Entry of Generic Versions of Blockbuster Pulmonary Drugs to Hamper Growth Prospects

With the growing population reeling under the high incidence of chronic respiratory diseases, the global pulmonary drugs market is likely to find immense growth opportunities in the forthcoming years. As per the forum of international respiratory societies (FIRS), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) affects nearly 200 million lives globally and has thus become the fourth leading cause of death. 

However, the large-scale availability of counterfeit drugs and the presence of stringent regulations are jeopardizing the very existence of the market. According to a report by Transparency Market Research (TMR), the global pulmonary drugs market is expected to decline at a CAGR of 6.3% between 2016 and 2024, reaching a valuation of US$28.08 bn by 2024 from US$48.03 bn in 2015. TMR’s lead analyst states that, despite the negative growth rate, the launch of result-oriented medicines is estimated to bode well for the growth of the market in the near future.

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Which factors are expected to augur well for the growth of the global pulmonary drugs market?

The global pulmonary drugs market is primarily driven by the rising prevalence of chronic respiratory disorders. The increasing number of smokers worldwide have also boosted the sales of pulmonary drugs as they are often more susceptible to respiratory disorders. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), six million deaths around the globe every year are caused due to tobacco consumption. Therefore, the changing lifestyles are expected to play an instrumental role in the growth of the global market. Other factors such as rising disposable income, increasing investments made in research and development of effective and innovative drugs, and the rapidly growing population are likely to provide a fillip to the market. 

What are the key strategies adopted by prominent players to stay ahead in the global pulmonary drugs market?

The leading players in the market are focusing on building their pipelines and launching result-oriented and advanced drugs in order to meet unmet demands of patients worldwide. Actelion Pharmaceuticals Inc., Astra Zeneca, Bayer AG, GlaxoSmithKline Plc., F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., Novartis AG, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., and Merck & Co. Inc. are some of the leading companies in the market. Collaboration is another go-to strategy for these companies to stay relevant in this highly competitive landscape. To put this in perspective, Vectura Group plc. along with Novartis AG has developed an inhaler, Ultibro, whose launch in the U.S. is expected to happen by early 2017. 

TMR observes that the leading manufacturers are estimated to lose their shares in the overall market as patents for blockbuster drugs are expected to expire in the offing. Several large companies are likely to develop generic versions of blockbuster drugs as a part of their second-to-market strategy. For instance, Vectura is developing a generic version of GlaxoSmithKline's blockbuster drug Advair, which is poised to get approved by May 10, 2017. However, this trend of patent cliffs along with the development of generic drugs is anticipated to adversely affect the overall revenue of the global pulmonary drugs market.


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