Hyderabad: Axis, a Hyderabad based pharmaceutical company at Miyapur, Kukatpally, which conducted unauthorized drug trials on about 20 poor women working in quarries in Piduguralla of Guntur district, after hoodwinking the government for a long time was finally sealed after seizure by the authorities concerned on Friday.
The company, disregarding a formal permission from the Drug Control Authority of India, allegedly engaged poor and illiterate women as guinea pigs for conducting tests for treatment of breast cancer.
Employing brokers, the company allegedly hired innocent and BPL women and gave them injections after collecting blood samples for a meagre ‘amount’.
It was only later that they came to senses after they developed side effects and took ill.
“It was an aberration of the system,” said Minister for Health and Family Welfare DL Ravindra Reddy who was still unaware of the company which did all the mischief even after months.
Apparently the Minister avoided the media persons at the Secretariat on Friday but the waiting journalists even from upcountry papers persuaded him to reveal the facts related to the sickening incident which would not have come to light at all but for some victims’ severe complaints to a local doctor.
A report was awaited on the entire episode and action would be initiated against the culprit once identified, said the Minister. It was admitted that clinical trials were common in the developing countries.
Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy who held a review meeting here, along with the Minister for Health and other officers, expressed concern over the incident and called for a report on the whole incident.
Meanwhile two brokers, employed by the said company for the last two months to entice the women suffering from abject poverty, were said to have been arrested on Friday.
The ‘trial’ of drug saw the light only after victims developed side effects including extreme weakness and pain.
Later the victims were admitted to the Guntur government hospital.
Earlier, when they saw a local doctor for treatment they were shocked when informed that they were subjected to experimental tests.
The company is understood to have flouted the rules as the drug trials were conducted only on laboratory animals like rats, monkey etc.
The victims had no knowledge of what was administered to them like dangerous consequences in the name of clinical evaluations.(INN)