AstraZeneca considering entering biosimilars market

12/23/2008

LONDON AstraZeneca may soon start developing biosimilars, according to published reports.

David Brennan, the company’s CEO, told the Financial Times that depending on legislation being considered, the Anglo-Swedish drug maker might expand into creating follow-on versions of biologics that have lost patent protection.

Merck and Eli Lilly have also said they might develop biosimilars. Merck announced earlier this month that it would create a new biosimilars division, Merck BioVentures, to make follow-on and novel biologics using engineering technology from GlycoFi, a company it acquired in 2006. The Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based drug maker plans to launch its first biosimilar, the anemia drug MK-2578, in 2012 and have at least five biosimilar candidates at that time.

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