Rheumatology

Adalimumab and infliximab showed the highest discontinuation rate due to patient remission, followed by golimumab, in the study of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
After treatment withdrawal, 58.3% of patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) had relapsed. Half of the relapses appeared within 6 months.
The authors write that these data add to the totality of the evidence supporting the biosimilarity of the biosimilar infliximab with its reference.
Magellan Rx Management, a pharmacy benefit manager (PBM), said today that its biosimilar management program has resulted in strong biosimilar uptake and significant drug cost savings for health plan organizations during its first year.
Last week, Health Canada approved Celltrion and Teva’s biosimilar rituximab, Truxima, for the treatment of adults with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and rheumatoid arthritis.
 
During this week’s 21st Congress of the Asia Pacific League of Associations for Rheumatology and Australian Rheumatology Association, held April 8-11 in Brisbane, Australia, multiple groups of researchers are reporting on the real-world use of biosimilars in rheumatology. According to these research teams, biosimilars are proving to be effective in the real-world clinical setting.
This week, rheumatology experts will gather in Brisbane, Australia, for the 21st Congress of the Asia Pacific League of Associations for Rheumatology (APLAR) and Australian Rheumatology Association (ARA), held April 8-11. During the meeting, several groups of researchers will discuss real-world experience with biosimilar infliximab in Asia.
The study is an open-label extension of a phase 3 trial that included 68 weeks of treatment with the biosimilar adalimumab, Amjevita, followed by an assessment visit at week 70 and an end-of-study visit at week 72.
Intravenous golimumab and infliximab are both widely used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in the United States, though these anti–tumor necrosis factor agents have markedly different dosing recommendations; patients who receive golimumab may receive 7 infusions during year 1, while patients who receive infliximab may receive between 8 and 14 infusions during year 1.
As legislators consider policy and regulatory options to lower the cost of prescription drugs, the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) is calling for an end to step therapy (or sometimes called “fail first” policies) as well as the switching of medications in stable patients purely for cost reasons.

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