March 14, 2022 9:42 AM EDT

Pfizer Inc. said it would no longer start new clinical trials in Russia and that it would donate all profits from its subsidiary in the country to Ukraine relief causes.

At the same time, the drugmaker said in a statement that it will continue to supply medicines to Russia, out of fear that vulnerable patients such as children and elderly people who rely on its therapies could be harmed by any halt.

The company “concluded that a voluntary pause in the flow of our medicines to Russia would be in direct violation of our foundational principle of putting patients first,” according to the statement. Pfizer said it doesn’t own or operate any manufacturing sites in Russia and plans to cease planned investments with local suppliers.

There is increasing economic pressure on Russia, including sanctions from the U.S., European Union and other countries, over the war in Ukraine. Many multinational corporations have opted to suspend their operations in Russia as well, though Moscow has threated asset seizures and other potential reprisals.

Pfizer said it would work with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other regulators to move current clinical trials to alternative locations outside of Russia. Patients already enrolled in studies will continue to receive medications, the company said.

Shares of Pfizer advanced 0.7% in premarket trading on Monday.

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