Despite concerns around declines in R&D, the analysis identifies a surge in global sales with 2014’s $1 trillion milestone and forecasts sales to reach $1.3 trillion by 2018, according to the Intellectual Property and Science business of Thomson Reuters. Reuters’ 2015 CMR Pharmaceutical R&D Factbook also revealed a positive shift in new molecular entities (NMEs), with 46 launches in 2014—the highest in more than a decade.
The study underscores a promising industry outlook with increases in sales and NME launches and with shifting trends in R&D pipeline volume and therapeutic areas.
Diversification has increased NME launches. One-third of 2014 launches were for rare indications, mainly within anti-cancer. More than 65% were specialty drugs for the treatment of anti-cancer, hepatitis C virus and HIV.
Anti-cancer development continues to attract the highest amount of investments across all therapeutic areas, with the majority of recent launches receiving orphan drug status from regulatory authorities.
Phase III pipeline volumes are steadily growing due to the improved ability to “fail fast and cheaply,” increasing the speed of potentially successful compounds through development.
Since 2003, the CMR Pharmaceutical R&D Factbook has been built in collaboration with global pharmaceutical companies to assess productivity and to provide insights to strengthen planning and the effectiveness of R&D. It is based on proprietary, primary sources, competitive intelligence and public sources covering key trends across the landscape, including R&D pipeline volume, success rates, cycle times, regional comparisons, therapeutic areas and generics.