Biosimilar Products for Sri Lankan Pharmaceutical Industry


A session on Biosimilar products for Sri Lanka pharmaceutical Industry was organized when Dr Lawrence Bank/Director General of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) visited Sri Lanka to take part in the SLASS Annual Sessions.

Market growth of reference drugs is limited by high cost which makes a financial burden on patients. Global Biosimilars Market is set surpass USD 69 billion by 2025; according to a new research study published by Global Market Insights, Inc. Cost effectiveness of biosimilars will be a major market boosting factor as it will lead to growing demand and adoption rate of the same. Biosimilars are usually less expensive as compared to other reference products such as biologics and bio betters. Implementation of safe and cost-effective biosimilars will further lead to health improvements and reducing the health expenditure.

Foreseeing the potential of biosimilars revolutionizing the local pharmaceutical industry, members of the Pharmaceutical Association, Pharmacology Departments of Universities and other Public and Private R & D Institutions were invited to share the knowledge and experience of Dr Lawrence Banks.

Dr Banks in his presentation enlightened the gathering with six areas which is instrumental in entering into product manufacturing; Material availability, Technology Transfer from the ICGEB, production information, Cutting-edge scientific research in ICGEB laboratories, Services and Advice.

Dr Banks shared information of some on-going research in the areas of infectious diseases, non-communicable diseases, medical biotechnology, industrial biotechnology, plant biology and biotechnology being conducted at the ICGEB.

Dr Banks presented following statistics in regard to Biotechnology products.

  • Over 350 biotechnological drugs gained clinical approval
  • Over 400 such drugs entered clinical trials
  • Monoclonal antibody market expected to be worth not less than 75 billion USD
  • Global Invitro diagnostic market forecast to reach 75 billion by 2020
  • Biogeneric market expanding rapidly

Dr Lawrence Banks further revealed that the Biotechnology Development Group (BDG) at ICGEB deliver support to local pharmaceutical manufacturing companies in member countries to improve drug availability at a more affordable price, to develop simple innovative technologies for production of biosimilars. EPO, IFN alpha 2A/B, GCSF, IFN beta, Insulin are products developed in other member countries using technologies transferred by the ICGEB. Information on ICGEB developed technologies were also shared among participants.

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