United States : POTENTIAL $246 Million biosimilar drug deal with Baxter signed by Coherus
Coherus Biosciences Inc. signed a contract valued at $246 Million to grow and commercialize biosimilar drugs generally generic versions of brand-name biologic treatments with Baxter International Inc.
In the contract, which is aimed on growing a biosimilar of the Amgen Inc. rheumatoid arthritis drug Enbrel, Redwood City's Coherus will get $30 million upfront from Deerfield, Ill.-based Baxter (NYSE: BAX). Coherus could make $216 Million more in development and regulatory milestone payments.The companies stated that the contract deal also could include another product.
Denny Lanfear, CEO of 3-year-old Coherus said, This agreement further validates our unique business model and capability to blobally develop products from conception through approval .
Under an agreement with Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE), Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN) sells the drug in the United States and Canada under an agreement with Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE).
China's Shanghai CP Guojian Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. has made a biosimilar of Enbrel, known as Etacept. In April, the Indian pharmaceutical company Cipla stated that it cut a deal with the Chinese company to distribute Etacept in India, where it said the biosimilar would cost 30 percent less than Enbrel.
Guidelines for the approval and use of biosimilar are not set by the Food and Drug Administration. The biotech industry has raised worries regarding the protection of biosimilars as, unlike generics of chemical drugs, the process for manufacturing biologics is complex and fraught with pitfalls as it uses living cells.
In spite of this, biosimilars could cost 20 percent to 50 percent less than brand-name biologics, and the biotech industry has been going state-to-state to make it tougher to substitute biosimilars.