Biological products include a wide range of products such as vaccines, blood and blood components, allergenics, somatic cells, gene therapy, tissues, and recombinant therapeutic proteins. Biologics can be composed of sugars, proteins, or nucleic acids or complex combinations of these substances, or may be living entities such as cells and tissues. Biologics are isolated from a variety of natural sources – human, animal, or microorganism – and may be produced by biotechnology methods and other cutting-edge technologies. Gene-based and cellular biologics, for example, often are at the forefront of biomedical research, and may be used to treat a variety of medical conditions for which no other treatments are available.
How do biological products differ from conventional drugs?
In contrast to most drugs that are chemically synthesized and their structure is known, most biologics are complex mixtures that are not easily identified or characterized. Biological products, including those manufactured by biotechnology, tend to be heat sensitive and susceptible to microbial contamination. Therefore, it is necessary to use aseptic principles from initial manufacturing steps, which is also in contrast to most conventional drugs. Find here discussion on Cell culture in Normoxia.
Biological products often represent the cutting-edge of biomedical research and, in time, may offer the most effective means to treat a variety of medical illnesses and conditions that presently have no other treatments available.
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Overview of Biologic Drug
According to the National Cancer Institute, a biologic drug is “a substance that is made from a living organism or its products and is used in the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of cancer and other diseases.
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Types of Biologic Drugs
Biologic drugs, also known as biologic agents or biological agents, may include antibodies, interleukins, and vaccines.
Antibodies are specialized immune proteins that fight against infection and its ill effects. An example would be monoclonal antibodies used to treat cancer, which are laboratory-produced molecules that can attach to certain defects in your cancer cells.
Interleukins are a group of cytokines that are expressed by white blood cells, or leukocytes. Interleukins are used to make biologic drugs to treat conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and M.S.
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Vaccines are biological compounds that help improve immunity to certain diseases. An example of a vaccine biological compound would be a flu shot.
Future of Biologic Drugs
Biologic drugs look promising for the future due to better long-term outcomes and fewer side effects. In 2009, biologic drugs are costly but increased demand should drive down their price in the future.
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