India’s First Child-Friendly Chemotherapy Drug Developed

The collaboration between Tata Memorial Centre and IDRS Labs resulted in the formulation of 6-MP, a chemotherapy drug in syrup form

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Last Updated on January 5, 2024 by The Health Master

Chemotherapy Drug

In a groundbreaking collaboration, doctors from Mumbai’s Tata Memorial Centre and IDRS Labs in Bengaluru have achieved a significant milestone by developing India’s first and only chemotherapy drug, 6-mercaptopurine (6-MP), in a syrup form.

This development is poised to play a crucial role in combating Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), the most common form of blood cancer affecting children.

Understanding the Challenge: ALL in Children

Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia is a formidable adversary, particularly in children.

The existing tablet formulations posed challenges related to dosage precision, flexibility, and tolerability. The complexity of treating young patients necessitated a more tailored solution.

The Syrup Revolution: 6-MP in Action

The collaboration between Tata Memorial Centre and IDRS Labs resulted in the formulation of 6-MP, a chemotherapy drug in syrup form, commercially known as PREVALL.

Unlike the conventional tablet form, this child-friendly chemotherapy drug in syrup form offers a practical solution to the dosing challenges faced by pediatric oncologists.

Benefits Beyond Boundaries

This innovative formulation is expected to benefit around 10,000 children aged 1-10 years annually.

Notably, liquid formulations of 6-MP have been available in Europe and the US for some time, but children in developing countries lacked access.

The introduction of PREVALL bridges this gap, ensuring that young patients in India have access to state-of-the-art treatment options.

A Simple Process for Significant Impact

The powdered form of PREVALL can be easily reconstituted into a 100 ml oral suspension at a concentration of 10mg/ml.

This not only simplifies the administration process but also ensures that the dosage is precise, a critical factor in pediatric oncology.

Expert Voices

Dr S D Banavali, Director-Academics at Tata Memorial Centre, emphasizes, “Up until now, less-than-ideal practices such as tablet crushing or resorting to alternate day dosing were employed to meet the specific dosing needs in children.”

Dr Girish Chinnaswamy, Head of the Department of Pediatric Oncology at Tata Hospital, adds that formulations like PREVALL contribute to dose optimization, a crucial aspect of effective cancer treatment.

Precision Tools for Precise Dosing

To enhance the precision of dosing, PREVALL comes equipped with a syringe and a Press In Bottle Adapter (PIBA).

These tools empower medical professionals to tailor the dosage according to each patient’s body, ensuring optimal therapeutic outcomes.

Stability in Varied Conditions

Dr Vikram Gota, Professor of Clinical Pharmacology at ACTREC, highlights that the powder for oral suspension is designed to maintain stability in hot and humid conditions.

This feature distinguishes it from liquid formulations and ensures the drug’s efficacy under diverse environmental circumstances.

Making PREVALL Accessible to All

The commercial availability of PREVALL marks a significant step forward in pediatric oncology.

Plans for distribution and accessibility within India, and potentially beyond, are underway, ensuring that this groundbreaking drug reaches those who need it the most.

Shaping the Future of Pediatric Oncology

Formulations like PREVALL have the potential to revolutionize the landscape of pediatric oncology.

The development opens avenues for further research and innovation, promising a brighter future for children battling cancer.

A Milestone in Pediatric Oncology

In conclusion, the collaborative efforts of Tata Memorial Centre and IDRS Labs have resulted in a groundbreaking development – India’s first child-friendly chemotherapy drug.

PREVALL not only addresses the challenges associated with existing formulations but also paves the way for advancements in pediatric oncology globally.

Disclaimer: This article contains information derived from the source mentioned below. Our team utilized an AI language model to rewrite and present the news or article in a unique format.


  1. Is PREVALL available for adults as well?
    • PREVALL is currently formulated to meet the specific dosing needs of children, and its efficacy in adult patients is under evaluation.
  2. Are there any known side effects of PREVALL?
    • The drug has undergone rigorous testing, and while every medication carries some risk of side effects, they are expected to be minimal. Consultation with a healthcare professional is advised.
  3. How can PREVALL be obtained for a child in need?
    • The distribution process is being organized, and healthcare providers will play a crucial role in making PREVALL available to eligible patients.
  4. Are there plans to export PREVALL to other countries?
    • While the immediate focus is on ensuring availability in India, discussions about potential international distribution are underway.
  5. What does the future hold for pediatric oncology with the introduction of PREVALL?
    • The development of PREVALL opens up possibilities for further research and innovations in pediatric cancer treatment, promising a positive impact on the field.

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