GSK, Takeda and Sanofi leaders in ethical and humanitarian policies for least-developed countries

French economic-financial daily Les Echos has reported today results from an analysis by ONG Access, assessing large drugmakers’ activities in the least-developed countries, and has identified three companies showing more ethical approaches than their competitors:  France-based Sanofi, Japan-based Takeda and UK-based GlaxoSmithKline.

Among the three, GSK appears to have the largest product portfolio for the poorest countries, and the largest pipeline of investigational therapies tailored to low-income countries. GSK has a consolidated policy granting to people who have taken part in clinical trials access to the treatment after testing is finalized; it always commits to applying for product registration in all the countries that have taken part to clinical trials–in case of positive results. Moreover, the group led by Emma Walmsley has adopted an impressive fair-price strategy for 60% of its products.

Importantly, GSK has entered into non-exclusive license agreements at favorable conditions for two key AIDS products, which boost the development of generic drugs. GSK group is also one of the first to respond to health emergencies, by cooperating with NGOs and the WHO.

As for Takeda group, it is increasing its commitment in the least-developed countries in the world: it has recently adjusted the price of 10% of its drugs to the income of those countries; moreover, it is part of Pat Informed platform, in which part of its patents is available to foster the development of generic drugs.

As far as donation is concerned, Sanofi takes the lead: the French group has always responded to major health emergencies–such as recent floods in India and landslides in Peru, working with the Peruvian Red Cross; additionally, Sanofi is involved in long-term donation programs aimed at eliminating some diseases, such as sleeping sickness.

Sanofi’s pipeline boasts as many as 8 potential vaccines, 4 of which co-developed with NGOs such as Medicines for Malaria Venture and DNDi. The company only conducts clinical trials in countries in which it plans to market its molecules afterwards and adjusts 30% of its products’ prices to poor countries’ incomes.  Sadly, Sanofi is not involved in the Pat Informed initiative for generic drug development.

(Source Les Echos)