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China selects Cuban drug to fight Coronavirus

CUBAN medication Interferon alpha has been selected among drugs to combat the Coronavirus outbreak.

Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel noted the Chinese government’s determined efforts to confront the coronavirus (2019-NCOV) epidemic, with positive results now becoming evident, including the recovery of more than 1,500 patients.

President Díaz-Canel tweeted: “Interferon alpha 2B: Cuban drug used in China against Coronavirus. Our support to the Chinese government and people in their efforts to combat the coronavirus,” while noting the use of an anti-viral product from the country’s biotechnology industry.

According to Granma, the drug, IFNrec, is one of about 30 medications selected by the Chinese National Health Commission to treat the respiratory condition.

And in statements to Cuban television Dr Luis Herrera Martinez, the scientific and commercial advisor to the head of BioCubaFarma, China’s selection of the Cuban drug was based on effectiveness shown previously against viruses with characteristics similar to those of novel Coronavirus.

“It has the advantage, in situations like these, of functioning as a protective mechanism, preventing patients from getting worse, reaching a severe stage, with death as the outcome,” the specialist explained.

Dr Herrera noted that Cuba shared the technology to produce the drug some years ago, with the opening of the ChangHeber joint Chinese-Cuban facility in the town of Changchun, Jilin Province. This plant makes “the same product we do,” he noted, “with exactly the same technology, meeting quality standards approved by Chinese and Cuban regulatory authorities.”

The Cuban embassy in China reported on its Twitter account, “The Chinese-Cuban ChangHeber plant in Jilin has been producing Interferon alpha (IFNrec) with the use of Cuban technology since the first day of the Lunar New Year. The Chinese Health Commission has selected our product among those used in the fight against Coronavirus.”

Over one thousand people have died since the Coronavirus outbreak began in Wuhan late last year.
Over 42,000 cases have been reported around the world.

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