The Richter Group spent HUF 40.5 billion on research and development in 2018, which amounts to 9.1 per cent of its consolidated sales revenue.
Drug research and development entails three strategic directions:
– research and development on original small molecules,
– recombinant biotechnology,
– generic product development.
Our original drug research traditionally concentrates on discovering and developing effective drugs to combat diseases of the central nervous system, focusing on the development of compounds for the treatment of negative, cognitive and positive symptoms related to psychiatric diseases. In the United States, FDA approved in September 2015 our antipsychotic drug containing cariprazine as a drug substance for the treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar maniac disorder, and after its launch in March 2016 this treatment is available for the US patients. In May 2019, the indication was further extended by FDA to bipolar depression treatment as well. The European Commission approved cariprazine as drug substance for the treatment of schizophrenia in July 2017.
At the end of 2018, besides cariprazine the Company has a research portfolio of 14 ongoing projects, two of which are in their early clinical phase. The others are in preclinical research and development phase.
Acting on the basis of the experiences accumulated in classical fermentation over the past 50 years and our advanced knowledge in molecular biology, we took a strategic decision to begin developing and manufacturing recombinant biotechnological drugs. Richter-Helm Biologics, founded jointly with HELM AG, develops and manufactures microbial protein drugs in Germany. By the end of 2009 we established a biotechnology lab and pilot facility in Budapest, and certain manufacture processes of commercial products with high intellectual and technological added value is slated to begin in 2019.
Our research work on the development of generic products involving several areas of therapy is aimed at marketing 5–7 new generic and branded drugs every year in our traditional markets.
Expansion of our highly managed Women Healthcare Portfolio is one of Richter's fundamental strategic pillar that aims to improve the quality of life of women in different age groups.
Our goal is to continue to be one of Europe's leading company in the field of Women's Healthcare and to bring new innovative products to the market where possible, especially in indications where there is a significant unmet medical need. At present, our broad gynecological portfolio covers the following indication areas: short-term and long-term contraception, infertility, menopause, gynecological infections, uterine fibroids treatment. In addition, we develop products for new therapeutic areas as well. Our portfolio is expanded with new, innovative products primarily through license-in, but at the same time, we also continue our in-house R&D activities. Richter considers it important to match market expectations by entering new areas such as digital medical devices. This expansion is manifested in license and development of digital medical devices covering various Women's Healthcare areas.