10 December 2014

Consortium wins ‘silver medal’ at 2014 Corporate Engagement Awards

The Pediatric Praziquantel Consortium was shortlisted and won the ‘silver’ medal for ‘best management of a programme’ at the prestigious 2014 Corporate Engagement Awards (CEA).

The award category recognizes ‘those organizations that most effectively carry out a campaign, project, programme or sponsorship activity’, with emphasis placed on strong leadership and strategy. CEA is a high profile annual event that has honored the best in corporate sponsorships, partnerships and corporate social responsibility over the last three years.

Founded in July 2012, the Pediatric Praziquantel Consortium was the first ever international, non-profit, public-private partnership designed to develop, register, manufacture and launch a pediatric praziquantel formulation suitable to treat schistosomiasis in pre-school age children (from 3 months to 6 years old). This high-risk age group accounts for about 10% of the more than 240 million people already infected with schistosomiasis worldwide.

The program has rapidly progressed. Under Merck's program leadership and management, and project coordination by TI Pharma, the Consortium has capitalized on expertise from Astellas, Merck, the Swiss Tropical & Public Health Institute, Simcyp and Farmanguinhos to develop orally dispersible formulation candidates of the existing ‘gold standard’ drug praziquantel. Upon successful completion of the pre-clinical phase, a clinical development strategy has been defined, and the first Phase I clinical trial has recently been initiated. The Consortium has also worked hard to raise the attention on what is still a major neglected disease, with extensive press coverage ranging from Wall Street Online to Brazil Business Today and Bio Technology News.