Biosimilars in the New Year
Biosimilars are here to stay. In fact, they’re expected to continue to grow in popularity and accessibility. According to data from the Global & USA Biosimilar Market Analysis, biosimilars will likely account for 4% to 10% of the biologics market total by 20201, with that growth dependent on the number of biologics launched in the U.S. However, if the report is correct, the U.S. has the potential to be a major player in the biosimilar spectrum, with influential companies such as Amgen, Mylan, Pfizer, Sandoz and Hospira looking to impact the biosimilar market.
At the beginning of 2016, the FDA had at least four biosimilar applications pending review and 50 applications in the FDA review process.2 In 2015, the FDA approved Zarxio, a biosimilar from Sandoz, a Novartis company. Zarxio is used in part to prevent infection in cancer patients by boosting white blood cells; it was placed on the market at a 15% discount compared to the competing biologic Neupogen from the company Amgen3.
The FDA lists conditions4 such as rheumatoid arthritis, anemia, inflammatory bowel disease, skin conditions, and some forms of cancer and cancer-related conditions, such as a low white blood cell count, as some of the issues biosimilars are used to treat. As the popularity of biosimilars grow, it is likely that the conditions they treat will expand as well.
The cost-saving aspect of biosimilars is also expected to attract new developments, enabling these products to further infiltrate the healthcare and pharmacy markets. In fact, PWC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) expects biosimilar drugs to be priced at a 20-30% discount compared to competing biologics and to reduce U.S. drug spending by $40 billion by 20245.
When it comes to biosimilars, the question isn’t if or when they will become a major aspect of healthcare, but rather, what’s next for this rising industry? Learn more from Ron Lanton, at True North Political Solutions. See how CPR+ can help your specialty pharmacy in 2016!