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Local Companies to Produce Biological Drugs

The Jordan Food and Drug Administration (JFDA) is studying requests by local drug manufacturers to produce biological medicines, a JFDA official said Monday.

According to JFDA Director General Mohammad Rawashdeh, all drugs currently manufactured in Jordan are chemical-based pharmaceuticals, adding that no licences have been given for the production of biological medicines.

He noted that the requirements for biological medicines are more demanding and complex than chemical-based drugs.

“Biological medicines are produced using a living system or organism. This means that the manufacturing process is more difficult,” Rawashdeh explained.

He added that pending the administration’s review, two manufacturers may start producing biological drugs in the next two-to-three months.

“We are currently studying their potential and expertise, as we cannot compromise quality,” the JFDA director said.

Rawashdeh claimed that the manufacture of local biological medicines could lead to high-quality drugs at prices lower than those which are currently being imported. He added that the manufacturers are looking to produce insulin due to the high incidence of in the Kingdom.

According to the latest statistics released by the National Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Genetics, diabetes prevalence in the Kingdom stood at 7.5 per cent in 2005 and is expected to reach 30 per cent by 2050. The rise is mainly attributed to unhealthy lifestyles and food choices.

Around 70 per cent of all deaths in Jordan are related to diabetes, while 75 per cent of hospital admissions are due to diabetes, the centre recently stated.

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