Diagnostics

Breast cancer drug report: Many will try but few will succeed in the next decade

Although nearly 250 companies are working in the breast cancer treatment space, growth in the market will be driven by the uptake of three new drugs over the next 10 years and will plateau by 2018, according to a new market analysis from Decision Resources. Those three drugs will be Genentech’s Perjeta, which was approved […]

Although nearly 250 companies are working in the breast cancer treatment space, growth in the market will be driven by the uptake of three new drugs over the next 10 years and will plateau by 2018, according to a new market analysis from Decision Resources.

Those three drugs will be Genentech’s Perjeta, which was approved to treat HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer in June; ImmunoGen/Genentech’s trastuzumab-DM1, which Decision Resources anticipates will be approved for later-line treatment of HER2-positive breast cancer in 2013; and Novartis’s Afinitor, U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved last month for certain HER2-negative breast cancers.

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Currently, Genentech’s Herceptin dominates the $8.6 billion market, but the likely approval of a biosimilar will erode sales over the next decade, the report says.

Because new drugs are expected to improve breast cancer outcomes, the number of women first presenting with advanced disease is expected to increase more quickly than the number of those presenting with recurrent disease.

That might be part of the reason we’re seeing so much activity lately in the area of breast cancer diagnostics. In the past year, we’ve written about several companies developing detection and diagnostic methods and devices, including RedPath Integrated Pathology using genomics, TeloVISION and IVDiagnostics using circulating tumor cells, GeneAssess using biomarkers, Ascendant Diagnostics using protein biomarkers and Real Time Tomography using tomographic imaging.

There’s also been quite a bit of activity in vaccines, with institutions including the Cleveland Clinic, San Antonio Military Medical Center and the University of Pennsylvania touting new developments alongside companies like Antigen Express and Galena Biopharma.