BioFinance Vision: Are Pfizer and Novartis in the biosimilar saddle?

By Dan Stanton

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Rheumatoid arthritis

With Pfizer closing in on Hospira and Sandoz set to launch Zarxio in the US, it’s been a defining week for biosimilars, our BioFinance Vision feature explains.

Welcome to BioFinance Vision, our regular digest of the comings and goings on the financial side of the bioprocessing industry, and this week we are looking at recent biosimilar developments.

First up is pharma behemoth Pfizer, which may be just days away from completing its $17bn (Eur15.5bn) takeover of Lake Forest, Illinois-based Hospira.

While the deal will bulk out Pfizer’s drug and device portfolio, Hospira is a major player in the biosimilars industry with ongoing commercialisation deals with such drugmakers as Korea’s Celltrion.

If the US FTC and EU’s Competition Commission rule in favour of the takeover, Pfizer will have more biosimilars in development than any other biopharma firm, as this handy infographic​ shows.

Pfizer will also have the commercialisation rights to Inflectra, the copycat version of Janssen’s rheumatoid arthritis mAb Remicade which was launched in Eastern Europe last year and in several major EU countries in February, cutting in to J&J’s second quarter sales.

But the biggest biopharma news this week involved Novartis’ subsidiary Sandoz which, after its product Zarxio became the first biosimilar product to be approved by the US FDA in March​, got the green light this week to launch its version of Amgen’s Neupogen in the lucrative US market in early September.

Amgen’s US sales for Neupogen were $840m in 2014, so we will keep a close eye on how Zarxio fares in the unchartered territory that is the US biosimilar space.

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1 comment

Great article

Posted by David Mazelier,

This is quite a fascinating article

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