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Biosimilars approved in Australia

Last update: 28 August 2015

In Australia, the legal framework for approving medicines was established via the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989.

‘Similar biologics’ approved and marketed in India

Last update: 28 August 2015

There have been established guidelines for approving generic versions of small molecule chemical drugs in India for some time already. However, no specific guidelines for ‘similar biologics’, as the Indian regulatory authorities call these products, have existed in India until recently. This has been the case despite the fact that the requirements for granting regulatory approval for such ‘similar biologics’ required more data than for a simple generic drug application [1].

Australian approval for infliximab biosimilar

South Korean biotechnology company Celltrion announced on 10 August 2015 that its partner Hospira had gained approval from Australia’s drug regulator, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), for the infliximab biosimilar Inflectra.

Biosimilars approved in the US

Last update: 14 August 2015

In the US, a legal framework for approving biosimilars was established in 2009, via the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 (BPCI Act).

ACR position statement on biosimilars addresses naming and substitution

The American College of Rheumatology (ACR) has issued a position statement on biosimilars, reflecting its views on issues such as interchangeability, substitution, naming and post-marketing surveillance of biosimilars.

Polish firm gets EIB loan for biosimilars development

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is lending Euros 45 million (around Zloty 185 million) to the largest Polish manufacturer of pharmaceuticals, Polpharma, for its research into, and development of, biosimilars.

Biosimilars of rituximab

Last update: 3 July 2015

Rituximab is a chimeric monoclonal antibody against the protein CD20, which is primarily found on the surface of immune system B cells. Rituximab destroys B cells and is therefore used to treat diseases that are characterized by excessive number of B cells, overactive B cells or dysfunctional B cells. This includes many lymphomas, leukaemias, transplant rejection and autoimmune disorders.

Concerns raised over Australian decision to substitute biosimilars

In May 2015, Australia’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) recommended that originator biologicals could be substituted by biosimilars by physicians and pharmacists [1]. However, pharmacy companies, as well as physician and patient groups have reacted with concern over the decision.

Biosimilars of infliximab

Last update: 26 June 2015

Infliximab is a chimeric monoclonal antibody against tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α). It is used to treat autoimmune diseases, such as ankylosing spondylitis, Crohn’s disease, psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ulcerative colitis.

Biosimilars of adalimumab

Last update: 26 June 2015

Adalimumab is a human monoclonal antibody that treats autoimmune diseases by inhibiting tumour necrosis factor (TNF); a soluble inflammatory cytokine. Adalimumab binds to TNF-alpha (TNFα), preventing it from activating TNF receptors, which cause the inflammatory reactions associated with autoimmune diseases. Adalimumab is indicated for the treatment of rheumatoid, juvenile idiopathic and psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, Crohn’s disease, psoriasis and ulcerative colitis.

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