Ranbaxy Laboratories launches Infimab, the first Remicade biosimilar in India
GURGAON, India — Ranbaxy Laboratories on Monday announced the launch of Infimab (BOW015), the first Remicade (Infliximab) biosimilar in India. The product was launched at the Indian Rheumatology Association Conference in Chandigarh.
Infimab, is being introduced in the Indian market through a licensing partnership with Epirus Biopharmaceuticals, a U.S. and Swiss-based biopharmaceutical company focused on the global development and commercialization of biosimilar monoclonal antibodies. Infimab will be manufactured by Reliance Life Sciences at a facility in Mumbai. The innovator reference product is currently marketed for the treatment of inflammatory diseases including rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s Disease, ankylosing spondylitis, ulcerative colitis, psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis.
Infimab marks Ranbaxy’s entry into mAb (Monoclonal Antibodies) biologics, and will help the company provide greater access to quality biologic medicines in management of such conditions as rheumatoid arthritis.
“The product has been developed as per global standards and delivers a similar clinical outcome to the innovator," said Rajeev Sibal, VP and country head India region at Ranbaxy. "It will be available in India at a very significant discount as compared to the innovator drug. More Indian patients will get the benefit of a world-class biologic treatment.”
Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most common chronic inflammatory diseases that cause disability. The literature estimates a prevalence of 0.5% to 0.75% in India. To manage the disease, Indian rheumatologists are using Infliximab to treat only a select set of patients because it is very expensive.
“There has been an inordinate interest among the medical fraternity in India regarding the launch of Infimab as it is an affordable therapeutic alternative to Infliximab with equivalent clinical effectiveness," said Arvind Chopra, a consultant rheumatologist. "The availability of the new drug has widened our options to treat several forms of arthritis. This will increase patient access and many more Indian patients will benefit from this biologic treatment. The drug will not only be able to stop progression of rheumatoid arthritis but effectively control several of its complications that include bone damage, deformities and osteoporosis. Infimab also has an excellent treatment potential to treat other crippling painful arthritis like ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis."
With Ranbaxy's history of producing generics and attendant issues, why are they being allowed to do it again?
Cardinal Health enhances Diabetes Specialized Care Center for community pharmacists
DUBLIN, Ohio — Cardinal Health on Tuesday announced an enhancement to its Diabetes Specialized Care Center, which offers an array of training and educational tools, marketing support and other resources to help community pharmacists position themselves as local destinations for diabetes care. The enhancements include new education and training tools to help community pharmacists empower patients with diabetes to better understand the disease and better manage their overall health.
“[As many as] 29 million Americans live with diabetes, and 86 million have prediabetes,” said Steve Light, VP consumer health for Cardinal Health. “As the diabetes population continues to grow, we are committed to arming community pharmacists with innovative new tools to help patients make the kind of meaningful behavior changes that can have a significant impact on their health outcomes.”
Community pharmacies that use the company’s Diabetes Specialized Care Center can now access Conversation Map tools from Healthy Interactions. Conversation Maps are visual, hands-on educational materials that help foster small group, interactive patient, caregiver and staff learning and engagement. This turnkey solution provides everything a community pharmacy needs to market and deliver billable diabetes education to patients.
Enhancements also include ongoing online support to help patients track their progress and goals, and stay connected to their educator and peers. My Digital Health Coach, an online health coaching tool, creates personalized health-and-wellness action plans for managing diabetes, based on each patient’s unique goals and health conditions.
“Diabetes is a disease that cost the healthcare industry more than $245 billion last year alone,” Light said. “These innovative new tools help community pharmacists build deeper, more loyal relationships with their patients, with the ultimate goal of driving patient engagement, improving outcomes and reducing the costs of combating this disease.”
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GPhA names VP communications
WASHINGTON — The Generic Pharmaceutical Association on Tuesday announced that it has named Terry Bazyluk as VP communications, effective Dec. 1, 2014.
Bazyluk has served in senior communications roles for trade associations, corporate CEOs and presidential cabinet secretaries Madeleine Albright, Colin Powell and Robert Reich. His strengths in policy and politics include a legal background and experience working on two winning presidential campaigns. Bazyluk joins GPhA after almost a decade as head of executive communications at Freddie Mac. During a career of more than 25 years, he has gained broad expertise with a range of science, technology and policy subjects.
“We’re delighted to have Terry join the GPhA team. As a top-tier communications professional, he has demonstrated the exceptional writing, messaging and advocacy skills that will cement GPhA’s position as the leading voice of the generic industry,” said Ralph Neas, GPhA president and CEO. “Hiring Terry strengthens our efforts to underscore the immense contribution generic medicines make to the healthcare system and to the patients who depend on them.”
“I’m thrilled to join GPhA,” Bazyluk said. “At a time when containing healthcare costs is more important than ever, the generic pharmaceutical industry has an unequalled track record of delivering quality medicine at lower costs. I am especially excited to work on behalf of an industry that improves so many lives.”
Bazyluk received his bachelor's degree in philosophy from Harvard University and his J.D. from the Yale Law School. Before entering the communications field, he was a law clerk to two federal judges and worked as an attorney at the U.S. Department of Justice and the Washington law firm of Covington & Burling.
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