Search in the Abstract Database

Search Abstracts 2016

* = Presenting author

P312 Has IBD specialists’ awareness of biosimilar monoclonal antibodies changed? Results from a survey amongst ECCO members

S. Danese*1, 2, G. Fiorino1, P. Michetti3

1Humanitas Research Hospital, IBD Centre, Gastroenterology, Rozzano, Milan, Italy, 2Humanitas University, Biomedical Sciences, Rozzano, Milan, Italy, 3Clinique La Source-Beaulieu, Crohn and Colitis Centre, Lausanne, Switzerland


Before the introduction of infliximab biosimilars in Europe, an ECCO survey on the knowledge and confidence on their use showed that a minority of IBD specialists was aware and confident about the potential benefits and issues of biosimilars in IBD. We aimed to look at the evolution of IBD specialists’ thinking about biosimilars after 1 year since they were available in the European market.


A 13-question anonymous survey was posted in the ECCO website. Members voluntarily participated in response to ECCO office generic invitations to participate in their surveys. Information on gender, job position, country, and mAb experience also were collected.


Out of the 118 responders, 60% worked in a university hospital, 97% as consultants, of whom 60% have already prescribed biosimilars in the last year. Only 17% of responders have no access to biosimilars. Most responders regarded cost sparing (92.4%) as the main advantage of biosimilars, immunogenicity (69%) as their main concern, and estimated that post-marketing pharmacovigilance, well-designed RCT, and further study of risk profile were needed (30.5%, 27%, and 32.2% respectively, with a 30%–40% reduction since 2013.). Only 35% of physicians agreed that biosimilars should carry distinct International Nonproprietary Names, compared with 66% in 2013. About prescription, 89.8% disagreed with automatic replacement of the originator with a biosimilar by a pharmacist, although 12.7% would support such substitution for new prescriptions, and in all patients respectively. Most clinicians still believe that medical societies should promote information about biosimilars (75%), but there is less need for collaborating with health institutions to develop rules on the use of biosimilars (47%), promoting guidelines (26%), and creating multispecialty safety registries (52%). The originator and biosimilar mAb were considered interchangeable for 44.4% of responders, compared with 6% in 2013, and additional 27.4% of physicians would switch to a biosimilar after informing the patient. Only 32.2% were against the extrapolation across indications, and only 25% would not extrapolate data across IBD. Education about biosimilars was judged fair and adequate by 56% of physicians, and unneeded for 16% of them. Finally, only 19.5% felt little or not confidence in the use of biosimilar mAb, as compared with 63% in 2013.


IBD specialists are generally informed and well educated about biosimilars. Compared with reports from 2013, there are fewer concerns and more confidence about their use in clinical practice.