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National Summit on Quality of Biologicals held in Delhi

Discussions were held on how biological drugs have emerged as a choice of therapy along with conventional chemical drugs

The National Summit on Quality of Biologicals was held at the National Institute of Biologicals (NIB) in New Delhi. Dr Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Health Minister, Dr Bharati Pravin Pawar, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare and Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog took part in the summit through video conference.

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Dr Mandaviya noted that biological drugs have emerged as a choice of therapy along with conventional chemical drugs. The medical emergency over the past few years due to the COVID-19 pandemic has seen the biopharma and diagnostic industry prove to be strategic assets to meet the public health requirements not only of our country but globally.

Congratulating NIB for bringing multiple stakeholders in a single platform, the Union Minister said that the summit will provide a base for gap analysis in the currently prevalent quality assurance approaches in India. “It will help upgrade the infrastructure and technologies of the country’s biopharmaceuticals and in-vitro diagnostic industry and enhance its capacity to develop world-class products and promote public health,” he stated.

He also commended NIB for realising the need for trained human resources in the biopharma sector and for taking initiative towards National Skill Development Programme. He further added that NIB, Blood Cell in collaboration with NHM knowledge is providing training to postgraduate students on ‘Quality Control of Biologicals’ and providing technical assistance to blood bank officials to strengthen blood services and to develop and enhance analytical skills and technological knowledge. He urged NIB to further strengthen the training programmes to prepare qualified human resources in this particular field.

Dr Mandaviya also highlighted the need to initiate studies using state-of-the-art analytical platforms to promote the development of pharmacopeial monographs for new biologicals made from updated technologies. He said that if such products are developed indigenously, the treatments will become more affordable for the common man and also our public health system will become stronger. Industry, academia and the regulatory network will have to work together to spur the indigenous development of new biological medicines, including existing drugs for the treatment of rare and neglected diseases, innovation on new product categories such as gene therapy, stem cell therapy and personalised medicines.

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