Biosimilars To Treat HER2-Positive Breast Cancers

The FDA recently approved five biosimilar drugs of Herceptin (Trastuzumab) to treat HER2-positive breast cancer, which will help make treatment more affordable and accessible for patients. About 25% of all breast cancers are HER2-positive. Since Herceptin is the most prescribed drug on the market in treating HER2-positive breast cancer, the introduction of five biosimilars of Herceptin is likely to help reduce healthcare costs of HER2-positive breast cancer patients and increase access to potentially life-saving treatment.

What are biosimilars?

While generic drugs are identical copies of the chemicals used in brand-name drugs, biosimilars are “almost identical” copies.

However, biosimilars are just as safe and effective as the brand-name drug, and do not have any “clinically meaningful” differences in safety, purity, strength, or potency.

“The introduction of biosimilars is an important step in increasing options for treating HER2-positive breast cancers. As patient advocates, we are working to ensure that patients are educated about biosimilars and can feel comforted that they are FDA approved and just as safe and effective as the original biologic drug,” said Paula Schneider, Chief Executive Officer of Susan G. Komen.

Breast cancer should not be a death sentence or lead to bankruptcy, and Herceptin biosimilars can help ensure the lives and wallets of HER2-positive breast cancer patients are saved.

The five biosimilars (Ogivri, Kanjinti, Herzuma, Ontruzant, and Trazimera) are not yet available to patients in the United States, but are expected to be in the near future.