Over the past decade, the number of clinical trials using a biosimilar treatment has been on the rise.
GlobalData extracted all biosimilar drug trials up to 21 December 2018 and then broke them down by the top 10 drugs in clinical trials.
Top 10 drugs in biosimilar trials
The number one drug in biosimilar clinical trials by count is adalimumab biosimilar, referencing the branded biologic Humira. The drug is a tumour necrosis factor (TNF) blocker used for the treatment of a variety of autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and plaque psoriasis.
The third highest biosimilar by trial count, shown in Figure 1, is infliximab biosimilar for the treatment of the same indications. Etanercept biosimilar, coming in at sixth position, is also a TNF blocker used for autoimmune indications.
The second drug on the list is rituximab biosimilar, a treatment for oncology indications such as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This drug is also in clinical trials for autoimmune diseases, much like the three biosimilars discussed above. Bevacizumab biosimilar and trastuzumab biosimilar are both aimed at oncology indications specifically, such as certain colorectal, lung, brain, kidney, and cervical cancers, and breast cancer.
However, if you count filgrastim and the pegylated version, pegfilgrastim, together in Figure 1, these two drugs would have the highest clinical trial count by far. They are treatments for neutropenia, a haematological disorder, which was the third highest therapy area by count. Filgrastim is a recombinant-DNA form of naturally occurring granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF). It works by stimulating the body to increase neutrophil production. The two drugs at the bottom of the list, epoetin alfa and darbepoetin alfa, are also treatments for a haematological disorder, namely anaemia, which was the third highest indication.
Figure 1: Top 10 drugs in biosimilar clinical trials