Prospects for development of cellular and genetic technologies in Russia

The institutional and legislative challenges facing modern medicine were the focus of the expert discussion “Development of cellular and genetic technologies in Russia”, which took place as part of the first day of the Gaidar Forum– 2020. The discussion was moderated by Vitaly Omelyanovsky, Director General of the Center of Healthcare Expert Evaluation and Quality Control of the Ministry of Health of Russia.

In the course of the discussion, leading experts discussed the main difficulties in introducing and using innovative gene therapy and cell technologies. In particular, the complicated registration process, the lack of legislation on the the principle of uniformity in the application and interpretation of the concepts of “medicinal product” and “medical technology”, limited patient access to genetic diagnostic methods, an imperfect system of payment for medical care, lack of a clear understanding of treatment regimens and the system of drug provision.

Yuri Zhulev, President, All-Russian Public Organization of Disabled People “Russian Hemophilia Society” opened the discussion: “Today we are concerned with simple but vital questions: how quickly new technologies and new medicinal products will be available to patients, who will pay for these technologies, and how much do these technologies fit into existing systems, for example, preferential medication supply in our country?” The President of Russia during his message elaborated further on the important and acute problem of controlling the quality of drugs and providing vital imported drugs.

Mikhail Maschan, Deputy Director General, Director of the Higher School of Molecular and Experimental Medicine, focused the discussion on the revolutionary nature of the changes taking place in medical practice. “The situation that we observe in the world can be called the revolution of gene and cell therapy. The situation with preclinical studies in Russia is not very simple, but the situation with early clinical studies of these technologies is especially difficult. The current regulatory framework has come to fruition, but, in general, it is primarily focused on the industrial and mass product and, to a lesser extent, on niche, orphan technologies,” said Mikhail Maschan.

“The patient along with the professional community and the state is one of the three components of the healthcare system, and patients’ interests do not always coincide with the interests of the state and the professional community. Nevertheless, everything that we do should ultimately be aimed at the patient,” emphasized during the speech Evgeny Shlyakhto, Director General, Federal State Budgetary Institution National Medical Research Center named after V.A. Almazov, Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.

The main task facing the expert community is to find the most correct, adequate and balanced solutions for the development of cellular and genetic technologies. “The progress of medical science has led to a tremendous shake-up in the healthcare system. There are challenges to the public, private, insurance health systems. This is happening due to the emergence of technologies that will allow treating patients in a completely new way,” said Vitaly Omelyanovsky.

The 11th Gaidar Forum “Russia and the World: Challenges of the New Decade” is being held at the Presidential Academy on January 15 and 16, 2020. The forum is focused on the goals of national and global development and the search for practical answers to the most pressing challenges of our time. The forum is attended by ministers of the Government of the Russian Federation, members of the Federal Assembly, governors of the Russian regions, prominent international experts, and representatives of foreign states.

The organizers of the 11th Gaidar Forum are the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, the Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy, and the Association of Innovative Regions of Russia.

The title partners of the Gaidar Forum are PJSC Gazprom and JSC Gazprombank. The strategic partners are Coca-Cola, Mastercard, Russian Railways, Pharmstandard group of companies, Johnson & Johnson, Sanofi, Novartis group of companies, MSD, AKIG group of companies, EF Education First. Partners are Prosveshchenie group of companies, EY, Huawei, RVC JSC, Russian Agricultural Bank JSC.

The title information partners of the Gaidar Forum are the Russia-24 TV channel, TASS, RBC, Business FM. The strategic information partners are Kommersant Publishing House, Interfax, Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Invest Foresight magazine, Federal Press Agency. The main information partners are, Gazeta.Ru, Lenta.Ru,, Profile. International partners are RT, ThomsonReuters, Sputnik, EFE, Cision, Pan Pacific Agency. Information partners are Snob media project, AEI PRIME, RNS, Expert magazine, Parlamentskaya Gazeta,, Ekho Moskvy radio station, PRO Business TV channel, FINAM.RU information and analytical agency, Davydov.Index, Strategiya magazine, Ekonomika i Zhizn newspaper, Econs portal, Gosudarstvennaya Sluzhba magazine, TV BRICS.