Cheap biosimilars to come from India and China

Biosimilars/News | Posted 21/10/2011

On 19-20 September 2011, the United Nations (UN) held a High-Level Meeting to develop a global strategy to fight non-communicable diseases, ‘principally cardiovascular diseases, cancers, chronic respiratory diseases and diabetes.’ It is only the second global health issue that the UN General Assembly has deemed urgent enough to call a meeting to discuss. Such diseases cause approximately two-thirds of all deaths.

A snapshot of interesting new approvals by FDA

Biosimilars/News | Posted 14/10/2011

New approvals by FDA look set reach record levels in 2011. Some noteworthy drugs already approved in 2011 are discussed below.

EMA plans to revise biosimilar guidelines

Biosimilars/News | Posted 07/10/2011

EMA announced on 3 October 2011 that it has published a concept paper asking for comments on topics to be included in a potential revision of the agency’s 2006 biosimilar guideline, which covers non-clinical and clinical development of biosimilars. The paper will be released for a 3-month consultation period.

Biosimilar user fee levels and performance goals for the FDA

Biosimilars/News | Posted 07/10/2011

FDA and representatives from the drug industry negotiating a user fee for biosimilars have tentatively set performance goals and biosimilar user fee levels, creating a separate review programme for biosimilars.

FDA new drug approvals up in 2011: 900 biotech drugs in development

Biosimilars/News | Posted 07/10/2011

FDA had already approved 26 new drugs by the end of August 2011 compared to only 21 approved in 2010. Of note were six cancer drugs and two ground-breaking drugs for hepatitis C. The current year looks likely set a record for recent years for new drug approvals, which may total 35–40 by the end of 2011. After a slow start in the first two months with three new drug approvals and nine rejections in January and February 2011, FDA approved four new drugs, two of which were monoclonal antibodies, in March and five in April. Of the 11 new drugs approved in the first four months, only three biologicals were approved.

Boehringer Ingelheim joins other Big Pharma going into biosimilars

Biosimilars/News | Posted 30/09/2011

Big Pharma is once again taking a major interest in biosimilars. The latest big pharmaceutical player to show an interest is biopharmaceutical specialist Boehringer Ingelheim. The German-based company announced on 26 September 2011 that it would create a dedicated division for the development and commercialisation of biosimilars.

Amphastar’s biosimilar enoxaparin approved by FDA – Momenta launches lawsuit

Biosimilars/News | Posted 30/09/2011

On 19 September 2011, and after years of conflict with FDA, Amphastar Pharmaceuticals (Amphastar) finally received approval to market a biosimilar version of sanofi-aventis’s blockbuster blood-thinner Lovenox (enoxaparin). The announcement, however, was closely followed by news that Momenta Pharmaceuticals (Momenta) had launched a lawsuit against Amphastar.

Generics and biosimilars affected by Obama’s deficit plans

Biosimilars/News | Posted 23/09/2011

US President Barack Obama’s plan for economic growth and deficit reduction, announced on 19 September 2011, recommends a series of healthcare reforms. The proposals include higher drug rebates for low-income patients, banning pay-to-delay deals between generics and originator companies and reducing biologicals exclusivity from 12 to seven years. The proposals aim to save US$320 billion in healthcare spending over 10 years.

Sanofi announces new long-term objectives

Biosimilars/News | Posted 23/09/2011

At a ‘strategy and outlook’ seminar for investors held on 6 September 2011, sanofi-aventis (sanofi) CEO Mr Christopher A Viehbacher commented on the group’s outlook. The group has undergone radical changes since 2008, when it was faced with losing several blockbuster drugs over a relatively short time period, the so-called ‘patent cliff’. The main action sanofi took was to buy biotech company Genzyme and thus gain access to the biosimilars, rare diseases and multiple sclerosis markets. However, other actions not so interesting to the media have also played a great part in the company’s repositioning.

Hospira looks to biosimilars and increased use of generics for growth

Biosimilars/News | Posted 16/09/2011

Injectable generics leader, Hospira, announced on 7 September 2011 at its investor day, that it will look to biosimilars and international expansion for future growth.