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Photo Credit: Egor Aleyev/TASS

Russia may start exports of Avifavir, an anti-COVID-19 drug, after the domestic demand is satisfied, Chief Executive Officer of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) Kirill Dmitriev and First Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Sergey Tsyb told an online conference on Monday.

“As Russia’s demand is satisfied, we suggest that exports may also be started. There are many requests from Middle Eastern countries, from Latin American countries. Russia may become an exporter of that drug,” Dmitriev said.

“In the future the drug has export potential as well, from the viewpoint of helping people in other countries that need high-tech products for tackling the coronavirus infection today,” Tsyb said, adding that there are several drugs to tackle particularly the coronavirus in the portfolio of Russian companies, which are undergoing the clinical trials stage.

“The creation and introduction of such products as Avifavir demonstrates that the Russian pharmaceutical industry, Russian scientists, Russia’s scientific and technological potential are becoming globally competitive,” First Deputy Minister noted.

Avifavir produced by a joint venture of RDIF and ChemRar Group is the first Russian Favipiravir-based drug, which has been used in Japan since 2014 against severe forms of influenza.

According to the results of ten days of clinical trials, Avifavir demonstrated safety with no new or previously unreported side effects detected. Efficacy of the drug is above 80%, a criterion for a drug with high antiviral activity. The start of the final stage of Avifavir clinical trials involving 330 patients was approved by the Russian Ministry of Health on May 21, 2020.