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CCM and Biocon make biosimilar insulin deal Posted 11/01/2013

Malaysia-based Chemical Company of Malaysia Berhad (CCM), announced on 14 December 2012 an agreement between its subsidiary, CCM Pharmaceuticals Sdn Bhd (CCMP), and India-based Biocon, giving CCMP exclusive licence and distribution rights to market, sell and distribute a range of insulin products in Malaysia and Brunei.

The agreement with CCMP was made with Biocon’s subsidiaries Biocon SA of Switzerland for exclusive licensing and with Biocon Ltd and Biocon Malaysia Sdn Bhd for the supply and distribution of insulin products and will enable CCMP to bring the first biosimilar insulin onto the Malaysian market.

Mr Encik Amirul Feisal Wan Zahir, CCM’s Group Managing Director, said that ‘the collaboration was in line with CCM’s vision to pursue strategic partnerships to strengthen its pharmaceutical division’s equity and portfolio in niche therapeutic areas such as oncology, biosimilars and vaccines. While building our own portfolio of biosimilars, collaborations with global leaders such as Biocon provide great impetus to accelerate and strengthen our overall capabilities from developing generic pharmaceuticals, leveraging the expiry of innovator patents to marketing and distribution.’

‘Incidence of diabetes is fast reaching endemic proportions and all nations—rich and poor—are suffering from the impact of disease that has long-term ramifications on social and human development,’ he added.

According to Malaysian Ministry of Health statistics, three million Malaysians were diagnosed with diabetes up to 2011. Over two million others are estimated to be undiagnosed. The diabetes market is one of the largest and growing therapeutic class in the Malaysian pharmaceutical market. In 2011, the diabetes market was worth RM 277 million with a 10.6% growth.

This is not CCM’s first foray into biosimilars. In June 2012, the company announced that it was carrying out a clinical trial of biosimilar erythropoietin in Malaysia to treat end stage renal failure patients, in partnership with Korea-based biotechnology company PanGen Biotech [1].

This latest partnership for biosimilar insulins between CCMP, which is Malaysia’s largest generics company, and Indian biosimilars major Biocon is expected to bring value to the local insulin markets in Malaysia and Brunei, which is valued at about RM 90 million.

The deal follows the breakdown of Biocon’s biosimilar insulin agreement with Pfizer for worldwide marketing of Biocon’s biosimilar insulin products, which fell apart in March 2012 [2].

References

1.  GaBI Online - Generics and Biosimilars Initiative. Asian companies venture into biosimilars for kidney failure [www.gabionline.net]. Mol, Belgium: Pro Pharma Communications International; [cited 2013 Jan 11]. Available from: www.gabionline.net/Biosimilars/News/Asian-companies-venture-into-biosimilars-for-kidney-failure

2.  GaBI Online - Generics and Biosimilars Initiative. Pfizer and Biocon’s biosimilar insulin deal is off [www.gabionline.net]. Mol, Belgium: Pro Pharma Communications International; [cited 2013 Jan 11]. Available from: www.gabionline.net/Biosimilars/News/Pfizer-and-Biocon-s-biosimilar-insulin-deal-is-off

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Source: CCM

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