Oncology Central

Biosimilars: New hope for oncology sustainability

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As part of our spotlight on biosimilars in oncology we recently spoke with Kelley Mayden from the Wellmont Cancer Institute (VA, USA). In this exclusive opinion piece Kelley provides her perspective on the current status of biologics, the approval and regulatory processes and how biosimilars may bring new hope for therapeutic sustainability in oncology.

The current status of biologics

Biologics differ from traditional therapeutics in that they are genetically engineered, large molecules that are isolated from natural sources. They play an integral role in the treatment of numerous malignancies and contribute to improved patient outcomes and survival. As the population ages and life expectancy rises, there is increased interest in biologics and their impact on healthcare spending. The annual cost of some biologics can exceed $100,000 and biologics are currently the primary driver of increased drug expenditures in the United States (US) [1].

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AxisHSKelley Mayden graduated from Virginia Highlands Community College with an associate degree in nursing in 1986. Following that, she obtained a bachelor of science in nursing and a master of science in nursing from East Tennessee State University. Ms. Mayden, oncology/hematology nurse practitioner at Wellmont Cancer Institute has 30 years of nursing experience, 10 of those as an oncology nurse, and 16 as an oncology/hematology nurse practitioner. She maintains an active practice seeing a variety of patient types and runs the bone marrow center for her clinic. Her interests include breast cancer, multiple myeloma, symptom management, and complementary and alternative therapy. In addition to her clinical practice, Ms. Mayden enjoys teaching and is an adjunct professor of nursing at King University where she teaches advanced pathophysiology. Certifications include family nurse practitioner, advanced oncology certified nurse practitioner, chemotherapy & biotherapy administration, and integrative aromatherapy certification.
Ms. Mayden is a charter member of the Advanced Practitioner Society for Hematology and Oncology (APSHO) and is an active member of the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS). Affiliations include Phi Kappa Phi and Sigma Theta Tau. Ms. Mayden serves on the editorial board for the Journal of the Advanced Practitioner in Oncology. She has numerous peer-reviewed publications, has lectured at the national level, and consulted on an education project for the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO University).

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