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Celltrion’s Remsima sellers in UK caught breaching promotion-related rules

[THE INVESTOR] Pfizer’s Hospira unit and Napp Pharmaceuticals broke a number of rules while covering the promotion of Korean-made biosimilar medicines, namely Celltrion’s Remsima, according to a UK publication devoted to medical issues.

Bio-pharma Reporter noted that the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority said Napp, an associate of Mundipharma International, made “unacceptable payments” to doctors who attended a meeting at which Remsima -- a Remicade biosimilar Hospira licenses from Celltrion -- which meant the event was “was not a genuine advisory board.”

Napp had launched Remsima in the UK on Feb. 25, 2015, just a day after Remicade’s patent expired. Hospira, meanwhile, broke Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry rules by “holding a meeting outside the UK for UK health professionals which was not a genuine advisory board, where its biosimilar medicines were promoted” according to the PMCPA.

PMCPA Director Heather Simmonds told Bio-pharma Reporter that both Hospira and Napp had signed undertakings not to repeat the breaches of ABPI code.

Remsima is a biosimilar version of Remicade which is sold by Janssen in the US, Merck & Co. in Europe and Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma in Japan. It was developed by Korea’s Celltrion.

Used to treat autoimmune disorders, Remsima was one of several biosimilars licensed by Hospira in 2009.

By Kim Ji-hyun (
Korea Herald daum