Chennai: In a major breakthrough, the Madras Medical College (MMC) has developed not just one but two anti-tuberculosis drug formulations. According to a recent media report, MMC will apply to the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) to get permission for mass manufacture of the drug formulations.
The two novel synthetic molecules have been developed by the College of Pharmacy and have manifested to effectively control Tb bacteria in Petri dishes in laboratory conditions. Patents have been filed for the drugs. Once MMC has the licence, it will also be eligible to bid for tenders with the medical service corporation.
While not providing complete detail about the molecules, MMC Madras Medical principal A Jerad Suresh told TOI, “We hope the new formulations will be more effective than the existing combination. But it has to undergo several phases of trials, including ones on animal and humans before it can be used on patients. If that happens, it may lead to solutions for drug-resistant strains of TB.”
A couple of months ago, MCC had developed and launched the antiseptic solution for use in hospital and college for a mere amount of Rs 82 for a 500ml bottle, which is in contrast to the average cost of Rs 341 when purchased from the open market.
The hospital, on an average, uses at least 1,000 bottles of the solution per month. “We tested it in the labs and found the solution effective. We have asked doctors, nurses and paramedical staff to use them liberally. The feedback about its quality has been very good,” MMC dean Dr R Jayanthi told TOI.
The move has helped in cutting down on the cost with an estimated saving of more than Rs 32.08 lakh annually for just one hospital.
MMC has convinced the state health department that it will be able to help all government hospitals to substantially reduce the cost of hand sanitizers.
The College has plans to seek CDSCO’s permission for the mass manufacturing of the medicines, specifically the antimicrobial solutions being developed in the college campus.
“We are strengthening our infrastructure and human resources for mass production. Eventually, we can also build capacity to manufacture drugs based on need,” Dr Jayanthi told the daily.
India accounts for one-fourth of the global TB incidence. In 2015, an estimated 28 lakh cases occurred and 4.8 lakh people died due to TB.
Located in Chennai, Madras Medical College was established on 2 February 1835. It is the third oldest medical college in the country and is one of the foremost centres of post-graduate medical education in the country with 425 seats.