For the biopharmaceutical industry partnering is a well-established practice.
The development and commercialisation of the autoimmune disorder mAb Rituximab, for example, involves Biogen Idec, Roche subsidiary Genentech, Chugai and Zenyaku in Japan and AryoGen in Iran.
Similarly, when drug industry group Transcelerate Biopharma was established in 2012 the idea was to foster greater collaboration between drug developers on the basis that more efficient R&D was good for the sector as a whole.
Celltrion top dealmaker
It is little wonder then that biosimilars firms hoping to tap into the market created by biopharma innovation use similar tactics. The infographic below illustrates the extent of partnering in the biosimilars space.
Leading the field, at least in terms of the number of collaborations, is South Korea’s Celltrion.
The firm, which filed its first biosimilar with the US FDA last month, has previously established development alliances with, amon others, Hospira, Egis, Hikma, Perrigo, Nippon Kayaku, BioGaran (Korean) and Mundipharma.
Celltrion is closely followed by Merck & Co, which has biosimilar-related deals with Hanwa, Samsung Bioepsis, and Fujifilm among others, with Baxter, Samsung Biologics and Actavis next on the list in terms of number of agreements.
Whether this partnering, and presumably risk sharing, approach to development will work for the biosimilars sector remains to be seen. But what is clear is that a few key firms are likely to benefit more than most if and when the market does take off.
And Biopharma-Reporter will be delving deeper into the issues affecting biosimilars with a free virtual event on September 26. Join four industry experts as they discuss the development, manufacture and sale of such products in a 60 minute seminar hosted by our Editor-in-Chief Gareth Macdonald. Click here for more details...