RDIF and ChemRar to deliver 60,000 courses of the first COVID-19 drug registered in Russia, Avifavir, to the country’s hospitals in June
- Avifavir is the first direct-acting antiviral drug registered in Russia that has proven effective against COVID-19 in clinical trials
- Avifavir has become the first Favipiravir-based drug in the world approved for the treatment of COVID-19
Moscow, June 1, 2020 - The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, and the ChemRar Group will deliver 60,000 courses of Avifavir to Russian hospitals in June. Avifavir is Russia’s first COVID-19 drug and has shown high efficacy in treating patients with coronavirus during clinical trials. Avifavir has received a registration certificate from the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation. Thus, Avifavir has become the first Favipiravir-based drug in the world approved for the treatment of COVID-19.
In early June, the first batches of Avifavir will be sent to Russia’s Federal Service for Surveillance in Healthcare (Roszdravnadzor) for approval for use. Deliveries of the first batches of the drug to Russian hospitals are expected on June 11, 2020. The high quality of Avifavir is due to more stringent requirements for its active pharmaceutical ingredient, compared with the requirements for active pharmaceutical ingredients in international markets.
Avifavir, which disrupts the reproduction mechanisms of coronavirus, is the first Russian direct-acting antiviral drug that has proven effective in clinical trials. The drug has been well studied, since it has been used in Japan since 2014 against severe forms of influenza.
The intermediate data from the Avifavir clinical trials confirm its high efficacy against COVID-19. The final stage of Avifavir clinical trials involving 330 patients, approved by the Russian Ministry of Health on May 21, 2020, is ongoing. The number of medical centers approved for the participation in Avifavir clinical trials has increased from 30 to 35 across Russia’s regions.
The drug proved to be highly effective during the clinical trials involving I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University, Lomonosov Moscow State University and other medical and academic institutions.
- According to the results of the 10 days of the clinical trials, Avifavir demonstrated safety with no new or previously unreported side effects detected;
- Median elimination of the virus took four days compared to nine days with standard therapy, according to the study;
- Efficacy of the drug is above 80%, a criterion for a drug with high antiviral activity;
- Following the first four days of treatment, 65% of the 40 patients who took Avifavir tested negative for coronavirus, which is twice as many as in the standard therapy group. By day 10, the number of patients whose tests returned negative results reached 90%;
- The body temperature of 68% of patients taking Avifavir returned to normal earlier (on the third day) than in the control group (on the sixth day);
- The drug is undergoing trials in Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Tver, Nizhny Novgorod, Smolensk, Ryazan, Kazan, Ufa and in the Republic of Dagestan.
Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, said:
“RDIF and ChemRar, in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health, have swiftly produced and registered a drug that surpasses its global peers not only in terms of effectiveness, but also of safety. Avifavir more than halves the duration of the disease, ensuring most patients are free of infection after the fifth day of treatment, which helps to more successfully fight the virus and protects Russian hospitals from being overwhelmed. Afivavir is not only the first antiviral drug registered against coronavirus in Russia, but it is also perhaps the most promising anti-COVID-19 drug in the world. It was developed and tested in clinical trials in Russia in an unprecedented short period of time, enabling Afivavir to become the world’s first registered drug based on Favipiravir.”
Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is Russia's sovereign wealth fund established in 2011 to make equity co-investments, primarily in Russia, alongside reputable international financial and strategic investors. RDIF acts as a catalyst for direct investment in the Russian economy. RDIF’s management company is based in Moscow. Currently, RDIF has experience of the successful joint implementation of more than 80 projects with foreign partners totaling more than RUB1.8 tn and covering 95% of the regions of the Russian Federation. RDIF portfolio companies employ more than 800,000 people and generate revenues which equate to more than 6% of Russia’s GDP. RDIF has established joint strategic partnerships with leading international co-investors from more than 15 countries that total more than $40 bn.
RDIF takes active steps to counteract COVID-19:
- RDIF and partners have launched the production of the unique Russian-Japanese EMG diagnostic system, which generates results in 30 minutes with a very high accuracy in both stationary and unmatched portable mini-laboratories. The Japan Bank for International Cooperation has joined the project through the Russia-Japan Investment Fund;
- RDIF and the ChemRar Group have produced the first batch of Favipiravir, a drug that has proven effective in the treatment of infected patients in China and in clinical trials in Russia. Preparations are currently underway for the mass production of the drug;
- RDIF has launched a project to diagnose and detect pneumonia, including that caused by coronavirus, using CT scans combined with the Russian-UAE artificial intelligence (AI) technology developed jointly by Group 42 (G42), RDIF and Medscan Group;
- RDIF has provided support to the public in observing the lockdown restrictions and self-isolation regime, driving a several-fold increase in telemedicine consultations via the Doctis service, as well as in access and subscriptions to the ivi online media library, delivery of Elementaree meal kits and demand for products and services of other RDIF portfolio companies;
- The Mother and Child Group, an RDIF's portfolio company, has repurposed its largest clinical hospital Lapino to treat patients with COVID-19 symptoms.
- RDIF was one of the initiators of the Alliance against coronavirus, which also includes the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RUIE), Yandex, Mail.ru Group and the Rossiya Segodnya international news agency. RDIF is actively involved in key initiatives and charity projects.
Further information can be found at rdif.ru
ChemRar Group unites R&D service and investment companies in the field of innovative pharmaceuticals for the development and commercialization of innovative medicines, diagnostics, preventive care and new treatments of life-threatening diseases in Russia and abroad.
ChemRar Group celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2020. Throughout its history, the company has maintained and improved the achievements and quality of its medical chemistry and has built a team of world-class employees and scientists. Their efforts have made ChemRar one of the global leaders in the industry today.
Further information can be found at https://en.chemrar.ru/
For additional information contact:
Russian Direct Investment Fund
Tel: +7 495 644 34 14, ext. 2395
Mobile: +7 916 110 31 41
Andrew Leach / Maria Shiryaevskaya
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7796 4133
Mobile +7 9262067871