MISSISSAUGA, ON, Nov. 21, 2014 /CNW/ - This year's prestigious Canadian Prix Galien for Innovative Product Award has been presented to Esbriet® (pirfenidone), a medicine used to treat idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). It is the only medication approved in Canada with a specific IPF indication and is approved for mild to moderate IPF in adults.
IPF is a progressive, debilitating and ultimately fatal lung disease with no known cause. It is characterized predominantly by fibrosis (scarring) of the alveoli (air sacs) in the lungs. In patients with IPF, the lung tissue becomes scarred. Over time, as the scarring becomes thicker and more widespread, the lungs lose their ability to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream. The disease is more common in men than women and is usually diagnosed between the ages of 40 and 80 years. Based on data from the US and Europe, it is estimated that 5,000 to 8,000 Canadians suffer from IPF, with 3,000 to 5,000 having mild to moderate disease, and 3,000 Canadians die each year from the disease.
Esbriet® was developed by InterMune, Inc., a biotechnology company that was recently internationally acquired by Roche.
"We are honoured the Prix Galien has recognized the important role Esbriet® can play in treating many Canadian patients living with IPF, a disease that has limited treatment options and a poor prognosis," says Ronnie Miller, President and Chief Executive Officer, Roche Canada. "As a company, we are committed to advancing science that brings a benefit to patients, whether that happens through our own productive pipeline or mergers with companies such as InterMune."
"We are humbled and proud to have received the acknowledgement, and to have been of service to patients and healthcare providers," says Michael Cloutier, President and General Manager, InterMune Canada.
The Prix Galien for Innovative Product Award recognizes a pharmaceutical product whose efficacy, safety and innovation contribute to enhancing the quality of life of Canadians. For more information, visit eng.prix-galien-canada.com
Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is a leader in research-focused healthcare with combined strengths in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. Roche is the world's largest biotech company with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, virology, inflammation, metabolism and CNS. Roche is also the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics, tissue-based cancer diagnostics and a pioneer in diabetes management. Roche's personalized healthcare strategy aims at providing medicines and diagnostic tools that enable tangible improvements in the health, quality of life and survival of patients. In 2011, Roche had over 80,000 employees worldwide and invested over 8 billion Swiss francs in R&D. Genentech, United States, is a wholly owned member of the Roche Group. Roche has a majority stake in Chugai Pharmaceutical, Japan. Roche Canada was founded in 1931. The company employs approximately 900 people across the country, with its pharmaceuticals head office located in Mississauga, Ontario, and diagnostics division based in Laval, Quebec. Roche Canada is actively involved in local communities, investing in charitable organizations and partnering with healthcare institutions across the country. For more information, visit www.rochecanada.com.
SOURCE: Roche Canada
For further information: Nancy Zorzi, Roche Canada, 905 542 6854, [email protected]