Sanofi, Tencent sign cooperation memo at CIIE

Hu Min
The biopharma leader and the Chinese tech giant will leverage digital tools to empower a new path in care for patients with atopic dermatitis.
Hu Min
Sanofi, Tencent sign cooperation memo at CIIE
Ti Gong

Sanofi and Tencent ink a strategic cooperation memorandum on Friday during the third China International Import Expo.

World-leading biopharmaceutical company Sanofi signed a strategic cooperation memorandum with Tencent on Friday during the third China International Import Expo to leverage digital tools to empower a new path in providing end-to-end care for patients with atopic dermatitis.

Under the agreement, the two sides will help raise people's awareness on atopic dermatitis, optimize standards of care, and empower high-quality disease management in the long term.

The target is to establish a patient ecosystem to create a closed-loop, end-to-end patient journey and enable integration of a complete set of data, Sanofi said.

The two sides will explore the pioneering combination of health care and Internet technology, and create innovative service models in disease management, diagnosis and treatment, payment and medicines, they said.

They will establish a patient-centric health management plan and digital platform, promoting innovation in digital health care and satisfying needs from patients with atopic dermatitis.

Sanofi also joined hands with leading experts to improve standardized treatment of atopic dermatitis and other type-2 inflammations to set up a new closed-loop ecosystem that covers diagnosis, treatment and patient management, both online and offline, it announced during the import expo.

"After its debut in the CIIE last year, our targeted biologic therapy Dupixent set a new 'China speed’ with the shortest period from obtaining approval to starting product supply, kicking off the era when biologic agents play a key role in treating type-2 inflammation," said Burkon Wang, general manager of Sanofi Specialty Care China.

"This year, while introducing new indications for children and adolescents with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis, we hope to leverage the open and collaborative platform at the CIIE to bring together authoritative experts and innovation partners in diverse fields to build a more comprehensive health-care ecosystem," he said.

With the accelerating pace of life, increased mental stress and environmental pollution, the prevalence of immune system disorders like allergies and inflammation is rising, thus posing a big challenge to the health of Chinese people, experts warned.

Among them, atopic dermatitis caused by type-2 inflammation is a systemic immune system disorder, with recurrent intense itching and rash.

"As the initial disease in the skin, digestive and respiratory process in allergies, atopic dermatitis is not just a skin disease," said Yao Zhirong, director of the Department of Dermatology of Xinhua Hospital.

"When people suffer from atopic dermatitis in early stage, they are at a higher risk of developing allergic rhinitis, asthma and other type-2 inflammation-related diseases in the future."

Although it is a common disease, the clinical diagnosis rate is low.

"In the early stage, many patients with atopic dermatitis were misdiagnosed as having common skin disorders like eczema, resulting in the lack of attention to disease management," said Zhang Jianzhong, director of the Department of Dermatology of Peking University People's Hospital.

"Meanwhile, doctors did not pay enough attention to atopic dermatitis, and there is still a long way to go to improve the standardized care for patients with atopic dermatitis in China," said Zhang.

Compared with adults, adolescents and children are more likely to suffer from atopic dermatitis, doctors said.

"Research results show that the global prevalence of atopic dermatitis in children is up to 10 to 20 percent," said Li Wei with the Department of Dermatology of the Huashan Hospital.

Among atopic dermatitis patients, 25 percent are moderate and serious, according to Li.

"Children are particularly vulnerable and the most affected in terms of their life quality," he added.

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