Remicade biosimilars launched
26.02.2015 - It is the first biosimilar monoclonal antibody in many European markets: Mundipharma and Hospira are launching Celltrion’s Remicade generic.
It was a good run for Janssen Biotech and its Antirheumatic biologic Remicade (infliximab). The blockbuster drug has yielded record sales, netting the company and its commercialisation partner Merck & Co billions of dollar in sales. But now, the companies are in for some stormy weather: just hours after the patent of the drug expired, the first biosimilars were launched on European Markets.
Mundipharma International Ltd is launching Remsima this month in Germany, Italy, UK and Benelux. The British company had secured distribution rights from Celltrion Healthcare Hungary Kft for Remsima in these markets. Meanwhile, rival Hospira, newly acquired by Pfizer, is launching its own version of the biosimilar, Inflectra, in the UK, Germany and Italy as well as France, Austria, Denmark, Greece, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, and Sweden. Hospira and Celltrion have a long-standing partnership that allows both to market the infliximab biosimilar under their own brands.
Infliximab biosimilar is the first biosimilar monoclonal antibody approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). It is authorised to treat the same conditions as its reference product Remicade: rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis. It remains to be seem how big a chunk the copycat products can take from Remicade’s earnings.
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