Mumbai: Wyeth Ltd, the Indian subsidiary of the $20 billion multinational drug maker Wyeth, has introduced its novel antibiotic injection Tygacil in India in a bid to cater to growing demand for a product that can address drug-resistant bacterial infections. Instances of such infections have been on the rise and hospitals across India report a 70% increase in the number of cases.
The drug, known as Tigecycline in generic terms, is indicated for use in complicated drug-resistant bacterial skin infections and complicated intra-abdominal infections including appendicitis, infected burns, abscesses, deep soft tissue infections, and infected ulcers. The new treatment for drug-resistant bacterial infection from Wyeth will cost a patient around Rs6,000 a day. The drug needs to be administered to patients twice a day.
According to Shilpa Patil, medical director, Wyeth, Tygacil is the first broad-spectrum antibiotic in this space that will address the huge unmet need of anti-bacterial treatment.
According to Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education (PGI) in Chandigarh, the incidence of drug-resistant bacterial infections are now as high as 50% of all infections in India. The average incidence ranges from 10% to 30% of all patients admitted to the intensive care units (ICUs) of hospitals. Such infections claim the lives of a large number of people every year, says Hospital Infection Society (HIS) of India. Each ICU associated infection adds 5 to 10 days to the patient’s recovery time in the hospital, often involving use of antibiotics costing Rs3,000 to Rs5,000 per day.
In another study by PGI on hospital-acquired infections in a burn unit at a tertiary care referral centre in North India, drug resistant infections accounted for 75% of deaths.
“The medical community is constantly looking for new ways to treat serious infections,” said Patil. “Unfortunately, many antibiotics which are used against a broad range of bacteria are now losing effectiveness,” she added.
Inadequate infection control and shortfall in hygiene and public health are driving resistance in developing countries.
Tygacil was first approved in the US in July 2005; since then it has been launched in 33 countries in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America. This is the fourth product launched by Wyeth in India from its globally patented new invention portfolio since 2006.
The company previously launched Enbrel for rheumatoid arthritis, Prevnar vaccine for invasive pneumococcal disease and another antidepressant brand in India in 2006.