A phase I pharmacokinetics trial comparing PF-05280586 (a potential biosimilar) and rituximab in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis

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Pharmacokinetic (PK) similarity was assessed among PF-05280586 (a proposed biosimilar) vs. rituximab sourced from the European Union (rituximab-EU) and the United States (rituximab-US). Pharmacodynamics (PD), overall safety and immunogenicity were also evaluated.


Patients with active rheumatoid arthritis on a background of methotrexate and inadequate response to one or more tumour necrosis factor antagonist therapies were randomized to intravenous PF-05280586, rituximab-EU or rituximab-US 1000 mg doses on study days 1 and 15.


A total of 220 patients were randomized to receive study treatment as assigned. Of these, 198 met per-protocol population criteria for inclusion in the PK data analysis. PF-05280586, rituximab-EU and rituximab-US exhibited similar PK profiles following administration of assigned study drug on days 1 and 15. The 90% confidence intervals of test-to-reference ratios for Cmax, AUCT, AUC0–∞ and AUC2-week were within the bioequivalence margin of 80.00–125.00% for comparisons of PF-05280586 with rituximab-EU, PF-05280586 with rituximab-US, and rituximab-EU with rituximab-US. All treatments resulted in a rapid and profound reduction in CD19+ B cells and sustained profound B cell suppression up to week 25. The incidence of antidrug antibody (ADA) response (n = 7, 10 and 9 for PF-05280586, rituximab-EU and rituximab-US, respectively), time to ADA emergence and ADA titres were similar across treatments. None of the ADA-positive samples was positive for neutralizing activity. No clinically meaningful differences in adverse events were identified.


The study demonstrated PK similarity among PF-05280586, rituximab-EU and rituximab-US. In addition, all treatments showed comparable CD19+ B cell depletion PD responses, as well as safety and immunogenicity profiles.

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