Fujifilm expands production of influenza antiviral drug Avigan for COVID-19
16 April 2020 -

FUJIFILM Pharmaceuticals U.S.A. Inc reported on Wednesday that FUJIFILM Corporation has ramped up its manufacturing capacity at FUJIFILM Toyama Chemical Co Ltd to increase production of its influenza antiviral drug Avigan Tablet (generic name: favipiravir) for treating patients with COVID-19.

In conjunction, Fujifilm is allocating additional capacity at its Japanese FUJIFILM Wako Pure Chemical Co Ltd facility for production of pharmaceutical intermediates used in the manufacture Avigan. The company has also established partnerships with domestic and overseas companies for various manufacturing processes to source raw materials and pharmaceutical substances.

Avigan selectively inhibits viral RNA polymerase necessary for influenza virus replication. Due to this mechanism of action, Avigan may have an antiviral effect on the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.

Fujifilm expects to increase the monthly production of Avigan up to 100,000 treatment courses by July 2020, approximately 2.5 times more compared to the beginning of March, with production further increased to 300,000 treatment courses by September 2020.

The Japanese government reportedly plans to stockpile 2 million treatment courses of Avigan as part of its emergency economic package.