Five big pharma deals in Humira market could save UK £300m

By Flora Southey contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/Chris Clor)
(Image: Getty/Chris Clor)

Related tags: Humira, AbbVie, Sandoz, Mylan

At least 80% of patients currently taking AbbVie’s blockbuster drug could be switched to “the best value biological medicine” within 12 months, according to the UK National Health Service.

NHS England has negotiated deals with Amgen, Biogen, Mylan and Fujifilm Kyowa Kirin, and Sandoz, to secure biosimilar versions of AbbVie’s blockbuster monoclonal antibody, Humira (adalimumab), for the UK market. A bid has also been accepted from AbbVie.

Originator biologic Humira is indicated for a number of conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and psoriasis.

According to the NHS, the agreements will provide up to £300m ($382m) in savings on low cost versions of its most costly drug.

“Harnessing the power of competition between drug companies, NHS England has now freed up hundreds of millions of pounds of savings to reinvest in patient care,” ​said NHS England chief executive, Simon Stevens, in a statement​.

Biosimilar versions of adalimumab are expected to be available to NHS patients next month, with at least 80% of patients currently taking Humira expected to be switched to a ‘best-value’ adalimumab product within 12 months.

EU Humira landscape

Patent protected-Humira secured sales of $4.1bn (€3.5bn) in Europe for the 12 months ending December 31, 2017, according to IQVIA.

However, since AbbVie’s European patent protection expired last month​, the firm finds itself competing with a number of biosimilar developers in the adalimumab market.

As of October, Humira rivals include Amgen’s Amgevia, Sandoz’s Hyrimoz, Samsung Bioepis’ Imraldi​, and Mylan’s Hulio​.

Related topics: Markets & Regulations, Biosimilars

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