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Biocon  /  The 10-c Answer to Diabetes

Despite the capital-intensive nature of insulin production, Biocon has succeeded in expanding access to insulin therapy in India and key global markets by pursuing an innovation strategy that is rooted in affordability.

Living with diabetes is challenging. Emotionally, physically and financially. From monitoring one’s blood sugar levels regularly and sticking to a strict diet to exercising daily and adhering to therapy, the challenges are numerous. Uncontrolled blood sugar can result in high blood pressure, kidney disease, blurred vision and nerve damage, which add to the emotional and financial burden. Studies show that early insulin intervention can reduce the risk of developing diabetes-related complications and improve quality of life. Despite the availability of insulin for nearly a century, this essential therapy is still not universally accessible. At Biocon, we have committed ourselves to addressing this glaring inequality in access to insulin because of its prohibitive pricing. Our mission is rooted in the belief that a lifesaving medicine like insulin cannot be priced out of reach of those who need it on a daily basis in both the developing and the developed worlds. To reinforce our commitment to enable universal access, Biocon is making recombinant human insulin available at less than 10 cents per day in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). At 10 cents a day, our insulin could be a game changer for patients who currently pay almost three times the price for the therapy in LMICs. The current US list price in retail is over US$ 5 / day.

Managing Diabetes With Affordable Insulin

Diabetes has assumed pandemic proportions, affecting nearly half a billion people of which 80% live in LMICs. Since diabetes is a chronic condition causing severe complications, insulin treatment – and the costs involved – is a lifelong undertaking. The affordability of insulin therapy thus becomes a critical factor in disease control both at the individual and societal levels.

Biocon has had long experience of addressing the large global unmet need for high quality, affordable insulins that provide cost-effective alternatives to expensive branded products. In 2004, Biocon developed a rh-insulin using its proprietary Pichia based fermentation technology and introduced it to patients in India at a disruptive price point, compelling MNC insulin makers to drop prices of their brands. Since then, it has cumulatively supplied over 2 billion doses of human insulin so far to patients globally. In multiple countries like Mexico and Malaysia, most of the insulin-requiring diabetics take Biocon’s insulin.

The Company’s rh-Insulin has been approved in over 40 countries and commercialised in countries like India, Mexico and Malaysia, while Insulin Glargine has been approved in over 60 markets and commercialised in countries like India, Australia, EU, Japan, UAE, South Korea, Mexico and Malaysia.

Despite the capital-intensive nature of insulin production, Biocon has succeeded in expanding access to insulin therapy in India and key global markets by pursuing an innovation strategy that is rooted in affordability. Biocon has one of the largest insulin manufacturing capacities in the world, which it is using to shift the access paradigm for insulin worldwide.

We are giving patients, physicians and payers a wider option of treatment choices, enhanced access to insulin and improved diabetes management

Our mission is to provide affordable access to insulin therapy to ‘one in five’ insulin dependent patients across the world.

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2004 Biocon developed a rh-insulin using its proprietary Pichia based fermentation technology and introduced it to patients in India

2009 Expands insulins basket with the launch of Insulin Glargine (Basalog®) in India

2016 Insulin Glargine pen for people with diabetes launched in Japan as the first biosimilar from India.

2018 Semglee®* (Insulin Glargine) approved; Commercialised in Europe by our partner

2019 Cumulatively supplied over 2 billion doses of human insulin to patients globally since 2004

(* Partnered with Mylan)

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