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EMA approves follitropin alfa biosimilar

The European Medicines Agency’s (EMA’s) Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) announced on 23 January 2014 that it had recommended the granting of a marketing authorization for biosimilar infertility treatment Bemfola (follitropin alfa).

Trastuzumab ‘similar biologic’ to be launched in India

India-based Biocon announced on 18 January 2013 that it was introducing its trastuzumab ‘similar biologic’ CANMAb to the Indian market.

Mylan launches trastuzumab ‘similar biologic’ in India

Generics giant Mylan announced on 3 February 2014 that its subsidiary, Mylan Pharmaceuticals Private Limited, had launched its trastuzumab ‘similar biologic’ Hertraz to the Indian market.

Roche wins case against Herceptin ‘similar biologics’ producers

Generic drugmaker Mylan and its partner Biocon have been successfully sued by Roche for failing to carry out sufficient clinical trials on ‘similar biologics’ of the breast cancer blockbuster Herceptin (trastuzumab). Mylan and Biocon had recently announced plans to launch their ‘similar biologics’ in India [1, 2].

Pfizer to start phase III biosimilar trastuzumab trial

Pharma giant Pfizer is to start a global phase III trial for a biosimilar version of trastuzumab.

First biogeneric for Iran

Iran has developed the country’s first ‘biogeneric’ drug for cancer patients. The announcement was made in the presence of Iran’s Deputy Health Minister Hassan Hashemia at the beginning of February 2014, according to a report in the Tehran Times.

Celltrion files infliximab patent lawsuit in US

South Korean biotechnology company Celltrion filed a lawsuit on 31 March 2014 in a federal court in Massachusetts seeking a declaratory judgement that Janssen Biotech’s (Janssen) remaining patents on the reference drug Remicade (infliximab) are invalid and unenforceable.

Biosimilar merger for Epirus and collaboration for Catalent

Mergers and collaborations are still in vogue in the biosimilars arena. The latest firms to announce deals are Epirus Biopharmaceuticals (Epirus), which will merge with Zalicus; and Catalent, which has agreed to a biosimilar development collaboration with Zhejiang Hisun Pharma.

Sandoz advances biosimilars pipeline

Sandoz, the generics unit of Swiss pharma giant Novartis, announced on 28 April 2014 that it had reached several important milestones in the development of biosimilar etanercept, filgrastim and pegfilgrastim.

Lupin and Yoshindo start biosimilars joint venture

Indian generics’ manufacturer Lupin Pharmaceuticals (Lupin) announced on 21 April 2014 that the company had entered into a joint venture with Japanese generics maker Yoshindo for a biosimilars joint venture in Japan.