IBF Farmoquímica announces manufacturing plant of radiocontrast agents for cancer tests in São José do Rio Preto
With the support from Investe SP and funded by Desenvolve SP, unit will be built at the Technology Park of the city, with investments totaling R$ 16 millionInveste SP
On July 10, IBF Farmoquímica announced the construction of a plant at the Technology Park of São José do Rio Preto. The unit is producing the radiopharmaceutical isotope 18FDG, a radiocontrast agent for imaging tests in PET-CT/FDG equipment, used primarily in cancer tests, but with important applications in neurology and cardiology.
The project was funded by Desenvolve SP – São Paulo Development Agency, a financial institution of the state government, and relied on the support from Investe São Paulo, the investment and export promotion agency associated with the Department of Economic Development, Science, Technology and Innovation. The investment totaled R$ 16.6 million, with R$ 6 million funded by Desenvolve SP for the construction works and acquisition of national equipment.
“IBF is now part of our Health Project, which consists of giving full priority to projects in this sector seeking to increasingly consolidate the production chain in the state of São Paulo,” said the president of Investe SP, Juan Quirós. The agency assisted the company to propose a tax poll seeking tax equality between private companies and public institutions that produce FDG.
“Innovative companies such as IBF make the State of São Paulo a leader in research and innovation. We believe that developments like this are essential to encourage the search for solutions that improve the quality of life of the population of São Paulo,” said Milton Luiz de Melo Santos, president of Desenvolve SP.
“This investment will benefit patients across the state of São Paulo and Brazil who need this type of diagnosis. This is another innovation that makes a difference in the quality of life of the population,” said Márcio França, vice governor and secretary of Economic Development, Science, Technology and Innovation.
According to company executives, the region of São José do Rio Preto stands out in the field of cancer diagnosis and treatment, especially at Hospital do Câncer de Barretos [Barretos Cancer Hospital]. Thus, to use the PET-CT/FDG technology, it would be necessary to use the material from the state capital and Campinas.
The problem is that FDG loses half of its radioactive capacity every 110 minutes, making this logistics process very complicated. Thus, the local production of the isotope provides more safety in the use of high technology to cities such as Barretos, Votuporanga, Araçatuba, Ribeirão Preto, Uberlândia and, of course, São José do Rio Preto. In addition, it also gives the opportunity for other cities to adopt the methodology.
National and international scientific studies indicate that 37% of cancer patients undergoing PET-CT/18FDG tests have their clinical treatment changed, which clearly shows the importance of technology to the region and to the State of São Paulo.
Eight people were hired to work at the plant, including pharmacists, engineers, physicists, administrators, chemistry technicians, pharmacy technicians and electronics technicians.
FDG arrived in Brazil in the early 2000s, being produced exclusively by the Institute of Energy and Nuclear Research (IPEN) of the University of São Paulo (USP) at the time, as part of the federal monopoly. The private sector was able to enter the market in 2006. In 2010, the company R2-Soluções em Radiofarmácia, one of the partners of IBF, started producing, in Porto Alegre (RS), the isotope at a plant similar to the one to be built in São José do Rio Preto.
About IBF Farmoquímica
IBF – Indústria Brasileira de Farmoquímicos works with the production of the radiopharmaceutical FDG (18 F). Radiopharmaceuticals are pharmaceutical preparations consisting of a radioactive element called radioisotope and a carrier molecule that is responsible for binding to the tissue of the human body to be examined or treated.