Benefits of innovative biologicals and biosimilars for patients and health systems

Home/Reports | Posted 04/02/2022 post-comment0 Post your comment

A report carried out by several authors showed that if the launch of biotechnological drugs unleashed controversy at the time due to their novelty, those of biosimilars were even greater. Fifteen years after the launch of the first biosimilar and taking into account current regulations, the question remains as to whether they represent opportunities or risks in terms of safety, effectiveness and costs for patients, physicians and health systems. The challenges are to educate and communicate in a broad and sustained manner about scientific innovation in pharmaco-biology, the value of innovators, and the evidence of effectiveness and safety of biosimilars [1].   

Patient MD002316 V13C05

According to the authors, the opposition to biosimilars was because there was no clear standard on how to evaluate them and doubts about their safety. This lack of regulation generated confusion and fear, mainly among the medical community. Some organizations and companies argued intellectual property rights and accentuated ‘differences’. However, even innovator biologicals can have small variations over time, due to their origin, development and manufacturing.

The importance of improving access to biotherapeutic products and ensuring their quality, safety and efficacy is very important according to the World Health Organization. In 2014, it adopted a resolution recognizing them as biotherapeutic products similar to reference medicines. Biosimilars are developed after patents expire, this substantially reduces costs and improves availability and access to treatment for a greater number of patients.

For the US Food and Drug Administration, a biosimilar is a biological product that is similar to the patent product and has no clinically significant differences from the already approved biological product, provides the same safety and effectiveness benefits as the original, because both are rigorously and exhaustively evaluated.

For the European Medicines Agency, a biosimilar is similar to the ‘reference medicinal product’ already marketed in the EU. Authorized biosimilars can be marketed after the ten-year period of market protection for reference drugs has expired.

In their report, the authors highlighted that the challenge of innovative biologicals is the perception of high cost, understandable because pharmaceutical companies invest a lot of money and time in research and development of each molecule, and the manufacturing process requires sophistication and cutting-edge technology. The result: effective, fast-acting and tolerable drugs in the treatment of immune diseases, cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and rare diseases, among others, and the significant recovery of patients' health.

The report concluded that innovative biologicals represent significant advances; biosimilars are the option for more and more patients to have access to biotherapies in the fight against immunological, oncological and chronic degenerative diseases.

Conflict of interest
The authors of the report [1] declared that they are employees of Llorente y Cuenca, Mexico/USA.

Abstracted by Javier Marín, Americas Healthcare Practice Leader, Llorente y Cuenca, Mexico.

Related articles
Biosimilars in Spain: balance between innovation and health public expenditure

Biosimilars as a sustainable alternative for complex diseases

Biosimilars as a sustainable option for the health system in Argentina

The role of the patient in treatments with biosimilars in Argentina


The new section of the ‘Latin American Forum’ on GaBI has been launched. The objective of this new section is to provide you with all the latest news and updates on developments of generic and biosimilar medicines in Latin America in Spanish.

View last week’s headline article: Diferencias en inmunogenicidad, farmacovigilancia y documentos legales en productos biológicos en América Latina

Browse the news in the Latin American Forum!

Register to receive the GaBI Latin American Forum newsletter. Inform colleagues and friends of this new initiative.


Se ha lanzado la nueva sección del ‘Foro Latinoamericano’ sobre GaBI. El objetivo de esta nueva sección es brindarle las últimas noticias y actualizaciones sobre desarrollos de medicamentos genéricos y biosimilares en América Latina en español.

Vea el artículo principal de la semana pasada: Diferencias en inmunogenicidad, farmacovigilancia y documentos legales en productos biológicos en América Latina

iExplore las noticias en el Foro Latinoamericano!

Regístrese para recibir el boletín informativo GaBI Foro Latinoamericano. Informe a colegas y amigos sobre esta nueva iniciativa. 


1. Romero A, Marín J, Rosell G. Biológicos y biosimilares: un matrimonio de conveniencia que beneficia a la sociedad. Ideas LLYC. 2021 Aug 4.

Permission granted to reproduce for personal and non-commercial use only. All other reproduction, copy or reprinting of all or part of any ‘Content’ found on this website is strictly prohibited without the prior consent of the publisher. Contact the publisher to obtain permission before redistributing.

Copyright – Unless otherwise stated all contents of this website are © 2022 Pro Pharma Communications International. All Rights Reserved.

comment icon Comments (0)
Post your comment
Most viewed articles
About GaBI
Home/About GaBI Posted 06/08/2009
EU guidelines for biosimilars
EMA logo 1 V13C15
Home/Guidelines Posted 08/10/2010