Biologic therapies (“biologics”) are more advanced than other therapies, and are used to treat many conditions. Doctors prescribe them to patients with autoimmune disorders like Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and even cancer. Using biologics to treat lung disorders like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma is a newer way to use this type of treatment.
Most non-biologic drugs are made in a laboratory and are relatively simple. Biologics are more complicated. Biologics have complex chemical structures that can’t be produced with normal lab equipment. Instead, biologics are produced using live bacteria. They can also be made with cells that scientists have “programmed” to produce specific substances.
The first biologic was insulin. Others include:
- Blood and blood components
- Allergy therapy
- Gene therapy