Report on the St Petersburg International Forum on Pharmacy

16 May 2012

The IPhEB International Forum on pharmacy, medical industry and biotechnology was successfully held in St Petersburg last month, having gathered over 1,000 participants: heads of federal and regional authorities defining the industry development policy, the largest higher educational institutions and research centres of the country, as well as companies from 18 regions of Russia and 15 countries.

The IPhEB 2012 Forum became one of the largest Russian events in the scientific, technical and innovations sphere. The event was mainly focused on elaboration of effective solutions for rapid development of Russian pharmacy and medicine, creation, production and introduction of innovative, high quality medications into clinical practice in order to promote realization of state and private initiatives for development of this extremely important sphere.

The Forum, held with active support and participation of the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade, St. Petersburg Government, has gathered heads of executive authorities of all levels, rectors of the largest domestic higher educational institutions and research centers, top managers and experts of pharmacy companies, including MSD, Novartis, Novo-Nordisk, Stada, Philips, AstraZeneca and others.

Medical radiology was the topic of the first day. A separate conference was devoted to this subject. The conference plenary session Medical radiology in Russia: trends and development prospects — was chaired by Daria Ryzhkova, Deputy director for educational activities of the Russian Scientific Center of Radiology and Surgical Technology of the Federal Agency of hi-tech medical aid. Creation of radiological cluster in Gatchina in 2015 became one of the main focuses of attention at the discussions.

 Arkady Stolpner, Board Chairman of Treatment and Diagnosi Berezin’ Group, assesses the project opportunities quite optimistically: I think, we will see the results within several years. According to his words, it will take from five to seven years. The most important task of the cluster is to develop staff preparation system.

Elena Diesendorf, Head of the nuclear physics division at Philips, presented in the topical session of the first day: Ways to improve medical radiology in Russia — Localized recovery vs. systematic development? She said that preparation of experts in radiology is one of the most important spheres of healthcare development in Russia.

Philips understands this and is currently running a project jointly with Rosatom state corporation with the aim of creating an enterprise for equipment production, discussing the opportunities to participate in staff training in cooperation with the leading higher educational institutions – National Research Nuclear University MEPHI, Federal Medical Biophysical Center named after AI Burnazyan and others. "We propose to strengthen material and technical base for training specialists, sponsor their training courses in foreign clinics, equip training classes, providing them with working stations that will be modernised regularly. We are ready to invest our own money into this process,” Elena Diesendorf informed.

The Forum business programme consisted of 13 topical sessions and master classes on innovative development of pharmaceutical and medical industry.

The plenary session National priorities in pharmaceutical industry development, held on the second day of the Forum, was opened by Georgy Poltavchenko, St. Petersburg Governor: “I am glad to welcome the participants of the International Forum which is the best site to discuss the issues of domestic pharmacy industry development. This site creates favourable conditions for a dialogue between pharmacists, business and authorities’. Georgy Poltavchenko stressed that pharmacy is not only about business, but also about work for the sake of human well-being.

Sergey Tsyb, Director of department for chemical and technological complex and bio-engineering technologies of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, in his speech summed up the intermediate results of implementing the federal target programme.

Development Strategy for Pharmaceutical and medical industry of the Russian Federation for the period until 2020 and further outlook’ as one of the most effective tools for complex industry transformation.

“St. Petersburg is demonstrating significant rates in terms of innovative development of pharmacy and medical industry. Attractive investment conditions have been created in the region. The city itself — our northern capital — traditionally possesses the most important resource for such a science-intensive industry as medicine, namely it has human capital.

"Much has been done and is still being done for the successful formation of one of the first innovative medical and pharmaceutical clusters in Russia, which presupposes the increase in shares of domestic pharmacy products, improvement of their competitiveness and export opportunities. Thus, the region has all the prerequisites for successful implementation of projects designed to create pharmaceutical enterprises as well as research and development centres within the framework of the PHARMA 2020 strategy”, Sergey Tsyb mentioned.

