Samsung Bioepis Co., Ltd. and Biogen announced pooled analysis results of three anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF) biosimilars – BENEPALI (SB4, etanercept biosimilar), FLIXABI (SB2, infliximab biosimilar), and IMRALDI (SB5, adalimumab biosimilar) – which will be presented at the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR 2018) held June 13–16 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. “Since BENEPALI and FLIXABI launched more than two years ago, they have played an increasingly important role in widening access to life-enhancing treatment options for patients and healthcare systems across Europe,” said Chul Kim, Head of Clinical Sciences Division, Samsung Bioepis. “We remain committed to advancing our strong pipeline of biosimilar candidates, so that more patients and healthcare systems across the region will be able to benefit from biosimilars.”
Data from three separate Phase III randomized, double-blind studies compared the efficacy and safety of BENEPALI in reference to etanercept (ETN); FLIXABI to infliximab (INF); and IMRALDI to adalimumab (ADL). The data were pooled and analyzed to assess the impact of anti-drug antibodies (ADAbs) on efficacy and tolerability, as well as radiographic progression by disease activity state. Each clinical study had similar study designs and population demographics, and the same primary endpoint of ACR20 response rate. All patients included in the studies had been diagnosed with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA) despite previous methotrexate treatment. “This analysis presents a unique opportunity to compare the efficacy of three anti-TNFs in slowing the progression of joint erosion in patients with moderate to severe RA, as measured by radiographic progression,” said Ian Henshaw, Global Head of Biogen’s Biosimilar Unit. “We look forward to continuing to collaborate with Samsung Bioepis to provide guidance on treatment algorithms and as we work toward our goal of expanding access to biosimilars for patients who may benefit in Europe and around the world.”
Immunogenicity data from 1,710 patients with RA pooled from the three studies revealed that the incidence of ADAb was comparable between the biosimilars and their reference products – indicating that the biosimilars were equally effective as their biologic counterparts. In addition, efficacy and injection site reactions/infusion related reactions (ISR/IRR) were evaluated in relation to the presence of ADAb. Data suggested that the development of ADAb is associated with reduced clinical efficacy and increased incidence of ISR/IRR in patients with RA. Radiographic data from 1263 patients participating in the studies were collected and grouped based on patient’s disease activity state at the time of the primary endpoint assessment (Week 24 or Week 30). Radiographic progression was measured using the modified Total Sharp Score (mTSS) at Week 0 and Week 52 or Week 54. Overall, radiographic progression was minimal and comparable across all treatment groups. In addition, the pooled biosimilar group tended to have a lower mean change in mTSS compared with the pooled reference group, which slows down the progression of this disease.
Since the European Commission granted marketing authorization for BENEPALI and FLIXABI in 2016, the two biosimilars have treated nearly 80,000 patients across 23 countries. In addition, Samsung Bioepis and Biogen expect to launch IMRALDI in Europe in October 2018 and, as a result, are on track to be the first in the industry to bring biosimilars referencing products for all three first-generation anti-TNF therapies to European patients and healthcare systems. – Medical Buyer Bureau