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PLoS One. 2017 Jul 5;12(7):e0180325. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0180325. eCollection 2017.

Randomized clinical trial comparing efficacy and safety of brand versus generic alendronate (Bonmax®) for osteoporosis treatment.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.



Although the same efficacy and tolerability are anticipated due to both drugs containing the same active ingredients, comparative studies between brand and generic alendronate are limited. Accordingly, the objective of this study was to compare efficacy and safety between brand alendronate and a recently introduced generic alendronate drug.


A total of 140 postmenopausal women or men aged older than 50 years who met the indications for osteoporosis treatment were randomized to receive either generic (Bonmax®) or brand alendronate (Fosamax®) 70 mg/week over a 12-month period during the May 2014 to June 2015 study period. Endpoints included bone mineral density (BMD) changes at the lumbar spine, total hip, and femoral neck; percentage of patients with predefined levels of change in total hip and lumbar spine BMD at 12 months; and, changes in biochemical bone markers at 3, 6, and 12 months. Tolerability was evaluated by patient self-reporting of adverse experiences.


At 12 months post-treatment, BMD significantly increased at all sites in both groups. There were no differences in BMD percentage changes or the number of patients with stable or increased BMD after 1 year between groups. No significant differences in the amount of biochemical bone marker reduction or incidence of adverse events were observed between groups.


Generic and brand alendronate produced similar gains in BMD and reduction in bone turnover markers. Both medicadoitions were also equally well-tolerated. Based on these findings, generic alendronate (Bonmax®) is a viable alternative to the original brand of alendronate.


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