During a panel discussion on Optimisation of pricing strategy for vital and essential medicines: search for effective tools for sustainable development of the Russian pharmaceutical market, Dmitry Ter-Stepanov, Head of Department for Competition Development, Ministry for Economic, Development of the Russian Federation, delivered a speech.

He informed that an inter-institutional group has been created which is intended to elaborate price calculation method for new medications under supervision of Deputy Minister Mikhail Oseevsky. He said that current methods have become outdated and if we keep using them, it may result in erosion of the whole medications groups from the market, mainly the cheap ones, and the fact that the manufacturer has no opportunity to re-register the price leads to the polymorphism in drugs (even the smallest change in the name of pharmaceuticals by adding another definition or a slight replacement of the preparation components allows to register a new price).

The round table Promotion of R&D in the sphere of pharmacy and biotechnology attracted special attention of the participants. Moderator Vitaly Prutskiy, Head of R&D Information in Russia and Eastern Europe, Head of Centre for bio-informatics and predictive medicine in St. Petersburg, set an active tempo to the discussion, having told how quickly — "it took AstraZeneca less than a year” — the company managed to open a Center in St. Petersburg, which will solve no only regional tasks but also will serve the whole world using local resources. Participants of this round table focused their attention on the opportunities and ambitions of Russian R&D market.

Alexander Garabadiu, Vice-Rector for research of St. Petersburg Technological Institute, told about the experience of this university in creating a modern laboratory designed to develop the latest pharmaceuticals, provoking the same wave of optimism.

The laboratory is headed by Gennaro Melino, a famous Professor of Molecular Biology, University of Rome. According to the agreement, he has to spend four months a year in St. Petersburg, whereas university students will be training for 5-6 months not only in Italy, but also in England, Belgium, Germany and France. 140 million rubles have been allotted to the project, most of this sum will be spent to purchase modern equipment.

At the topical session International and regional cooperation in the field of pharmacy and biotechnology, held on the second day of the Forum, Zakhar Golant, Deputy Chairman of Committee for Economic Development, Industrial Policy and Trade of St. Petersburg Government, emphasized that the improvement of international cooperation is necessary to develop the whole region, therefore the Northern capital attaches great importance to the high quality meetings and events industry.

Yury Sukhanov, Executive Director at the Association of Experts in Biomedical technologies, cell technologies and regenerative medicine, non-profit partnership ACTREMED, moderator of the session Tools to support pharmaceutical and medical biotechnologies in Russia. Outlooks for further development within the frameworks of World Trade Organisation and Customs Union, being one of the developers of the Law about Circulation of Biomedical Cell Products notes that the 'legal terrain of biomedicine is not plowed and sown. We have to be ready for significant changes in our market. It concerns not only new pharmaceuticals, but also cooperation with neighbouring countries', Yury Sukhanov emphasized.

It is for the first time that an IPhEB award in the sphere of pharmacy and biotechnology was established with the aim to promote development of the latest achievements in the sphere of pharmaceutical, biotechnological and medical technologies. The awarding ceremony and congratulations to the laureates took place during gala reception on behalf of Georgy Poltavchenko, St. Petersburg Governor on the occasion of the Forum Opening.

BIOCAD CJSC with its product Genferone Light Spray became the winner in Product of the year nomination. Dmitry Morozov, Chairman of the Board of Directors received the award. The nomination for Business project of the year was awarded to the Center of protone radiation therapy of the Center of nuclear medicine at the International Institute of Biologic Systems named after S.M. Berezin.

The award was handed to Georgy Andreev, Chief Medical Physicist of the company. The center implements modern methods of nuclear medicine in clinical treatment practice, prolongs lives of oncological patients as well. IPhEB Science, a special personal award was honoured to Elena Shpakova — a second year graduate student of RAS Institue of High-Molecular Compounds, for the best work in the 'Chemical synthesis of biologically active substances’ section.

