Biosimilars/Research

Biosimilars: it is not as simple as cost alone

Biosimilars/Research | Posted 29/07/2009

Biosimilars or follow-on biologics (FOBs) are biopharmaceuticals that, unlike small molecule generic products, are copies of larger, much more complex proteins. As such, data generated from one biopharmaceutical cannot be extrapolated to another. Unlike small molecule generics, FOBs require a full developmental programme, albeit smaller than for an originator product. This has been recognized by European regulatory authorities and it is becoming clear that accelerated processes for FOB marketing approval are not feasible.

Key issues with biosimilars: impact on patient safety

Biosimilars/Research | Posted 06/07/2009

The primary safety concern for biosimilar agents is their potential immunogenicity. Using biopharmaceuticals to replace endogenous proteins that may be present at insufficient concentrations carries the serious risk of stimulating the immune system to develop anti-product antibodies (Abs), which may cross-react with endogenous protein.

What physicians need to know about biosimilars

Biosimilars/Research | Posted 06/07/2009

Physicians should become aware of potential differences between biopharmaceuticals (biologicals) and their generic versions (called biosimilars in the EU and follow-on protein products in the US) that will soon enter the market, and that the impact on safety and efficacy is critical for patient safety. “Healthcare professionals need to understand the critical issues surrounding the use of biosimilars to make informed treatment decisions”, states Professor Huub Schellekens in Biosimilar therapeutics – what do we need to consider in NDT Plus. 2009;2(Suppl 1):i27-i36.