• 14 June 2010
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Betting on biosimilars

Reliance Life Sciences has launched four biosimilars and is expected to launch another four this year

Reliance Life Sciences

KV Subramaniam, President & CEO

Research initiatives in medical, plant and industrial biotechnology

Startup Year:

Dhirubhai Ambani Life Sciences Center, R-282, TTC Industrial Area of MIDC, Thane-Belapur Road, Rabale, Navi Mumbai-400701, Maharashtra



Reliance Life Sciences (RLS), a research-driven, biotechnology-led, life sciences organization and a part of Reliance Industries, clocked sales revenue of Rs 450 crore in FY 2009-10 according to BioSpectrum estimates. Established in 2002, RLS focuses on areas like medical, plant and industrial biotechnology; specifically, these relate to biopharmaceuticals, pharmaceuticals, clinical research services, regenerative medicine, molecular medicine, novel therapeutics, biofuels, plant biotechnology and industrial biotechnology.

Around 70 percent of RLS' topline growth comes from biopharmaceuticals. There is a specific focus on biosimilars. The company has already launched four biosimilars - ReliPoietin (recombinant erythropoietin), ReliGrast (recombinant Granulocyte Colony Stimulating Factor (G-CSF)), ReliFeron (recombinant interferon alpha), and MIRel (recombinant reteplase-tissue plasminogen activator) - in the domestic market. India and the rest of the world (RoW) markets would be the company's primary focus for the launch of these products. The company is expected to launch another four products this year including one in Europe.

The company has set up the first cord blood repository in South Asia and offers cord blood banking services to public. This is the first cord blood repository in the world to be accorded with a licence by an official regulatory authority, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is also accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB).

RLS is developing novel therapeutics for the treatment of cancer, infectious diseases, inflammatory disorders, ocular disorders and neurodegenerative disorders. The discovery program is based on siRNAs and monoclonal antibodies. Other products in development include a wide range of novel research-led, autologous and allogenic cell therapies and tissue engineered products. This will in turn consolidate its position in the regenerative medicine market.

The company also focuses on developing stem cell therapies, right from research, cell processing in cGMP facilities, clinical research and clinical practice. Cell-based therapies from Reliance Life Sciences aim to fulfill unmet patient needs in the areas of cardiac disorders, neural degeneration, spinal cord injury, metabolic disorders like diabetes, ophthalmic diseases, hematological diseases, oncological diseases, burns and wound management, diabetic and venous ulcers, and cartilage disorders. RLS is developing an India-centric, global biofuels initiative covering biodiesel, from jatropha and other non-food oil seed crops; bioethanol, from cellulosic biomass; and biobutanol, from cellulosic biomass.

Reliance has successfully grown jatropha along with horticulture and medicinal intercrops. It has commissioned a 6,500 tonnes per year pilot plant in Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh, for biodiesel production and developed second-generation processes for bioethanol and biobutanol production at a lab scale.

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