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The global multiple sclerosis drugs market size was valued at USD 25.00 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 40.66 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 7.1% during the forecast period.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is an immune-mediated disease of the central nervous system. It is characterized by demyelination, inflammation, and degenerative changes such as progressive brain and spinal cord atrophy, neuroaxonal loss, and others. According to the Multiple Sclerosis Trust, 2.5 million people in the world were estimated to have MS in 2017. In addition to this, the treatment cost of MS has become an economic burden in many countries. According to the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, the annual cost of treatment for multiple sclerosis in the U.S. is estimated to be USD 28,000.0 million. Hence, there is active government support for the treatment in the form of better healthcare spending, expert recommendations, and drug approvals.
Many pharmaceutical companies are conducting clinical studies for the development of innovative therapies for MS. For example, in December 2019, Adamas Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced results from the phase 3 clinical study on ADS-5102, an investigational amantadine agent for the treatment of MS patients. Furthermore, new product launches and significant R&D investment are expected to contribute to the expansion of the market for Multiple Sclerosis drugs.
Rising Concerns on Using DMT amidst COVID-19 Pandemic to Negatively Impact the MS Drugs Market
The COVID-19 pandemic has created havoc across the globe. It has disrupted the healthcare environment adversely. The pharmaceutical industry is experiencing a mixed impact of the crisis. Cardiology, anti-diabetes, and other drugs for chronic diseases are witnessing a hike in demand. On the other hand, sales of vaccines, respiratory, dermatology, oncology, and other drugs have declined. As most of the outpatient appointments are cancelled or rescheduled, the patient volume in hospitals has decreased drastically, negatively impacting the overall sales of pharmaceuticals.
The fast spread of the pandemic has also increased concerns surrounding the use of disease-modifying therapies (DMT) that are increasingly prescribed for MS and might increase the patient’s risk for coronavirus infection. Debates are going among healthcare stakeholders advising not to interrupt or cancel the medication schedules. Moreover, in the guidance provided by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the patients are advised not to stop their DMT medications without first consulting their MS providers.
However, sales of many key MS drugs such as Rebif, Copaxone, Betaseron, and Tecfidera are witnessing a downward curve. For instance, Ocrevus growth rate slowed down to 38% when compared to 57% in 2019, owing to patients delaying their hospital visits. Furthermore, there are emerging concerns for the use of Ocrevus amid the COVID-19 pandemic as its mechanism of action lowers the patient’s virus-fighting capabilities has led to many countries suggesting delaying the intake of the drug. This is expected to hamper the multiple sclerosis treatment market growth during the pandemic.
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Shift towards Monoclonal Antibodies for Treatment to Boost the Market
Monoclonal antibodies are now being increasingly employed for MS treatment. Various clinical trials are focused on developing novel drugs using monoclonal antibodies. Moreover, most of the immunosuppressive drugs used for treating this condition are humanized monoclonal antibodies, whose demand is surging worldwide. Ocrevus, which was launched in March 2017 by F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., became one of the blockbuster drugs generating revenue of USD 3.1 billion in 2019, further expanding this market of multiple sclerosis drugs.
In March 2019, TG Therapeutics, Inc. presented the results from its phase 2 clinical trials on ublituximab (TG-1101), an anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody being developed to treat multiple sclerosis. The increased market penetration, rapid adoption of immunosuppressive drugs, and advancements in the production of specific targeting monoclonal antibodies has resulted in increased use of monoclonal antibodies. This is poised to surge the market during the forecast period.
Significant R&D Investment to Boost the Market
The market is witnessing huge attraction in terms of clinical research and R&D investment. Many pharmaceutical companies are focusing on developing novel therapies for treating MS. For instance, Pipeline Therapeutics is conducting clinical trials on PIPE-307, which is a selective M1 receptor antagonist for MS. Increased research activities have also paved the way for many research collaborations between pharmaceutical companies and research institutes, further favoring the market. Increased research on various novel candidates has resulted in strengthening the pipeline portfolio of leading as well as small-scale pharmaceutical companies. The expected launch of these pipeline candidates is likely to drive the multiple sclerosis treatment market growth.
Proactive Government Support and Recommendations to Fuel the Market
The global burden of MS is increasing at an alarming rate and is becoming an issue of concern for both healthcare providers and governments. The rising prevalence of the disease has forced governments of many countries to take proactive measures through guidelines and recommendations. Apart from this, various awareness initiatives are being launched by government associations to educate patients regarding different treatment options available. For example, the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) has designed numerous guidelines for starting, switching, and stopping the disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) for adults with MS.
Government of various countries such as U.S., U.K., and others has also laid recommendations on the use of various drugs available for multiple sclerosis. In June 2018, for instance, the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) released recommendations for the use of beta interferons such as Avonex, Betaferon, Extavia, Rebif, and glatiramer acetate (Copaxone). Such recommendations and treatment guidelines make patients more educated about the various treatment options, which bodes well for the multiple sclerosis drugs market growth.
High Cost of Drugs to Hamper Demand for MS Treatment
Despite increased government interventions and various treatment options, the cost of drugs for multiple sclerosis remains a major challenge for the growth of the market. The high pricing of the drugs makes it inefficient in addressing the unmet needs of affected populations. Moreover, it also adds to the economic burden globally due to increased out-of-pocket expenses.
