers Squibb AIDS drug Zerit.

SOURCE AIDS Healthcare Foundation



 


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Information in this article was accurate in August 8, 2003. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.