Marchesini Group and Abbott Hold Health Innovation and Italian Manufacturing Event

The machinery manufacturer and Abbott joined forces in a unique pharma and packaging partnership to produce a novel med device for diabetic monitoring.

As regulations for pharmaceutical and medical device packaging become more stringent, end users must turn to packaging suppliers more and more for customized machines and systems that comply with serialization and tamper-proofing directives.

Marchesini Group, a maker of machinery and technologies for the pharmaceutical industry, hosted the Health Innovation and Italian Manufacturing event Feb. 23 at its headquarters in Pianoro, Italy, to discuss its partnership with Abbott in creating the revolutionary FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System, as well as the high-tech manufacturing climate in Italy.

Highlights from the speakers:

Pat Cole, Site Director at Abbott Diabetes Care, spoke about the unmet need for more discreet and less painful glucose testing. For many patients, regular testing—up to or exceeding 10 times a day—is needed for good glycemic control. The European average is 2.4 tests/day.

“The way we test glucose hasn’t changed in the last 30 to 40 years but the disease population has grown considerably,” Cole said. The FLASH system, a small glucose sensor connected to a patch worn on the skin, offers continuous glucose monitoring for eight hours once scanned.

About the partnership, Cole said that Abbott has had a long relationship with the Marchesini Group and she has two of their packaging machines in her factory. Abbott wanted a company that both understood pharmaceutical innovation and had innovations of their own. “We look for quality. We haven’t been disappointed in Marchesini,” noted Cole.

Federica Guidi, Minister of Economic Development, commented on the improvement in Italian regulations leading to a favorable entrepreneurial trend in the country. She is seeing multinational companies that moved their brand and patent out of the country moving back to Italy.

Stefano Bonaccini, President of the Emilia Romagna Region, also noted that Italy is seeing an uptick in innovation and manufacturing, with companies like Lamborghini and Louis Vuitton creating new manufacturing jobs in the country.

Ultimately, the partnership between Abbott and Marchesini has set events in motion for improving quality of life for diabetic patients worldwide. While not available everywhere yet, the device is already showing benefits in its users. Doxa Pharma’s Giuseppe Venturelli presented research results showing that 81% of users tested their glucose levels six or more times a day, and that hospitalizations were reduced in patients using the device.

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