DMTs are considered to be a highly effective treatment option. However, a significant rise in the out-of-pocket costs for DMT is leading to lower adherence and improper disease management. According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the price of MS medications is rising gradually. From 2013 to 2018, the median price increased by more than US$ 20,000. Furthermore, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 modified the Medicare rules, increasing the discount offered on the branded-drugs by the manufacturers. This resulted in increasing out-of-pocket expenses of the patients who use certain generic drugs such as glatiramer acetate. This steady increase in the costs associated with MS treatment is anticipated to hamper the market growth of multiple sclerosis drugs.
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New Product Launches to Accelerate the Growth of Immunomodulators Segment
On the basis of drug class, the market is segmented into immunomodulators, immunosuppressants, interferons, and others. The immunomodulators segment dominated the MS drugs market share in 2019 and is estimated to lead the market throughout the forecast period. More treatment options within immunomodulators, new product launches, and higher demand are the factors responsible for its growth. Furthermore, the FDA approval of Mayzent in March 2019 is likely to propel the growth of the immunomodulators segment.
On the other hand, increased sales of popular drugs such as Ocrevus are anticipated to drive the immunosuppressants segment. Ocrevus accounted for 21% of the total patient share in the U.S. as many new and existing patients are adopting Ocrevus, which is the prominent factor for the expansion of the immunosuppressants segment. The interferons and others segment are poised to surge owing to increased research and strong government support.
Launch of Zeposia to Favor the Oral Segment
Based on the route of administration, the market of multiple sclerosis drugs is bifurcated into oral and injection. The injection segment is further segmented into intramuscular, subcutaneous, and intravenous. This segment accounted for maximum market share in 2019, owing to the rising prevalence of multiple sclerosis and active government recommendations. Furthermore, intensified research on humanized monoclonal antibodies is likely to augment the growth of the injection segment.
Launch of new products and shift towards oral drugs are the key factors contributing to the expansion of the oral segment. In January 2020, Bristol Myers Squibb announced the launch of Zeposia, which is now the lowest priced oral drug available for multiple sclerosis in the market. According to the company estimates, the drug has the potential to reach peak sales of USD 5.0 billion in the coming years. This is likely to give significant momentum to the oral segment during the forecast period.
Hospital Pharmacy to Dominate the Market
In terms of distribution channel, the market of multiple sclerosis drugs is segmented into hospital pharmacy, retail pharmacy, and online pharmacy. The hospital pharmacy segment is anticipated to dominate the market throughout the forecast period owing to favorable health reimbursement and increased government efforts to strengthen the government hospital pharmacies.
Growth of the retail pharmacy segment is likely to get propelled owing to the increasing number of retail channels for prescription drugs. The online pharmacy segment is poised to surge owing to the rapid adoption of e-pharmacy during COVID-19 pandemic and easy availability of the drugs.
North America Multiple Sclerosis Drugs Market Size, 2019 (USD Billion)
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The market size in North America stood at USD 14.74 billion in 2019. Primary factors responsible for the region’s dominant hold on the multiple sclerosis drugs market share include increasing R&D investment, new product launches, and rising demand for immunosuppressants. In addition, initiatives to generate awareness regarding the treatment and diagnosis of MS are actively undertaken by governments in the region. In the U.S., the month of March is recognized as Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month, which is supported by government associations such as the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America through educational activities. This is anticipated to fuel the MS treatment market in North America.
Europe is estimated to be the second most prominent region in terms of revenue by 2027, owing to the active government recommendations and favorable health reimbursement policies.
Asia Pacific is likely to register the highest CAGR during the forecast period, attributable to the improved distribution networks of pharmaceutical companies in emerging economies. Also, the collaboration of Biogen and Eisai Co., Ltd. in January 2018 to co-promote Tecfidera, Tysabri, and Avonex in Japan is further expected to reach and accelerate the multiple sclerosis treatment market growth in Asia Pacific.
In the Middle East & Africa and Latin America, the market is projected to expand owing to rising prevalence of neurological diseases and improving healthcare spending.
High Sales of Tecfidera and Gilenya to Render Leading Position to Biogen and Novartis AG
In terms of revenue, Biogen has emerged as a leading player on account of the surging sales of Tecfidera in 2019 and strategic partnerships for increased distribution of drugs. Novartis AG is ranked second in the market due to the high demand for Gilenya. It is also expected to benefit by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence’s (NICE) decision in 2018 to recommend Extavia among other beta interferon drugs Avonex, Betaferon and Rebif for the treatment of relapsing-remitting or secondary progressive MS. However, Roche’s Ocrevus is giving close competition to Gilenya in terms of revenue. This, coupled with U.S. patent expiry of Tecfidera in 2020, is expected to strengthen the market position of Roche.
The multiple sclerosis drugs market report provides a detailed analysis of the market studies and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, product/service types, and leading applications of the product. Besides, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over recent years. The report provides various key insights such as prevalence of MS, regulatory and reimbursement overview, pipeline analysis, patent snapshot, new product launches, and key industry developments such as mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships.
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Value (USD billion)
By Drug Class
By Route of Administration
By Distribution Channel
The value of the global multiple sclerosis drugs market was USD 25.00 billion in 2019.
Fortune Business Insights says that the market is projected to reach USD 40.66 billion by 2027.
The value of the market in North America was USD 14.74 billion in 2019.
The market is projected to rise at a CAGR of 7.1% during the forecast period (2020-2027).
Immunomodulators is the leading segment in this market.
Significant R&D investment and proactive government support and recommendations are the key factors driving the market.
Biogen and Novartis AG are the top players in the market.
North America is expected to hold the highest market share.
Shift towards monoclonal antibodies for MS treatment is the key trend in the market.
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