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Pune-based Enzene Biosciences launches cancer drug Cetuximab

Cetuximab is a therapeutic chimeric monoclonal antibody that is used as a targeted therapy for metastatic colorectal Cancer (mCRC) and cancer of the head and neck

Pune-based Enzene Biosciences has launched Cetuximab as the first biosimilar to cancer. Sold under the brand name Erbitux, Cetuximab is a therapeutic chimeric monoclonal antibody that is used as a targeted therapy for metastatic colorectal Cancer (mCRC) and cancer of the head and neck, with eight weeks of treatment costing about $30,000 for a single patient. Enzene Biosciences has earned the distinction of being the first company to achieve this goal, thereby leading the charge in helping fight the third most common and the second largest cause of death due to cancer across the world today.

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Commenting on the launch of Cetuximab, Dr Himanshu Gadgil, CEO, Enzene Biosciences, added, “Recognising the fact that biosimilars are an innovative alternative to expensive biologics as a treatment option for a wide range of ailments like cancer, we at Enzene Biosciences have been developing a range of biosimilars for the US, EU, APAC, MENA and LATAM regions.

Cetuximab is the latest offering in our pipeline of biosimilars, which is being manufactured using our patented continuous manufacturing platform and will considerably bring down the treatment costs for mCRC and cancer of the head and neck for our Indian patients.”

Cetuximab binds to specific cancer cell surface receptors (EGFR) and competitively inhibits the epidermal growth factor (EGF) binding. Acting like an inhibitor to prevent cell growth and metastasis, Enzene’s Cetuximab has potentially fewer risks for patients and will be marketed at a cost, several folds lower than the usual cost of the biologic Cetuximab. This advantage can be attributed to Enzene’s pioneering efforts in Continuous Bioprocess Manufacturing and extending the legacy of parent company Alkem Laboratories, known as India’s generic and speciality pharmaceutical forerunner with a global presence.

Sandeep Singh, MD, Alkem Industries stated, “Alkem has been at the forefront of bringing drugs into the Indian market for many years. With the strongest pipeline of biosimilars in the country, Enzene Biosciences has already launched five such biosimilars in a short span of 24 months and is on track to launch two more in the next few months. We aspire to aggressively promote Cetuximab, an affordable option to Erbitux for our Indian patients with head and neck cancer. Moreover, Enzene is committed to continuing working on such innovative technologies to combat the rising prices of essential drug molecules and alleviate the financial burden borne by affected Indian patients and many more across the globe.”

 

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