But there’s a downside, Wahl says. Drug companies are investing in biologics and biosimilars because they think they can keep their patents for longer. Since biologics are made from living cells, it takes more work for drug companies to prove to the FDA these drugs are safe and effective. "Drug companies might invest in (new) biologics because they perceive that biosimilars will not be developed even after the patent expires, because competitors would have to make a relatively large investment to develop a biosimilar and get it approved by the FDA," Wahl says. And while biologics seem to treat some conditions, such as cancer and autoimmune disorders, better than small molecules can, Wahl isn’t convinced that biologics provide a clear advantage overall.