Public health body NICE has favored two Remicade biosimilars ahead of the reference drug in draft guidance.
The United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has reportedly recommended two biosimilar versions of infliximab over Remicade, the top-selling original medicine patented by Janssen/MSD (Merck) – which makes more than $8 billion a year in sales.
The two biosimilars, Inflectra and Remsima are both manufactured by Celltrion and distributed by several different firms in Europe, after gaining approval earlier this year. The products are recommended in draft guidance from NICE as both first and second line approaches in treating rheumatoid arthritis.
With NICE representing the NHS, its recommendation of the two biosimilars ahead of Remicade is not surprising, as it seeks to lessen the burden on the public health purse.