Biopharmaceuticals & Biologics

in Dictionary Online

Biopharmaceuticals are defined as substances produced in living systems by biotechnology and used for therapeutic purposes or in vivo diagnostics. Because of the way they are made, these agents are often called biotech drugs and include therapeutic peptides and proteins, antibodies, oligonucleotides and nucleic acid derivatives, and DNA preparations.


Biopharmaceuticals are part of a broader category of therapeutic agents called biologics (or biologicals), defined as any therapeutic agent manufactured in living systems such as microorganisms, or plant and animal cells. Biologics not only include biopharmaceuticals, but also blood and blood components, vaccines, and other biomolecules extracted directly from natural (nonengineered) sources.

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