For three working days of Business Matchmaking Center — a communication site designed to establish new business and partnership contacts — over 70 meetings were registered. The most significant negotiations were: a meeting of representative of India Ministry of pharmaceutical industry, the administration of the UBM company (Great Britain) and Zakhar Golant, Deputy Chairman of Committee for Economic Development, Industrial Policy and Trade, as well as the meeting of FinnMedi company representatives with Alexander Iova, Head of the Chair of Neurology and Neurosurgery at the Medical Academy of Post-Graduate Education. The Business Matchmaking Center became the major link between the Forum participants and the exhibitors.

Another novelty of the Forum is the Exhibition of Medical Pharmaceutical and Laboratory Equipment within the frameworks of IPhEB Forum, representing the latest achievements, products and services in the sphere of medical, pharmaceutical and biotechnological industry. The exhibition was participated by the largest Russian and foreign companies, including PHARMEXCIL (India), Favea, Khimexpert, Sartorius IRC and others. A separate exposition was formed by the companies, members of St. Petersburg pharmaceutical and medical industry cluster - Novartis, MSD Pharmaceuticals, Polysan, Samson-Med, Geropharm, LDC MIBS (Treatment and Diagnostics Center of International Institute for Biological systems) and NP Medical and ‘Pharmaceutical Projects. XXI century’.

A specialised tour took place within the frameworks of the business programme - the IPhEB Forum participants visited a new Federal Service on Surveillance in Healthcare and Social Development of the Russian Federation for medicines quality control. It is located in the four-storey building and occupies total area of 2,700 sq.m. The participants of this tour observed organisational department, analytical, microbiological and pharmacological laboratories, where 48 high-grade experts work. “You will not find such a laboratory anywhere in the city. Unique people work here”, Elena Telnova, acting as head of Roszdravnadzor, assures, “there are only three laboratories of such a high level in Russia: in Gudermes, Rostov-on-Don and Krasnoyarsk”. The plans include opening of laboratories in Moscow and other cities. Within the nearest time, a mobile express-laboratory on the basis of St. Petersburg laboratory complex for medicines quality control will start working directly on the inspection facility: pharmacies, drugstores, hospitals, clinics.

On the whole, as participants of the business programme and exhibition exposition noted, the IPhEB Forum was held successfully.
Tatiana Mamaeva, Head of Regulatory Department, National Center of Expertise for Phramaceutical Products of the Republic of Kazakhstan,
“I came from Kazakhstan to visit the Forum for the first time. I have great impressions from organisation, discussions and topics. It is undoubtedly an interesting and necessary event. The most currently important topics of the modern pharmaceutical industry, exciting for the specialists of all countries were discussed here. It is a real platform for a dialogue. I wish I could visit all the Forum events”.

Robert Rosen, Director General of Selecta (RUS) Company, Bind (RUS):
'It was a very interesting Forum. Such an event contributes a lot to the future development of science. The Forum lets us understand and find one's niche, find research and administrative resources. The Forum provides all the opportunities for future successful work. Success comes with clear purposes'.

Martin Schloh, Advisory in the sphere of pharmacy and biotechnology at PricewaterhouseCoopers:
"I would like to thank all event participants and organisers. Special thanks to the Forum interpreters. I saw energy and light in the participants’ eyes'.

Sergey Smirnov, Board Chairman of Novo Nordisk LLC:
“St. Petersburg International Forum IPhEB 'Pharmacy. Medicine. Biotechnology’ left a very favourable impression by its scale, organisation level, number of participants and topics under discussion. I learned a lot of useful information. A wonderful panel discussion has just finished, where I made a report. And yesterday a plenary session took place, where Georgy Poltavchenko, St. Petersburg Governor, Sergey Tsyb, Director of Department for chemical and technological complex and bio-engineering technologies of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, Elena Telnova, Deputy Head of Federal Service for Supervision of Healthcare and Social Development took part. Participation of such high officials also proves the Forum significance for the Russian pharmacy and biotechnology”.

In 2013 the IPhEB Forum will take place on April 22 to 24 in St. Petersburg. For more information on the coming event, please visit the official web-site








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