The Korea Herald


Celltrion wins UNDP tender to supply anticancer treatments to Turkmenistan

By Shim Woo-hyun

Published : Nov. 1, 2023 - 17:22

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Celltrion's blood cancer biosimilar Truxima (Celltrion Healthcare) Celltrion's blood cancer biosimilar Truxima (Celltrion Healthcare)

Celltrion Healthcare, South Korean biosimilar giant Celltrion’s sales unit, announced Wednesday that the company has won the United Nations Development Program’s tender to supply anticancer drugs to Turkmenistan.

The UNDP is a UN agency dedicated to eradicating poverty and reducing inequalities through the sustainable development of nations in more than 170 countries and territories.

Celltrion Healthcare said the company joined the tender that opened in May this year, and that the result was announced last month.

According to Celltrion Healthcare, the company will supply its blood cancer biosimilar Truxima, and its metastatic colorectal and breast cancer treatment Vegzelma to Turkmenistan.

The company added that the supply of anticancer biosimilars is expected to begin by the end of this year.

The value of the tender, as well as the quantity of its anticancer treatments supply, have not been disclosed by the company.

“It is meaningful for us to supply our treatments to help patients in the country,” an official from Celltrion Healthcare said. “We believe that Truxima and Vegzelma will become the most effective, and economically viable treatment options, not only in developed countries but also in developing countries."

Celltrion Healthcare said that the company will participate more in international organizations’ tenders in the future.

Both Truxima and Vegzelma are widely prescribed anticancer treatments developed by Celltrion.

According to the world’s largest contract research organization IQVIA’s data, Truxima, the first biosimilar of Roche’s blockbuster cancer drug Rituxan, has secured 22 percent market share in the European market as of the second quarter this year. In the US, its market share stood at 30 percent in the third quarter, according to separate data from Symphony Health.

Vegzelma, an anti-cancer monoclonal antibody treatment biosimilar to Avastin, is increasing its presence in European countries after its launch in October 2022, Celltrion Healthcare said. The drug's market shares in Finland and Germany stood at 45 percent and 21 percent, respectively.