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July 29, 2021, 8:13 a.m. EDT

Viatris gets FDA approval of first biosimilar version of Sanofi's insulin Lantus

Shares of Viatris Inc. (NAS:VTRS) gained 3.3% in premarket trading on Thursday, the day after the Food and Drug Administration approved the first biosimilar verson of insulin glargine from Viatris and Biocon Biologics Ltd. Biocon is a privately held biopharma company based in India. The newly approved treatment, Semglee, is a biosimilar and interchangeable version of Lantus, Sanofi's (NAS:SNY) once-blockbuster long-actin insulin. Semglee will be sold exclusively by the companies for 12 months before the FDA can approve another biosimilar version of Lantus. Biosimilar drugs are copies of complex biologic drugs; this is somewhat similar to how generic drugs compare to brand-name prescription medications, in that that biosimilars and generic drugs are less expensive than the brand-name alternatives. Viatris shares are down 24.0% so far this year, while the broader S&P 500 (S&P:SPX) is up 17.1%.

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