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Oncobiologics and Viropro make biosimilar deal Posted 01/03/2013

US-based Oncobiologics and monoclonal antibody developer Viropro announced on 25 February 2013 that they had signed a biosimilar collaboration agreement between the two companies.

Under the terms of the agreement, Viropro will manufacture six monoclonal antibody products, currently being developed by Oncobiologics. The products include biosimilar version of Avastin (bevacizumab), Erbitux (cetuximab), Herceptin (trastuzumab), Humira (adalimumab), Rituxan (rituximab) and a non-disclosed biological used for cancer and immune-disease indications.

Viropro will gain the rights to commercialize the six biosimilars in more than 70 emerging market countries (excluding China), and will have exclusive commercialization rights in Malaysia. In addition, the companies will co-manage Alpha Biologics (Penang, Malaysia), the manufacturing arm of Viropro.

The six biosimilars represent annual global revenues of more than US$40 billion with more than US$6 billion in the emerging countries covered by the agreement.  Viropro’s revenues from the six biosimilars are expected to grow to US$60–150 million annually within 10 years.

Oncobiologics Founder and CEO, Dr Pankaj Mohan, said that Viropro is ‘an ideal partner’ due to the combination of ‘a state-of-the-art biologic[al]s manufacturing facility and support from the Malaysian Government.’ He added that the partnership allows the two companies ‘to bring together technical expertise and quality oversight from the US with a high capability, low cost biologic[al]s operation in Malaysia.’

The two companies intend to seek regional partners to drive commercialization in the emerging market countries, and plan to launch their first product by late 2014.

This is not the first collaboration for biosimilars that Oncobiologics has entered into. Back in November 2011, the company announced a strategic partnership that will allow Boston Oncology to license, manufacture and commercialize four of Oncobiologics’ biosimilar therapies for cancer and immunological diseases in the Middle East and North African (MENA) regions [1].

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Reference

1.  GaBI Online - Generics and Biosimilars Initiative. The latest biosimilars agreements [www.gabionline.net]. Mol, Belgium: Pro Pharma Communications International; [cited 2013 Mar 1]. Available from: www.gabionline.net/Biosimilars/News/The-latest-biosimilars-agreements

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Source: Oncobiologics, Viropro

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