Condoms coated with the microbicide VivaGel to prevent sexully tarnsmitted infections including HIV may soon hit global markets.
Starpharma Holdings Limited announced the grant of first of its patent specifically for the VivaGel coated condom in Russia.
Starpharma has also filed patents for VivaGel coated condoms in major markets including the USA, Canada, Europe, China, India and Japan, the company said in a press release.
VivaGel (SPL7013 Gel), a vaginal microbicide designed to prevent the transmission of STIs, including HIV and genital herpes.
In September 2008 Starpharma signed a full licence agreement with SSL International plc to develop a VivaGel coated condom. SSL manufactures and sells Durex condoms, the market-leading condom brand worldwide.
Both the VivaGel coated condom and the VivaGel standalone gel are already protected by a portfolio of granted VivaGel patents in major markets. In the case of this grant in Russia it provides coverage for the coated condom until at least 2026.
“This is an important milestone in the commercialisation of the VivaGel coated condom,” said Dr Jackie Fairley, CEO Starpharma. “Although each patent office works according to slightly different criteria, we consider this successful grant to be a very encouraging sign more widely. Additionally, protection in Russia is very valuable in its own right as Starpharma’s commercial partner SSL has the leading position in the Russian condom market.”
SSL International plc holds approximately 40 per cent of the global branded condom market and is the owner of Durex, the number one global condom brand. In addition to the coated condom, Starpharma is also developing VivaGel as a stand-alone vaginal microbicide to prevent the transmission of STIs, including HIV and genital herpes, and for the treatment of Bacterial Vaginosis.
Starpharma Holdings Limited is a world leader in the development of dendrimer technology for pharmaceutical, life-science and other applications. SPL has two operating companies, Starpharma Pty Ltd in Melbourne, Australia and DNT, Inc in the USA. Products based on SPL’s dendrimer technology are already on the market in the form of diagnostic elements and laboratory reagents through licence arrangements with partners including Siemens and Merck KgA.