Biosimilars: Surveying the Market Landscape and Biosimilars Regulatory Update: An Evolving Landscape

29 Aug 2011 • by Natalie Aster

From their early beginnings in the mid-70s, biopharmaceuticals have grown in size and focus to become a force to be reckoned with. Yet despite their promise, the biologics and biosimilars industries are facing challenging times.

While biologics are fast-growing, they are also typically 20 times more expensive than traditional medicines, making them problematic with payers and governments alike. And although biosimilars represent a strong new development and revenue stream, they are technically difficult to develop, fraught with safety issues and face lengthy approvals processes.

With the pending release next month of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) guidelines for biosimilar monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), however, the ground rules are about to change.

Against this backdrop, are biosimilars worth the effort?

FirstWord can help you find the answers. For a limited time, FirstWord is offering a combination package of two top-selling reports: Biosimilars: Surveying the Market Landscape and Biosimilars Regulatory Update: An Evolving Landscape. In the first report, FirstWord answers the most pressing questions facing the biosimilars industry. It reviews early entrants and current leaders, as well as biosimilar production from manufacturing and marketing to the regulatory landscape across EU and American markets.

 The second report picks up where the first left off, by reviewing the EMA’s new biosimilar mAb draft guidelines, cast against the FDA’s consideration of just how biosimilar approval should proceed in the US. Containing a full breakdown of clinical and non-clinical requirements by the EMA, immunogenicity assessments, a guide to the FDA’s position and a section on pharmacovigilance, the report is an accurate state-of-play on a dynamic and shifting industry.

From Canada and the US to Japan, the EU and Australia, regulators around the world are establishing guidelines that will pave the way for competition between biosimilars and costly biologics.

For many, biosimilars represent a new and highly lucrative revenue stream for the pharmaceutical industry. This is increasingly important as many biologics—which are often 20 times the cost of traditional drugs—soon lose patent protection.

Promising as they may be, biosimilars face significant hurdles: a lack of stakeholder confidence, high manufacturing and distribution costs, a lengthy approvals process and more recently, the announcement next month of the European Medicine Agency’s guidelines for biosimilar monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) development.

Report Details:

Biosimilars: Surveying the Market Landscape (October, 2010)

Biosimilars Regulatory Update: An Evolving Landscape (February, 2011)

Special biosimilars combination offer costs $695 a copy

The reports:

  • Examine the regulatory environment in the EU and how it may impact US regulations;
  • Review target biopharmaceutical products;
  • Identify biosimilar leaders, innovators and emerging companies;
  • Review EMA guidelines specifics, including safety requirements;
  • Examine key issues facing biosimilar developments and how legislation may ease barriers;
  • Review immunogenicity assessments and include sections on pharmacovigilance and biosimilarity.

Key Issues Examined

With biosimilar mAbs already available in less-regulated pharmaceutical markets, the real challenge for manufacturers now lies in successfully meeting the more stringent regulatory requirements of developed markets.

Despite the breadth of topics presented for discussion at the FDA’s 2-day public consultation concerning a biosimilars approval pathway, there was considerable consensus.

The regulatory system needs to ensure that biosimilars are as safe and effective as the reference product. But is this even possible for such complex molecules? Economically, there is a need to balance the incentive to innovate with the need for lower prices and greater access.

Who are the successful biosimilar manufacturers likely to be? Since biosimilars are very different from traditional generics, it’s an open question. Brand development is important and direct marketing to small numbers of specialists is required. These are not the skills traditional generics manufacturers have.

To order this special combination offer of “Biosimilars: Surveying the Market Landscape and Biosimilars Regulatory Update: An Evolving Landscape” by FirstWord, or for further information on the reports’ content, please contact


MarketPublishers, Ltd.

Tanya Rezler

Tel: +44 208 144 6009

Fax: +44 207 900 3970