Meldonium the most popular local pharma

Meldonium, the heart drug named in recent doping scandals, was the highest-grossing locally-made pharmaceutical in Latvia in 2015.

That is according to a yearly report (Latvian/English) by the State Agency of Medicines.

Sales of drugs containing meldonium increased 16% in 2015 compared to 2014, reaching €1.58m. 

The total sales of pharmaceuticals in Latvia reached €336m, up from €319m in 2014, according to the report. 

Mildronāts, a medicine containing meldonium, is one of the most successful medicinal exports from Latvia.

In 2013, export turnover of the drug reached €65m. It is produced by the Latvian pharmaceutical company Grindeks. 

After meldonium was banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), numerous athletes--many from Russia--have tested positive for the drug, with Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova being the most notable case.

Manufacturers in March said they have stepped up production in response to international interest. Grindeks is pushing for WADA to remove the ban.

Most recently chemist Ivars Kalviņš, credited with inventing the drug, appeared in a press conference in Moscow claiming that Mildronāts, which has anti-ischemic properties, also improves sexual potency due to its positive effects on the blood flow, reported LETA Monday.

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