Friday, March 20, 2020

Known for photo films, Fujifilm group can act against coronavirus

Known for its old rolls of film and photography papers, Fujifilm has adapted its business, focused on health and is one of the companies involved in the search for a drug against the new coronavirus. The drug favipiravir, also known by the trade name Avigan, presented efficient tests in the fight against coronavirus. Zhang Xinmin, an official with the Chinese ministry of science and technology, said the drug had encouraging results in clinical trials with 340 patients in Wuhan and Shenzhen. According to the tests, infected patients tested negative for the virus about four days after the start of treatment. This drug was developed in 2014 by a subsidiary of Fujifilm, Fujifilm Toyama Chemical. In China, the drug is manufactured by Zhejiang Hisun Pharmaceutical, one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the country, founded in 1956. There is still no approval from Anvisa (National Health Surveillance Agency) for the use of this product in Brazil. The drug is used in Japan to treat other varieties of flu. In 2016, this same drug was used as an emergency aid in the Ebola epidemic in Guinea. The drug still needs to undergo government approval to be used in the treatment of covid-19, as it was initially developed for the treatment of influenza. From photography to medicine The initiative shows how much Fujifilm group has transformed since its inception in 1934. After the 2000s, the Fujifilm group went through a drastic crisis, losing its main photographic film business, as the market scanned. At the time, photographic films and photo printing papers accounted for 60% of Fujifilm's revenue and two-thirds of its profit. In ten years, the market has shrunk to a tenth of its size. The company then created a digital camera and started investing in new business units. Currently, the Fujifilm group operates in human health in prevention, diagnosis and treatment and develops intravenous medical devices, X-ray systems, endoscopes, ultrasound and imaging diagnostics devices. The group also operates in the sectors of nutritional supplements and cosmetics for skin care. The health division accounted for 43 percent of the group's total revenue in fiscal year ended March 2019, which was 2.4 trillion yen, or $21.7 billion. Only 16% of revenue came from the imaging solutions division. "The health division is the future of the company," said Mutsuki Tomono, president of Fujifilm Brazil in an interview with Exame in 2017. Fujifilm Toyama was created as a result of the merger between Fujifilm Pharma and Toyama Chemical in 2018. Toyama Chemicals aims to develop new radioactive and therapeutic drugs and those with unique mechanisms of action in the field of cancer, diseases and central nervous system infections. If the drug is indeed effective in treating the new coronavirus, Fujifilm's health division may get even bigger.
Exame - 20/03/2020 News Item translated automatically
Click HERE to see original
Other news
DATAMARK LTDA. © Copyright 1998-2020 ®All rights reserved.Av. Brig. Faria Lima,1993 third floor 01452-001 São Paulo/SP