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Biosimilar Drugs for Psoriasis: Principles, Present, and Near Future

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Published:31st May 2018
Author: Carrascosa JM, Jacobs I, Petersel D, Strohal R.
Availability: Free full text
Ref.:Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2018 Jun;8(2):173-194.
Biosimilar Drugs for Psoriasis: Principles, Present, and Near Future

Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory, lifelong disease with a high prevalence (afflicting approximately 1–5% of the population worldwide) and is associated with significant morbidity. The introduction of biologic therapies has improved the management of this disease. Multiple biologic medicines that block cytokine signaling, including tumor necrosis factor (TNF) antagonists (adalimumab, etanercept, and infliximab) and inhibitors of interleukin (IL)-17 (brodalumab, ixekizumab, and secukinumab), IL-23 (guselkumab), or IL-12/23 (ustekinumab), are approved for the treatment of psoriasis. Despite the clinical benefits associated with use of biologics in psoriasis, many patients are not treated with biologic therapy, and access to treatment may be limited for various reasons, such as high treatment costs. Patents for many biologics have expired or will soon expire, and biosimilar versions of these agents are available or in development. A biosimilar is a biological product that is highly similar to an approved biologic (i.e., originator or reference) product, and has no clinically meaningful differences in safety, purity, or potency when compared with the reference product. Biosimilars may offer less expensive treatment options for patients with psoriasis; they also may increase access to and address problems with underutilization of biologic therapy. Biosimilar development and approval follows a well-regulated process in many countries, with guidelines developed by the European Medicines Agency, US Food and Drug Administration, and World Health Organization. Currently, several anti-TNF biosimilars are available for use in patients with psoriasis, and other monoclonal antibodies are in development. This review provides dermatologists and those who treat and/or manage psoriasis with a working knowledge of the scientific principles of biosimilar development and approval. It also examines real-world experience with biosimilars available for or used in dermatology that will enable physicians to make informed treatment decisions for their patients with psoriasis.

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