(Yicai Global) June 22 -- British biggest drug company GlaxoSmithKline Plc.'s latest anti-human immunodeficiency virus drug is now available for sale in China.
Tivicay, also known as dolutegravir, is an antiviral medicine that prevents the HIV virus from multiplying. It is produced by GSK's specialist HIV unit, ViiV Healthcare, and can be used to treat HIV patients 12 years and older.
GSK is trying to persuade the Chinese government to include the medicine in the nation's free antiretroviral treatment catalog, so that more patients will have access to its latest anti-HIV drug, Mr. Hervé Gisserot, senior vice president and general manager of GSK pharmaceuticals and vaccines for China/Hong Kong, told Yicai.
China reported its first HIV case in 1985 and HIV cases have been on the increase in the country since then. As of June 30 last year, China had 715,051 known cases of HIV infections and 169,300 people had died of AIDS.
China is increasing pressure on foreign drugmakers, including GSK, to slash prices in an attempt to stem the rise of healthcare costs.
GSK Global CEO Andrew Witty said last November that the combination of more affordable prices and higher sales volume is a business model that GSK should promote globally in order to achieve a win-win situation. Last month GSK announced that it would reduce the price of a Hepatitis B (CHB) medicine in China by 67 percent.