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Novartis generics unit Sandoz enters deal to sell insulin biosimilars

Sandoz, the generics unit of Switzerland's Novartis AG, entered a collaboration deal with China-based supplier Gan & Lee Pharmaceutical Ltd. to commercialize biosimilar versions of insulins.

The two companies will sell biosimilars — lower-cost copies of biologic medicines — of insulin medicines glargine, lispro and aspart, which are the top insulin medicines in terms of sales. The insulin therapies are used in patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Under the deal, Sandoz will be responsible for commercializing the therapies in the EU, U.S., Japan, South Korea, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Gan & Lee will shoulder manufacturing and development of the therapies, adhering to the manufacturing requirements for Sandoz biosimilars.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The deal allows Sandoz to enter the insulin business and expand its endocrinology portfolio in line with its strategy to expand its biosimilar business, the company said in a news release.