May 01, 2016
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ViiV Healthcare, MPP increase Tivicay access in lower middle-income nations

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The Medicines Patent Pool and ViiV Healthcare announced the expansion of their current licensing agreement to increase Tivicay access in all lower middle-income countries where HIV is widespread, according to a press release.

“This is great news for communities battling the epidemic … specifically for Armenia, Moldovo, Morocco and Ukraine where an estimated 270,000 people live with [HIV],” Greg Perry, executive director of the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP), said in the release. “We congratulate ViiV Healthcare for taking this key step in expanding our already broad license.”

The expansion was made after ViiV Healthcare’s majority shareholder GlaxoSmithKline announced its plan to broaden licensing for lower middle-income countries, the release said. With the new agreement, adult formulations of Tivicay (dolutegravir, ViiV Healthcare) are licensed in 92 developing countries, including 59 middle-income nations. Countries without patents are able to obtain generic products from MPP sub-licensees, according to the release.

In 2014, ViiV Healthcare granted MPP with two nonexclusive dolutegravir licenses for adults and children that permit generic manufacturers to combine dolutegravir with other drugs for fixed-dose combinations. Nine generic manufacturers have signed MPP sub-licenses to date and are developing the treatment.

ViiV Healthcare has worked with the Medicines Patent Pool for many years, and we are pleased to continue our work with the organization to further improve access to innovative medicines to address the burden of HIV,” Dominique Limet, MD, CEO of ViiV Healthcare, said in the release. “It is also a great testament to the success we have had working with the MPP that GSK is now looking at expanding this collaboration for access to medicines beyond HIV treatments.”

Dolutegravir was recommended as an alternative first-line treatment for adults by WHO in 2015. According to the release, the medication has a good barrier against resistance and is effective and tolerable at very small doses. It can be administered to treatment-naive patients and those who have developed resistance to their current regimen.

Disclosures: Perry is the executive director of the Medicines Patent Pool, and Limet is employed by ViiV Healthcare.