Biosimilars Create Competition, Savings in EU Markets

May 15, 2017

Biosimilars consistently drive down average drug prices in markets where they are introduced, according to a report ordered by the European Commission.

Researchers examined six medicine classes in which biosimilars are approved: epoetin (EPO), granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF), human growth hormone (HGH), anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF), fertility and insulin products. The European Union has approved 28 biosimilars, more than five times that of the U.S.

An analysis of average list prices in the European Economic Area found the introduction of biosimilars for EPO and G-CSF accompanied a 27 percent average price drop in the total market for both classes, while biosimilars for HGH led to a 15 percent drop and biosimilars for anti-TNF led to a 10 percent drop. The average price reduction in the total market was lower for fertility and insulin drugs—only 4 percent and 1 percent, respectively.

The report highlighted the advantages of being first to the market — especially that those biosimilars typically claim the highest biosimilar market share.

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