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Low-molecular-weight heparin biosimilars: potential implications for clinical practice. Australian Low-Molecular-Weight Heparin Biosimilar Working Group (ALBW).

Author(s): Nandurkar H(1), Chong B, Salem H, Gallus A, Ferro V, McKinnon R; Australian Low-Molecular-Weight Heparin Biosimilar Working Group (ALBW).

Affiliation(s): Author information: (1)Department of Medicine and Haematology, The University of Melbourne and St Vincent's Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Publication date & source: 2014, Intern Med J. , 44(5):497-500

A working group of clinicians and scientists was formed to review the clinical considerations for use of low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) biosimilars. LMWH are biological molecules of significant complexity; the full complexity of chemical structure is still to be elucidated. LMWH biosimilars are products that are biologically similar to their reference product and rely on clinical data from a reference product to establish safety and efficacy. The complex nature of LMWH molecules means that it is uncertain whether a LMWH biosimilar is chemically identical to its reference product; this introduces the possibility of differences in activity and immunogenicity. The challenge for regulators and clinicians is to evaluate the level of evidence required to demonstrate that a LMWH is sufficiently similar to the reference product. The consensus opinion of the working group is that prior to clinical use a LMWH biosimilar should have proven efficacy and safety, similar to the reference product with prospective studies, which should be confirmed with a proactive post-marketing pharmacovigilance programme.

Page last updated: 2015-08-10

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