The Director-General, National Institute For Pharmaceutical Research and Development, NIPRD, Dr Obi Adigwe says inadequate funding ppwas hindering home grown research and development of a COVID-19 cure.
Dr Adigwe who stated this in Abuja at a media round table on Wednesday, maintained that Nigeria has the capacity to develop a COVID-19 treatment drug.
He said NIPRD’s research in phytomedicine hasidentified a drug, “Niprimune’, to be latent for the treatment of COVID-19 but lacked adequate financial support to develop the medicine.
About a year ago, we identify that this product “Niprimune” for treatment and management of COVID-19. Thailand has approved the active ingredient of this product for treatment of COVID-19…relevant funding agencies have still not supported us to the level where we would finish the science to enable us to bring this product to the fore.”
Dr Adigwe also noted that NIPRD has great potential to find solutions to most nedical problems as it has adequate man power and world class equipment.
“I say this everyday, nobody has the capacity we have here in NIPRD. I have close to 75 Masters and PHD’s in terms of manpower, all aggregated around the different value chains of phyto-medicinal development. Is it center of excellence? We’ve gotten it, ISO certification? We have it, is it for COVID-19? At least four different times, things we predicted happened.”
He advocated for the establishment of an in-country vaccine firms to respond to future pandemics.