PARIS, April 25, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sanofi (EURONEXT: SAN and NYSE: SNY) announced on World Malaria Day that 300 million treatments of anti-malarial ASAQ Winthrop ® have been delivered in Africa since the medication became available in 2007.
"Beyond the therapeutic and industrial innovation of this medication, the real success of this project is in the social innovation," said Dr. Robert Sebbag, Vice President, Access to Medicines, Sanofi. " By forgoing a patent on this treatment and committing to a tiered pricing model, with prices which can reach "no profit-no loss" levels for the public sector and major international health organizations, Sanofi and the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) took a bold step that has improved access to antimalarial treatments."
In line with the WHO guidelines, which recommend the use of Artemisinin-based Combination Therapy (ACT) for the treatment of malaria, ASAQ Winthrop ® combines artesunate and amodiaquine in a fixed-dose combination, enabling better adherence to treatment and reducing the risk of resistance. ASAQ Winthrop ® was developed through an innovative partnership with DND i, an independent not-for-profit foundation.Manufactured by Sanofi at its Casablanca plant in Morocco, ASAQ Winthrop ® is now registered in 33 countries, 30 of them in Africa. It is easy to use (once-daily dosing) and is available at a price of less than US$1 for adults and US$0.50 for children, for a full three-day treatment regimen. Through partnerships with African National Malaria Control Programs, Sanofi is working with local experts and other non-governmental organizations on educational programs and materials aimed at fighting malaria on all fronts, from prevention to diagnosis and treatment. One such program, the "Schoolchildren Against Malaria" initiative has reached more than 3.6 million children across nine African countries through games, theatre competitions and related TV programs. Malaria is the world's most common and deadliest parasitic disease. According to the latest data released by the World Health Organization (WHO) in December 2013, 207 million cases and 627,000 deaths were reported in 2012, 90% of them in Africa. Most deaths occur among children living in Africa, where a child dies every minute from malaria. Beyond being a major public health issue, malaria also weighs heavily on the finances of affected families and the economies of endemic countries. Early diagnosis and treatment of malaria can help reduce disease severity and transmission, and prevent death.