Shah Alam, 15 September 2020 – Home-grown and rapidly evolving pharmaceutical industry player, Duopharma Biotech Berhad (“Duopharma Biotech” or the “Company”) through its wholly owned subsidiary, Duopharma HAPI Sdn Bhd will soon embark on manufacturing its second oncology drug at its first in Malaysia, Highly Potent Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (HAPI) Plant in Shah Alam, to help address the paucity of affordable alternatives to treat cancer.

The HAPI plant, according to Leonard Ariff Abdul Shatar, the Group Managing Director of Duopharma Biotech, will produce various oncology drugs that are clinically proven to fight against many types of cancers.

Duopharma Biotech Group is embracing innovation and technology to serve patients who need specific and targeted therapies that can be produced by our new state-of-the-art HAPI Plant, he added.

The HAPI Plant is equipped to produce a wide portfolio of cancer medicines which will help to treat amongst others, breast cancer, lung cancer, colorectal cancer, cervical cancer, and blood cancer – making it the first cancer medicine manufacturing facility in Malaysia. The facility is also fully capable of producing medicines to treat hormonal imbalance and highly potent medicines for cardiovascular, central nervous system and musculoskeletal diseases.

In the first quarter of this year, Duopharma Biotech successfully manufactured and commercialised its first product, (letrozole) which is prescribed for breast cancer treatment.

Leonard Ariff revealed that the HAPI plant’s next product will be the first locally manufactured drug to treat chronic myeloid leukemia for both adults and children.

The medicine which will be produced locally is targeted to be commercialised in due course. Available at a much more affordable price, this medicine produced at the HAPI plant will enable patients especially in the low and middle income categories to have access to the treatment.

“Affordability and access issues are especially prevalent amongst the financially challenged and there is evidence that out-of-pocket costs for such prescription drugs to treat chronic diseases not only impose a financial burden but result in reduction in medication adherence leading to worsening health outcomes.

“Our objective in establishing the HAPI plant in Malaysia is premised on a mission to offer medication to address the lack of alternatives while delivering equitable and affordable access to prescription medications. The plant will also provide some level of self-sufficiency to the country in terms of the specific oncology medications.

“We hope by maximising the value of public and private pharmaceutical expenditure on health we would be able to ensure that the clinicians and patients choice on their treatment would be maintained,” he added.

The HAPI facility is a Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certified plant by the Malaysian National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA). This ensures that production and quality control consistently meet the highest standards.

Duopharma Biotech is also currently engaging with pharmaceutical companies across the globe to bring high-end technologies and allowing for technology transfer which enables them to locally manufacture high-value drugs. This will further strengthen the company’s position as the leading pharmaceutical player in Malaysia, and achieve its target of being a leading pharmaceutical company in Southeast Asia.

“We are widening our product portfolio in offering not just oncology medicines but also psychotropic drugs, which is an emerging market in Malaysia.

“Duopharma Biotech has already established a strong presence in the anti-psychotic sector and is collaborating with our partners to bring in more locally manufactured psychotropic drugs into our pipelines due to its huge market potential,” add Leonard Ariff.