Parkinson’s disease market set to hit US$3.2bn by 2021 as search for cure continues


Despite patent expiries, growth will occur with the help of new entrants offering easier methods of administration of continuous symptomatic relief

Although the Parkinson’s disease market is set to expand from US$2.1bn in 2014 to $3.2bn by 2021, at a moderate compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.7%, game-changing treatments will not be available for the foreseeable future, according to business intelligence provider GBI Research.

The company’s latest report states that Parkinson’s disease market growth will occur despite the patent expiries of several key products during the forecast period. These treatments include Azilect, Neupro and Stalevo.

Parnjeet Bains, Analyst for GBI Research, says: ‘New entrants are expected to offset the inevitable generic erosion caused by patent expiries, as drug developers focus their attention on offering easier methods of administration and continuous symptomatic relief. For example, four new levodopa formulations are expected to enter the market by 2021, each designed to improve off-episodes in advanced Parkinson’s disease patients by providing continuous drug administration.’

However, despite steady market growth, various unmet needs remain and a cure is yet to be found. As with Alzheimer’s disease, a viable therapeutic target to halt or slow disease progression is currently not in scope owing to the fact that underlying mechanisms that cause Parkinson’s disease are not fully understood.

Bains explains: ‘Most pipeline drug development programmes are in their early stages, with the majority in the preclinical stage. This means that game-changing products are far from being realised, and explains why symptom-relieving therapies will continue to dominate the market through to 2021.’

To combat the vast array of unmet needs in the Parkinson’s disease treatment space, developers are concentrating on disease modification as opposed to mere symptom relief.

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‘Despite the short-term forecast for Parkinson’s disease patients, the current pipeline is very active, consisting of 365 products and a diverse range of molecular targets. It includes a wide range of innovative approaches, including gene therapies and neuroprotective and neuroregenerative agents, suggesting that more effective drugs may be on the horizon,’ the analyst concludes.