A couple days ago, Roche made the strategic decision not to defend its patent for Herceptin in India rather than be forced to grant another company a compulsory license. I guess they figured the learning curve would be greater for a potential biosimilar competitor than if that competitor received any help from a licensed product.
Well, it took all of a couple of days for Biocon to announce its plans to get a biosimilar version of Herceptin on the India market before year's end. They say they have completed the phase III trials and are ready to hit the ground with a product in 2013.
If this comes to pass, biosimilar competition will likely heat up a lot sooner in these emerging markets than anyone previously imagined. I also think governements will continue to support this happening and that the price benefits accruing to local econmies will also be much larger than the 30% that experts previously have touted for biosimilars. This can't be good news for MNCs generally in emerging markets if this trend holds up. Let the games begin. See Fierce Biotech.
Posted by Bruce Lehr Aug 21st 2013