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Biocon sees a sweet spot with its affordable insulin in US

The biotech firm is also planning to provide its rh-insulin to middle- and low-income countries at less than 10 cents a day. Biocon Biologics is chasing a revenue target of $1 billion in financial year 2021-22. In the previous fiscal year, its revenue had topped $200 million.

, ET Bureau|
Dec 05, 2019, 08.22 AM IST
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Biocon said it is strongly driven by economies of scale and “wellpositioned” to play the volumes game in the US, unlike peers.
BENGALURU: Biocon is planning to take its recombinant human (rh) insulin into the US market soon and has tabled an affordable price range for the diabetes drug to the US administration, the top executive of its subsidiary Biocon Biologics said.

“If you look at rh-insulin, I think it’s very interesting currently to look at the United States...We are heavily focusing on policy work, how can we work with key stakeholders in an administration, or with the FDA (US Food and Drug Administration) and having a dialogue to show options,” Christiane Hamacher told ET.

The Bengaluru-headquartered biotech firm is planning to provide rh-insulin to middle- and lowincome countries at less than 10 cents a day.

It has also charted an affordable price point for the US, the third largest country with a diabetic population, which analysts have flagged as a crisis.

Biocon Biologics is chasing a revenue target of $1 billion in financial year 2021-22. In the previous fiscal year, its revenue had topped $200 million.

Biocon has launched two biosimilars in the US market – pegfilgrastim and trastuzumab for cancer treatment – with partner Mylan.

Currently, rh-insulin prices are significantly higher and not covered under health insurance. The rh-insulin market is controlled by pharma majors such as Eli Lilly and Novo Nordisk.

In the US, rh-insulin retails at more than $5 a day and prices could increase further, Hamacher said. In a recent draft guidance on biosimilar drugs, the US FDA has sought to waive off certain advanced immunogenicity studies for a biosimilar or inter-changeable insulin, if analytical assessments show it to be “highly similar”.

Hamacher said this would significantly help in boosting acceptance of rh-insulin.

“We now have an opportunity to accelerate the entry into the market and the US, that has a diabetes crisis,” she said.

Biocon said it is strongly driven by economies of scale and “wellpositioned” to play the volumes game in the US, unlike peers.

Also Read

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Unable to afford insulin? This WHO initiative aims at helping diabetics by slashing prices

Biocon to reduce insulin prices to 10 cents per day

USFDA issues response letter for new drug application for insulin glargine: Biocon

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