Rare Disease

Amgen is developing a biosimilar of the drug, ABP 959, and during last week’s 24th Congress of the European Hematology Association, held from June 13-16 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, researchers reported on findings from a phase 1 trial of the proposed product.
The researchers wrote that that a numerically larger proportion of patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) stopped or reduced their doses of immunosuppressive therapies than started or increased, and that symptom improvement or worsening were the main reasons for changes to concomitant therapy.
Russian drug manufacturer Generium Pharmaceutical, which specializes in orphan drugs, announced yesterday that it has received Russian marketing approval for its biosimilar eculizumab, referencing Soliris, the most expensive orphan drug in Russia.
On this Rare Disease Day, learn more about how biosimilars are poised to help treat patients with rare diseases. 
Advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs), including gene therapies, cell therapies, and tissue engineering products, are providing groundbreaking approaches to treating rare diseases. However, the costs associated with these drugs are expected to pose challenges for affordability and the sustainability. A newly published paper looked ahead to the potential for—and challenges related to—biosimilars of ATMPs.
 
Corticosteroids are often given as therapy for neurosarcoidosis, but there remains a need for more effective treatment, and infliximab is increasingly used in this context.
Finnish-based biosimilar developer, Paras Biopharmaceuticals Finland Oy, said this week that it is ready to begin testing its potential romiplostim biosimilar in clinical trials.
JCR Pharmaceuticals announced yesterday that it has launched its biosimilar agalsidase beta product, referencing Fabrazyme, in Japan for the treatment of Fabry disease. JCR developed the drug in partnership with Amicus Therapeutics and GlaxoSmithKline.
 
In recent years, spending on specialty drugs, including spending on a proliferation of orphan drugs that treat rare diseases, has raised concerns about sustainability of the healthcare system. 
Pemphigus vulgaris (PV) is a rare immune-mediated skin disorder, typically occurring in middle-aged and older adults, that involves painful blistering of the skin and mucous membranes. While many patients are well controlled on systemic corticosteroid treatment, steroid-sparing therapy can be desirable for treating moderate to severe forms of the disease, and rituximab is one such agent to show promise in this indication.
 

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Health economics experts. Managed care professionals. Key clinical specialists. This is where the worlds of clinical, regulatory, and economical outcomes for specialized pharmaceutical biotechnology meet: The Center for Biosimilars is your online resource for emerging technologies, with a focus on improving critical thinking in the field to impact patient outcomes. We’ll discuss the current landscape for advanced health care management—reviewing emerging treatment paradigms, approaches, and considerations—all by authoritative industry voices.

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