Hyderabad-based Shantha Biotechnics, a subsidiary of French pharmaceutical company Sanofi, is setting up an insulin manufacturing plant at an investment of Rs 460 crore near here. The plant is expected to be operational by 2019.
The facility will manufacture Insuman, a human insulin product from the portfolio of Sanofi’s diabetes treatments. This will be the French global pharma major’s second Insuman manufacturing plant in the world. Chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao today laid the foundation stone for the plant. The project is coming up in his home constituency of Gajwel in the neighbouring Medak district.
KI Varaprasada Reddy, founder and chairman of Shantha, said this would be a new technology facility where insulin would be manufactured in cartridges. According to him, it has a capacity to ramp up manufacturing volumes to 60 million cartridges a year in 2-3 years of commercial manufacturing. The cartridges manufactured in this plant will be priced at Rs 11 per day. Sanofi India launched Insuman cartridges in 2011.
Sanofi Pasteur Holding acquired Shantha in 2009 as the homegrown vaccine maker’s products complement the former’s portfolio. Four of Shantha’s licensed vaccines, including pentavalent vaccine (Shan5), are WHO-qualified. Further, Sanofi Pasteur and Shantha are also developing a new paediatric combination vaccine based on Shan5 paediatric vaccine incorporating Sanofi Pasteur’s inactivated polio vaccine in order to secure polio eradication, according to the company.
“The technology transfer and collaborative effort within the Sanofi group underline our commitment to investing in ‘Make in India’ programme and address the growing epidemic of diabetes in India,” Sanofi’s India managing director and vice president of south Asia operations Shailesh Ayyangar said on this occasion.
Sanofi’s new facility is targeted at the growing Type 2 diabetes in India, which is home to an estimated 65 million diabetic cases out of the 382 million cases globally. The number in India is expected to touch 109 million by 2035. The plant would meet both the local and international demand.
Insuman is used to treat diabetes, both Type 1 and 2. It is produced from recombinant technology in Sanofi laboratories and is licensed in 90 countries for use.