Biosimilars in oncology in Canada and the role of nurses

Sandeep Sehdev, Karyn Perry, Kathy Gesy


Canadian nurses are familiar with biosimilars in general, but may have knowledge gaps in their specific understanding, resulting in a significant unmet need for education. To assist Canadian nurses in gaining a greater understanding of biosimilars within the oncology treatment landscape and to alleviate certain concerns regarding biosimilar agents, the objectives of this Supplement are to discuss:

  • biologic drugs in general with an overview of their production
  • biosimilarity and biosimilars relative to reference biologic drugs
  • mechanisms of action: biosimilars versus reference biologic drugs
  • steps to biosimilar development 
  • extrapolation of indications for biosimilars—“totality of evidence” for biosimilars
  • interchangeability and substitution
  • Health Canada’s approval process for biosimilars
  • the role of nurses in introducing biosimilars and monitoring patients

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