Systematic Review: Non-medical Switching of Infliximab to CT-P13 in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Dig Dis Sci. 2020 Aug;65(8):2354-2372. doi: 10.1007/s10620-019-06036-0. Epub 2020 Jan 22.


Background and aims: Biosimilar approval, such as Inflectra™ (CT-P13) for treating ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD), has reduced direct drug costs. Though clinicians are comfortable with biosimilar use in treatment-naïve patients, there are concerns in some jurisdictions that there are insufficient data from well-controlled trials to support non-medical switching. A systematic review, along with a critical assessment of the study design, was conducted to assess the potential impact of switching stable CD/UC patients from infliximab to CT-P13.

Methods: A literature search using PubMed and abstracts/posters from 3 major gastroenterology conferences from 2014 to 2018 was completed. Two individual reviewers extracted data from each relevant report and compiled it into evidence tables to facilitate descriptive analyses. Key randomized trial and observational study designs were critically assessed to contextualize data relevance.

Results: A total of 49 reports (3 randomized controlled trials, 40 observational trials, and 1 case series) were included. Most studies revealed no efficacy, safety, or immunogenicity concerns with non-medical switch. Limitations of supporting data include a small number of randomized controlled trials; predominance of observational studies with varying outcome assessments and lack of appropriate controls; and scarcity of research on biosimilar switch long-term effects.

Conclusions: The majority of studies suggested non-medical switch is safe. However, clinicians and regulatory bodies should be aware of differences and limitations in study designs when making inferences about the risks and benefits of switching stable IBD patients to biosimilars.

Keywords: Biosimilar; CT-P13; Crohn’s disease; Inflammatory bowel disease; Infliximab; Ulcerative colitis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use*
  • Biosimilar Pharmaceuticals
  • Drug Substitution*
  • Gastrointestinal Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Infliximab / therapeutic use*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Biosimilar Pharmaceuticals
  • CT-P13
  • Gastrointestinal Agents
  • Infliximab