Intercambiabilidad de medicamentos de origen biológico (biofármacos): Consideraciones acerca de la aprobación de formulaciones biosimilares (biogenéricos) en Chile
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Once drug patents expire, the health authorities can approve the registry of similar products. They must request to the manufacturer the bibliographic background of the original product and the analytical results that certify drug quality. An inspection of the premises of the manufacturer is also required. The main goal of Ibis approval is to decrease cost, considering that the original product is usually more expensive. This is a current situation due to the imminent expiration of the patents of many biopharmaceutical products. Therefore, in Chile, the Public Health (ISP) and the Ministry of Health should consider that for this kind of products, until now, there are no interchangeable generic drugs, and that the similar drugs that are offered have a different chemical composition, since they have been manufactured through different processes, In the case of biological drugs (e.g. erythropoietir, somatotropin, heparin) the quality and homogeneity depend from the manufacture process. Its complete composition can not be absolutely elucidated; therefore small impurities or conformational variants can elicit an altered immune response or unexpected adverse reactions. This indicates that the approval of a biogeneric drug requires in addition to pharmacokinetic studies, preclinical and clinical analytical studies such as physicochemical assays, biological and immunological test. This issues have been established by WHO and have been incorporated for the main drug registry entities all over the world (FDA, EME4, ANVISA) to approve biogeneric products.