API announces partnership with Riverford Productions Inc. for documentary series on pharmaceutical industry


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Edmonton, May 4, 2020 – Applied Pharmaceutical Innovation (API) has partnered with Edmonton-based Riverford Productions Inc. to develop a documentary series on drug development in Canada to shed light on its complexity, challenges and successes. The series is titled: Drugs – A One Swallow Treatment for a Misunderstood Industry. 

“I am excited to express our support to Riverford Production’s documentary series focusing on drug development in Canada and its place in the global marketplace,” says API CEO Andrew MacIsaac. “We believe that this series can help the public better understand the complexities of what it takes to move a lab discovery forward to the point where it is available as a lifesaving medication for patients, as well as highlight some of the world class work that is happening in our community.” 

Based out of the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, API collaborates with academic, not-for-profit, and industry partners across Alberta and Canada. It provides the expertise, services, and infrastructure of a pharmaceutical company to help innovators launch their ideas into the real world, connect industry to the services they need for commercial success, and accelerate all aspects of the drug development process. 

Edmonton has been the centre for discoveries such as antiviral therapy for chronic hepatitis B and the development of voclosporin used in the treatment of lupus nephritis. These innovations are helping to improve and save the lives of millions of people around the world. 

There is a general lack of knowledge about the speed, cost and amount of research required to successfully bring drugs to market, made particularly evident during a health emergency such as the current COVID-19 world crisis. This situation alone emphasizes the need to broadly educate about the realities of the Pharma industry. 

“There is a lack of understanding about how and what pharmaceutical research entails, be it from the researcher side, the industry side, or the regulator side,” says Riverford Productions Producer Steve Glassman. “Our goal is to produce a series that will not only educate the viewer but also entertain them along the way, highlighting the groundbreaking work happening here and around the world.” 

Riverford Productions Inc. is founded by three award-winning Edmonton producers: Steve Glassman, Les Sereda and Steven Brese. 

More information: 


Darka Tarnawsky, President, 780-490-8277 darka@bottomlinepro.com 


Andrew MacIsaac, CEO, 780-860-4494 andrew.macisaac@appliedpharma.ca 


Les Sereda, Producer, 780-884-9372 les@riverford.ca riverford.ca 

Applied Pharmaceutical Innovation is a not-for-profit that works in collaboration with the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences as well as research and post-secondary institutions across Canada. API draws on an interdisciplinary network of over 30 pharmaceutical scientists, clinicians, regulatory, patent, and market experts in a variety of fields and disease areas to bring life-saving research to the real world. 

Riverford Productions Inc. is an Edmonton-based production company that focuses on telling engaging stories that educate and entertain in a documentary form. Every project is approached with complete commitment, passion and experience to ensure that stories are told authentically and critically. 

Steve Glassman is recognized as one of Canada’s most-respected entertainment Executive Producers and show runners. Throughout his career, he has played a major role on hundreds of award-winning national television entertainment and documentary programs. Glassman developed and produced the critically acclaimed Country Beat TV documentary music series, he was the Executive Producer of the CBC Winnipeg Comedy Festival TV series, and is consulting producer at Just For Laughs TV. Glassman commissioned and helped produce the documentary Lost Years, winning awards around the world.