Earlier this week, Pfizer shipped its first batches of Retacrit (epoetin alfa-epbx) to wholesalers in the US. Epotein alfa is marketed by both J&J and Amgen, albeit under different names.
Retacrit was introduced at a wholesale acquisition cost (WAC) of $11.03 (€9.75) per 1,000 units/mL, representing a 57.1% discount compared to the WAC of Procrit, and 33.5% below that of Epogen.
While the WAC is not inclusive of discounts to payers, providers, distributors, and other purchasing organisations, the pricing represents a “substantial discount” compared to rival erythropoiesis-stimulating agents, according to Pfizer.
The launch comes six months after the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Retacrit for the treatment of anemia associated with chronic kidney disease, chemotherapy, and zidovudine use, among others.
Retacrit is the first biosimilar to Procrit and Epogen, and Pfizer’s third biosimilar to enter the US market. Inflectra (infliximab), a biosimilar version of J&J’s Remicade, launched in 2016, and Neupogen alternative, Nivestym (filgrastim-aafi), in 2018.