Pfizer Launches Biosimilar to J&J’s RemicadeBy
Pfizer has launched Inflectra (infliximab-dyyb) for injection, a biosimilar of Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) anti-inflammatory drug, Remicade (infliximab), and will begin shipment of Inflectra to wholesalers in the US in late November 2016. Remicade is J&J’s top-selling drug with 2015 worldwide sales of $6.56 billion. Remicade in the US is indicated for treating Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, and plaque psoriasis.
Pfizer holds exclusive commercialization rights to Celltrion’s Inflectra in the US and has already introduced the product in other markets across the globe. Celltrion is an Incheon, Korea-based life sciences company. Inflectra will be introduced at a 15% discount to the current wholesaler acquisition cost of Remicade.
Hospira, now a Pfizer company following Pfizer’s $17 billion acquisition of Hospira in 2015, entered into a business cooperation agreement with Celltrion in 2009 for several biosimilar products, including a potential biosimilar to Remicade (infliximab). Pfizer has exclusive commercialization rights to the proposed biosimilar infliximab in the US and certain other jurisdictions.
Remicade was the first anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha treatment approved in the United States in August 1998. Cellitron’s biosimilar version of the drug was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in April 2016.