High-Tech Medicines, Built to Mirror Originals, Can Have Dangerous Differences

Close is not good enough as lookalikes to expensive medicines can offer unsafe variations.


If a customer who wanted a coffee received an espresso instead, she might leave the restaurant with only a bad taste in her mouth. But if she were prescribed a biologic drug and received an untested, unknown follow-on, the results could be far worse.

Coffee and espresso aren't the same thing. Congress must recognize that neither are biologics and their follow-ons.

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Corrected on : Bryan A. Liang is executive director of the Institute of Health Law Studies, California Western School of Law, and codirector of the San Diego Center for Patient Safety, University of California-San Diego School of Medicine.