The Seoul Economic Daily published an article in Korean about the Korean vaccine industry. The article describes the growth of the Korean vaccine industry and has two favorable mentions of IVI’s role. Shown below is a translation of the article. –Ed.
Korean vaccines expanding global territory
– GC Green Cross set up R&D center in US, accelerating efforts to reemerge as ‘vaccine powerhouse’
– SK Bioscience succeeds in commercialization of the world’s second Shingles vaccine
– LG Chem gearing up for clinical trials of combination vaccines, while actively cooperating with IVI
April 1, 2019, The Seoul Economic Daily
Korean companies are stepping up efforts to advance into the global health market with Korean vaccines. The momentum is proving to be robust. Despite being latecomers, they have been making major achievements such as the development of the world’s second Shingles vaccine. Thanks to Korea’s hosting of the International Vaccine Institute, vaccine export to developing countries and international organizations is also picking up speed.
According to industry sources, major domestic pharmaceutical and biotech companies including GC Green Cross, SK Bioscience, LG Chem, and CJ Healthcare are targeting the global vaccine market. Cooperation with the International Vaccine Institute, headquartered in Seoul, is also increasing. Consequently, they are supplying Korean vaccines to UNICEF, while simultaneously increasing their international visibility and profitability.
GC Green Cross, a time-honored vaccine manufacturing leader, has started phase 3 clinical trials of a Korean tuberculosis vaccine. Although the TB vaccine is essential for the nation, Korea has been importing all demand for this vaccine due to a lack of homegrown technology to develop a vaccine locally. GC Green Cross is also focusing on the development of premium vaccines. The company established a local venture ‘Curevo’ in the US, and is developing a next-generation Shingles vaccine. The vaccine was approved for phase 1 clinical trials by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last year, and the trials are currently ongoing.
SK Bioscience succeeded in the commercialization of ‘Sky Zoster’ in 2017, the second shingles vaccine worldwide. The vaccine posted more than 30 billion won in sales in the first year of its release. With a market share exceeding 30%, it is closely following the market leader ‘Zostavax’ of MSD. SK Bioscience is currently taking steps to win licensure of ‘Sky Zoster’ in Southeast Asian countries -including Thailand, while preparing for global clinical trials as part of its strategy to export the product to the US, China and Europe. SK Bioscience is also developing a typhoid vaccine for developing countries. Phase 2 clinical trials are ongoing in Korea and Southeast Asia, and the vaccine is expected to be commercialized by 2021.
LG Chem is also spurring the development of vaccines. With a total funding of US$ 33.4 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, preparation is underway for phase 2 clinical trials of a 6-valent combination vaccine that can prevent six life-threatening diseases –namely: Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B, Meningitis, and Poliomyelitis. Prior to this, LG Chem was awarded US$ 19.5 million (about KRW 22 billion) for the development of a Polio vaccine from the Gates Foundation. The company is planning to supply vaccines to UNICEF after 2023 by using the funding to conduct clinical trials and expand vaccine production facilities.
CJ Healthcare is also developing a vaccine for the prevention of hand-foot-and-mouth disease after a technology transfer from the KCDC. As there is no commercially available vaccine in Korea yet, its commercial viability is strong. Additionally, CJ Healthcare went a step further and revealed ambitions to develop the world’s first 2-valent vaccine for foot-and-mouth disease. The goal is to complete phase 1 clinical trials by 2022.
Korean companies shipped the majority of their vaccine exports to international organizations, rather than specific countries. As of 2017, Korea exported vaccines worth 194 billion won, of which the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and UNICEF accounted for a lion’s share, followed by Indonesia, Vietnam, Colombia, Malaysia and the Philippines. An industry source said, “Thanks to the International Vaccine Institute, we are able to demonstrate the superiority of our vaccines in foreign markets.”
Read the original Korean article: