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General

WHO prequalifies first rituximab biosimilar

The World Health Organization (WHO) has prequalified its first rituximab biosimilar as part of its efforts to make life-saving treatments more affordable and available to patients globally.

Biosimilar Awareness Week in Australia

The second Biosimilar Awareness Week took place on 25–29 May 2020 in Australia. It involved discussion on social media and aimed to increase awareness and confidence in biosimilars among consumers and healthcare professionals.

EU approves Henlius copy biologicals facility in China

Following European Union (EU) inspections of Shanghai Henlius Biotech, Inc’s Xuhui facility in China, it is likely that the copy biologicals produced at the site will soon be available internationally.

Amgen on both sides of the biosimilar arena

Amgen has both originator biologicals and also biosimilars in its portfolio, which means the US-based drugmaker can be on both sides of the fence when it comes to biosimilars.

Reimbursement of biosimilars in the US

Barriers to market uptake of biosimilars in the US include biosimilars pricing, legal and promotional wars being waged by originator companies, and the lack of confidence in biosimilars [1, 2].

Amgen explains the steps of manufacturing a biosimilar

US-based biotech giant Amgen explains on its websites the steps involved in manufacturing a biosimilar.

US FDA clears Biocon manufacturing sites in Malaysia and India

There has been successful closure of US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspections at Biocon Biologics sites in Malaysia and India. Three manufacturing sites were issued FDA establishment inspection reports (EIRs) in April 2020. The site in Malaysia is set to produce insulin glargine biosimilar, and two sites in Bangalore, India are set to manufacture trastuzumab and pegfilgrastim oncology biosimilars.

Biosimilars applications under review by EMA – January 2020

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is the body responsible for approval of biosimilars within the European Union (EU). A legal framework for approving biosimilars was established in 2003. Approval of biosimilars is based on an abbreviated registration process, which allows biosimilars manufacturers to provide a reduced package of information compared to originator drugs, provided they can prove ‘similarity’ to the originator or reference drug.

Online education for diabetes specialists on biosimilar insulins

An online educational course has been published by Medscape in collaboration with the Association of Diabetes Care & Education Specialist.

New information on biosimilars from Australia and the US

The Generic Biosimilar Medicines Association and the Biologics Prescriber Collaborative have released new information on biosimilars, aimed at physicians and the public, respectively.