AbbVie braces for onslaught of Humira biosimilars in 2023, with Skyrizi and Rinvoq to fill void for now – Endpoints News

AbbVie braces for onslaught of Humira biosimilars in 2023, with Skyrizi and Rinvoq to fill void for now – Endpoints News

Unveiled Friday morning, AbbVie’s third-quarter results and earnings release show a company bracing for what could be big Humira losses with biosimilar rivals early next year, even as the rest of the immunology line beats initial expectations.

Starting in January, AbbVie and the world’s best-selling drug Humira (adalimumab) will finally see biosimilar competition in the US, with the entry of Amgen’s biosimilar in late January, followed by Samsung, Boehringer, Viatris and Sandoz launching their versions of adalimumab next June and July.

AbbVie has signaled that it expects roughly 45% erosion (+/-10%) of its Humira line in 2023, after seeing sales similarly plunge in the EU when biosimilars launched there four years ago. AbbVie management has also previously hinted that interchangeable biosimilars (a term Boehringer’s competitor has) will have some impact on prices as two interchangeable biosimilars were baked into AbbVie’s guidance.

What the expected final erosion figure for 2023 shakes out to will be revealed in Q4 earnings, executives said Friday.

Richard Gonzalez, chairman and CEO of AbbVie, said on the call that there are “two main components” that will play into the company’s forecast for Humira next year: How the incoming biosimilars will be priced, which he said they won’t know until the competitor’s launch , and brand name Humira’s coverage and position on formularies, and he said negotiations with plans and PBMs so far “have gone very well,” adding that they are “at about 80 percent of all covered lives” and he expects that will rise above 90%.

Coexistence with one or more biosimilars is likely to be the way forward for AbbVie’s $20 billion per year cash cow.

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AbbVie is also looking to offset these biosimilar losses in the US with the growing success of its other immunology drugs, Skyrizi and Rinvoq. Global net revenue from the immunology portfolio was $7.7 billion in the quarter, an increase of nearly 15%, with Skyrizi net revenue of $1.4 billion and Rinvoq net revenue of $695 million.

“We continue to see strong momentum from our key immunology assets, Skyrizi and Rinvoq, and this performance – combined with strength from other growth drivers in our diverse portfolio – has mitigated the impact of temporary economic headwinds on our aesthetic products to deliver another quarter of strong results,” Gonzalez added in a statement.

As for the potential to do business development deals, Gonzalez didn’t sound like there would be much in the short term, but he noted that AbbVie has operated with an approach of adding incremental parts and an early-stage pipeline. “We’re continuing on the same approach right now. We’ve paid off the debt very quickly, so if we chose to do something, we could do something.”

He added that he thinks the bulk of the Humira erosion will be in 2023, with some more in 2024, but AbbVie will return to “significant growth” in 2025 and through the end of the decade.

“We’re confident we can do that with our portfolio and late stage,” he said.

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