Mon, Oct 24, 2016 | updated 02:14 PM IST

Zydus, Takeda enter into partnership to address emerging infectious diseases

Updated: Sep 20, 2016 11:24 IST

Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], Sept.20 (ANI-Businesswire India): Zydus Cadila, an innovation driven global healthcare provider and Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited today announced a partnership to tackle chikungunya, an emerging infectious disease.

The chikungunya virus is most often spread to people by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes, the same vectors that spread dengue and zika.

The broad-based agreement includes early stage development to the final commercialisation of the vaccine. There is currently no vaccine to prevent or medicine to treat chikungunya virus infection.

Chikungunya has been identified in over 60 countries in Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. After the bite of an infected mosquito, onset of illness occurs usually between four and eight days but can range from two to twelve days.

In some people, the joint pain may persist for months. People at risk for severe indications include newborns infected around the time of birth, older adults (=65 years), and people with medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease.

Since 2005, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar and Thailand have reported over 1.9 million cases1 and almost 1.3 million suspected cases of Chikungunya being recorded in the Caribbean islands, Latin American countries, and the United States of America till 2015.

Pankaj R. Patel, Chairman and Managing Director, Zydus group said, "We have always been committed to working with partners and collaborating to bring affordable therapies and bridge unmet healthcare needs. By partnering with Takeda on this very important research and development initiative and leveraging our development capabilities, we will be taking an all important step to prevent the disease burden which is highly prevalent in developing countries and causes suffering and disability."

Dr. Rahul Singhvi, Takeda Vaccines' Chief Operating Officer said, "Takeda is very pleased to work with Zydus Cadila. We are always open to tackling the world's most urgent and neglected unmet medical needs together with partners. Our belief is that chikungunya can be prevented by vaccines, and that a vaccine might be licensed more quickly if we can accelerate development with this Zydus partnership."

Dr. Singhvi added, "Takeda is at the center of important vaccine-related activities in global health and emerging infectious diseases. This is another demonstration of Takeda's major commitment to the health of children in developing countries and elsewhere around the world."

Terms of the agreement are not disclosed, but it is expected that this partnership will boost access to medicines in the future through this novel partnership.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), chikungunya virus is transmitted to people by mosquitoes. The most common symptoms of chikungunya virus infection are fever and joint pain. Other symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash. Outbreaks have occurred in countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Indian and Pacific Oceans. In late 2013, chikungunya virus was found for the first time in the Americas on islands in the Caribbean. There is a risk that the virus will be imported to new areas by infected travelers. There is currently no vaccine to prevent or medicine to treat chikungunya virus infection. (ANI-Businesswire India)