Welcome to the Big Molecule Watch!

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Goodwin’s award-winning Big Molecule Watch is the best resource for daily updates and analyses of regulatory issues, litigation, legislation, and other news in the world of biologics, biosimilars and related technologies. The editors of this blog have collectively been watching and engaging with the world of biologics and biosimilars (“big molecules”) since before the inception of the biosimilar industry in the U.S.  With extensive experience representing clients at all stages of a biologic’s or biosimilar’s lifecycle, from research and development, to patents, to regulatory application and approval, and through litigation and appeals, we are excited to share our observations and insights as the industry and the law continues to develop in this exciting area.

This blog focuses on “big molecules” as opposed to “small molecules.” Small molecule drugs have low molecular weight, a simple and well-defined structure, and are chemically synthesized. In contrast, “big molecule” drugs have high molecular weight, complex structures, and are derived from living organisms. For example, aspirin is small molecule while a monoclonal antibody is a big molecule. For further reading on big molecules, consider FDA's resources on biologics.

UK Authorizes World-First Gene Therapy from Vertex and CRISPR Therapeutics for Blood Disorders

Earlier today, UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) granted conditional marketing authorization to Vertex Pharmaceuticals and CRISPR Therapeutics for their CRISPR/Cas9 gene therapy, CASGEVY (exagamglogene autotemcel), marking the world’s first regulatory approval for a CRISPR-based gene-edited therapy.  CASGEVY is the first medicine to be licensed that uses the…

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Regeneron Sues Celltrion For Proposed Biosimilar of Eylea in West Virginia District Court

Regeneron filed a Complaint on November 8 against Celltrion in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia, alleging infringement of thirty-eight patents under the BPCIA based on Celltrion’s submission of an aBLA for CT-P42, a proposed biosimilar of EYLEA (aflibercept), and Celltrion’s provision of Notice of…

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BYOOVIZ® (Ranibizumab-Nuna) Granted Interchangeable Status

Recently, Biogen and Samsung Bioepis’s ranibizumab biosimilar (BYOOVIZ) was granted interchangeable status by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.  BYOOVIZ was deemed interchangeable to Genentech’s LUCENTIS for the treatment of neovascular (wet) age-related macular degeneration, macular edema following retinal vein occlusion, and myopic choroidal neovascularization.  BYOOVIZ, the first FDA approved…

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Formycon Enjoined From Manufacturing FYB202 Biosimilar of STELARA in Germany

As previously reported, in February 2023, Formycon and Fresenius Kabi entered into a global license agreement to commercialize FYB202, a ustekinumab biosimilar of Janssen’s STELARA, in key global markets after successful regulatory approvals. The European Medicines Agency accepted Formycon’s Marketing Authorization Application for FYB202 on September 29, 2023. It was recently…

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Fresenius Kabi Launches TYENNE, The First Approved Tocilizumab Biosimilar In The European Union

On November 1, 2023, Fresenius Kabi announced the launch of its tocilizumab biosimilar TYENNE referencing ROACTEMRA (tocilizumab) in the European Union.  TYENNE is the first tocilizumab biosimilar available in Europe for the treatment of several inflammatory and immune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, giant cell arteritis, polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis, and…

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FDA Approves Amgen's WEZLANA As Biosimilar to and Interchangeable With Janssen's STELARA (ustekinumab) - Stelara Is One of the 10 Drugs Selected by CMS for Drug Price Negotiations Under the Inflation Reduction Act

On Tuesday, October 31, FDA approved Amgen’s WEZLANA (ustekinumab-auub) as biosimilar to and interchangeable with Janssen’s STELARA (ustekinumab).  WEZLANA is the first product to be approved as a biosimilar to STELARA.  As we covered previously, Janssen and Amgen settled their BPCIA litigation regarding Amgen’s ustekinumab biosimilar product in May 2023….

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FDA Approves LOQTORZI in All Lines of Treatment for Recurrent or Metastatic Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

On October 27, Coherus BioSciences, Inc. and Shanghai Junshi Biosciences Co., Ltd. announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved LOQTORZI (toripalimab-tpzi) in combination with cisplatin and gemcitabine for the first-line treatment of adults with metastatic or recurrent locally advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), and as monotherapy for the treatment…

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FDA to Review Vertex Pharmaceutical’s Application for CRISPR-based Gene Therapy Exa-cel

The Cellular, Tissue, and Gene Therapies Advisory Committee of the FDA is meeting tomorrow, Tuesday, October 31, 2023, to review a Biologics License Application by Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. for exagamglogene autotemcel (exa-cel).  Exa-cel is a cell-based gene therapy product composed of the patient’s own hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) edited…

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