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General

Biologicals sales have almost doubled since 2006

Sales of biologicals have almost doubled from US$63.8 billion in 2006 to US$124.6 billion in 2012.

Biosimilars and US exclusivity

Currently, the legal pathway in the US for the approval of biosimilars is the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCI Act) of 2009.

Biosimilars applications under review by EMA – 2013 Q1

Last update: 12 April 2013 

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is the body responsible for approval of biosimilars within the 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’.

Recall of anaemia drug highlights safety issues of NBCDs

US-based biotech firm Affymax announced on 24 February 2013 that it is recalling all lots of its red blood cell-stimulating medicine Omontys (peginesatide).  This could have broader implications on how FDA evaluates follow-on non-biological complex drugs (NBCDs).

Pharma companies sue EMA to block release of data

US-based biotech companies AbbVie and InterMune have both sued EMA in a bid to block publication of clinical trial data for their drugs.

US FDA defends biosimilar substitution

US FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg defended the substitution of interchangeable biosimilars at the Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA) Annual Meeting which was held in Orlando, Florida, USA, on 20–22 February 2013.

Biosimilars to replace 70% of chemical drugs

Biosimilars will replace some 70% of global chemical drugs over the next couple of decades, according to industry experts. This replacement will occur due to the better safety profiles of biosimilars compared to chemical drugs and the fact that many originator biologicals will lose their patent protection in the coming years, according to Mr Appaji, Director General of Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council of India (Pharmexcil).

Top developments in biosimilars during 2012

Much has happened in the biosimilars’ industry over the last year.

Originator biologicals approved and marketed in Germany

Last updated: 14 December 2012 

The Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte, BfArM) is responsible for the approval, i.e. marketing authorization, of medicinal products, including biologicals, in Germany.

Competing biosimilars to Amgen’s biologicals

Amgen has been a leading biotechnology company since 1980. Amgen pioneered the development of novel products based on advances in recombinant DNA and molecular biology and launched the biotechnology industry’s first blockbuster medicines.