GlaxoSmithKline and WHO sign agreement
Press Release WHO/10 2 March 2001
GLAXOSMITHKLINE AND WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION SIGN AGREEMENT TO
DEVELOP A NEW TREATMENT FOR MALARIA
Source: International Public HealthWatch
GlaxoSmithKline and the World Health Organization (WHO) today an-
nounce that they have signed an agreement for the development of a
new treatment for malaria called LAPDAP.
LAPDAP, a product that combines two existing anti-malarial compounds
chlorproguanil and dapsone, is a potential life-saving medicine. The
aim of the agreement is to develop LAPDAP as an effective oral treat-
ment for uncomplicated malaria, primarily for use in Sub-Saharan Af-
rica, but also in other regions of the world where this may be appro-
priate. To date, clinical trials in Sub-Saharan Africa have demon-
strated that LAPDAP is effective in the treatment of uncomplicated
malaria including malaria resistant to other standard first line
therapies such as chloroquine and sulphadoxine/pyrimethamine (SP).
LAPDAP will be made available at a preferential price for public
health programmes. The medicine is already entering its final phase
of development and could be available in some African countries as
early as next year.
Both partners have contributed towards the costs of product develop-
ment and have set up a joint team to oversee the development of the
product. Other important supporters of this initiative include the UK
Department for International Development (DfID) and the University of
"GlaxoSmithKline firmly believes that the complex issues associated
with meeting the healthcare needs of developing countries will only
be resolved through collaborative effort," said Jean-Pierre Garnier,
Chief Executive Officer, GlaxoSmithKline.
"The LAPDAP programme further demonstrates this new company's deter-
mination to play its part in improving healthcare world-wide and in
finding innovative and practical ways of providing much needed new
medicines to people in developing countries."
Dr Gro Harlem Brundtland, Director General of the World Health Or-
ganization said: "Drug resistance means that large populations in
many parts of the world are without protection from malaria. LAPDAP
will be an important help in reducing the burden of malaria among
those living in Sub-Saharan Africa and elsewhere. This agreement
shows that public-private partnerships can achieve important practi-
cal results. It is an important collaboration not only because it
will bring a new drug to the market, but also because it includes a
price structure that aims at making the drug affordable for those who
WHO, by means of its UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Re-
search and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), is arranging and pro-
viding considerable financial support for clinical trials of LAPDAP.
In addition, WHO is making available its technical expertise, espe-
cially in the area of malaria clinical trials, to the development
team. TDR's expertise and the knowledge and experience of the WHO-led
"Roll Back Malaria" partnership will also be available as the pro-
gramme proceeds beyond regulatory approval.
GlaxoSmithKline will be responsible for product registrations and
manufacture of LAPDAP. The company will also commercialise the prod-
uct in the private sector according to standard local market prac-
The UK Department for International Development (DfID) provided fund-
ing to advance the project while the University of Liverpool, UK, de-
vised the concept of LAPDAP in the early 1990s, and have continued to
be major contributors to the programme. The Product Development Team
is chaired by Professor Peter Winstanley of The University of Liver-
The partnership intends to extend their collaboration to develop
LAPDAP in combination with an artemisinin derivative, in order to ex-
tend further the useful life of the new medication.
Malaria is a serious, sometimes fatal, disease. At least 300 million
clinical cases occur world-wide every year, 90 percent of which are
in Africa. Every day close to 3000 people, mostly children under
five, die as a result of this disease.
Reprinted under the fair use doctrine of international copyright law:
Eberhard Wenzel MA PhD
International Public HealthWatch
School of Public Health
Meadowbrook, Qld. 4131, Australia
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