Application Note

Development of Pharmacokinetic (PK) Assays for Detecting Biosimilars Targeting TNF alpha using AlphaLISA


Anti-inflammatory monoclonal antibody drugs that specifically target TNFα, such as Humira®, have been highly successful in the market. As patents expire on these top-selling drugs, effort has been placed on developing biosimilars. Biosimilars differ from small molecule generic drugs in that their chemical structure does not have to be exactly the same as the patented drug. Therefore, the FDA has stringent requirements for proving that the biosimilars have the same efficacy and safety profile as the patented drug. Companies that develop biosimilars are tasked with proving that the biosimilar shows equivalent pharmacokinetics as the patented drug.

Proving “biosimilarity” involves comparing parameters such as overall exposure, absorption, half-life, and clearance time using patient samples. Sensitive, robust, and fast assays are needed to measure these parameters. Traditional methods for detecting and quantifying these drugs in patient samples include time-consuming, wash-based ELISA and MSD methods. In contrast, AlphaLISA allows for fast, no-wash, high-throughput detection and quantification of the drug of interest in a variety of sample matrices. Here, we demonstrate the application of AlphaLISA for detecting biosimilars targeting TNFα.