Biosimilar Drug Approved for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Less expensive versions of costly biologic drugs have arrived, and more are on the way.
Drug manufacturers have recently devised methods to make approximate copies of some biologic drugs that, while not exact, are similar enough to the original to have the same therapeutic effect. The FDA decided to accept these biosimilars as long as the drugs meet strict standards of efficacy and safety. So far, two have been approved in the United States-Zarxio (a biosimilar of filgrastim) for cancer and Inflectra (a biosimilar of infliximab). In Europe, there are 22 biosimilar drugs.