Research for combined aspirin-cilostazol tablet for stroke gets DOST-Cradle support

An image showing the benefit of combining aspirin and cilostazol in one tablet.

Good news for patients who have been taking aspirin and cilostazol to manage their stroke: you may soon take these medicines combined in one tablet, no longer in separately, and at cheaper price.

This is being made possible through the partnership between Adamson University and Compact Pharmaceutical Corp. that seeks to determine the formulation, quality control and immediate-release tablets of fixed-dose combinations of aspirin and cilostazol.

Cilostazol and aspirin are used for the management of stroke, thrombo-embolic disorders and ischemic heart disease but are available as separate dosage units in the market.

The project aims to develop a cheaper alternative with minimized adverse drug reactions and enhanced dosage compliance.

There is currently no fixed-dose combination of aspirin and cilostazol in the Philippine drug market, so this would be the first such tablet, the proponents said during the symposium.

Jose Valerio Calleja of Compact Pharmaceuticals said during the symposium that he has consulted with doctors who said that the combination drug may be used as maintenance medicine for hypertension. However, he added it still has to undergo clinical trials for safety and acceptability.

He said that doctors want to have a combination of the two medicines because it would be more convenient for patients. Having no need to buy separate medicines, it would ensure that the patients will be able to take both medicines.

He added that the research and production of the combination medicine is “complicated,” which necessitates a partnership with a very “good research” university.

Incidentally, Adamson University’s current executive director is Dr. Nuna Almanzor, the retired director of Industrial Technology Development Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

Romalyn Joson of Adamson University said one of the challenges they encountered in the research for the project is the sources of the chemicals and machinery because aspirin and cilostazol have different properties.

Cradle Program

The project is being made possible through the assistance of the Collaborative Research and Development to Leverage Philippine Economy (Cradle) of the DOST.

A wellness project, the aspirin-cilostazol combination project was featured in the second symposium of Cradle in 2022 titled, “Science in Bloom: Innovative breakthroughs for wellness, community and the environment,” that was streamed online on February 25.

The event featured research collaborations and technologies developed for wellness, community and environment sector.

Through the Cradle Program, Filipino companies, including small-to-medium enterprises, find value through innovation by partnering with universities or research and development institutes to solve their problems.

Under the program, it is the industry partner which defines the problem to be solved, while the academic institutions or R&D Institute undertakes the research.

The Cradle funding mechanism provides P5 million, over a period of one to three years, to the academic institution or R&D institute.

The industry partner contributes 20 percent to the project, in cash or in kind; and promises to adopt the research output.

Projects on environment, community and arts

Besides the aspirin-cilostazol combination project, the Cradle symposium also showcased R&D projects that exhibit value in the areas of environmental sustainability, the community and the arts.

The partnership of Sarnimian Small Scale Mining Corp. and Caraga State University in Agusan del Norte to develop alternative solutions to the waste of gold processing plant, or mill tailings.

The research seeks to find alternative use for gold mill tailings and conduct comprehensive analysis on how the developed technology can contribute toward socioeconomic and environmental sustainability.

The Driver Air ni Juan-Aluminosilicate Technology for Compact Air Purification.

It is a partnership between Manly Plastics Inc., MC Home Depot,  Global One Shuttle Service Inc. and University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD).

The project is expected to develop a powerful and portable air purifier for automotive air filtration systems which works as a particulate filter, harmful gas remover and anti-microbial filter.

Although there are already many automotive air filtration systems in the market, the proponents said the project will be developed using a naturally occurring aluminosilicate minerals in the Philippines through facile modification processes to mitigate the health-related risks of using taxis as mode of transportation.

Through this procedure, the product will use local sources and manpower, thus, it will provide local jobs and will be cheaper for the consumers.

With this new technology and product proposed, the essential products can be provided to the transportation sector without relying on the importation of raw materials.

The partnership between Agricultural Sustainability Initiatives for Nature Inc. and UPD aims to help the coastal communities in Macalelon, Quezon, and the local economy by using a science-based approach to increase the supply of oysters and ensure sustainability.

Another project for the community is the Custom Made Crafts Center Inc. and DOST-Philippine Textile Research Institute partnership that is aiming to develop a community-based functionalized Philippine handwoven textile solution for non-medical face masks

The project aims to develop water-repellent textile materials using local handwoven indigenous fabrics; develop a World Health Organization-compliant cloth masks for non-medical face masks; and establish an initial market assessment of the developed non-medical face masks.

Empowers Filipino companies

Science Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña said, “Cradle empowers our local Filipino companies to shift and adapt to the needs of their clientele.”

“The partnership between industry and academe allows sharing of knowledge and insight. Cradle improves the capabilities of our local companies and at the same time, broadens the understanding of our scientists and researchers on the needs of industry,” he added.

For her part, DOST Undersecretary for R&D Rowena Cristina L. Guevara said the Science for Change Program of the DOST, is committed to promoting and accelerating research and development (R&D) in the country and improving industrial competitiveness in the regions.

“The R&D developed through the Cradle program drives economic growth for our local companies and provides an avenue for them to find new processes or new product lines,” she added.

“Cradle also contributes to localization as it allows companies to have tailored solutions that maximizes the use of our local resources,” Guevara pointed out.

Image credits: Zoom

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