Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that the emergence of four novel therapies -- Elan/Wyeth's bapineuzumab, Eli Lilly's LY-2062430, Myriad Genetics' Flurizan and Medivation's Dimebon -- will drive the Alzheimer's disease drug market to nearly triple by 2017.

The new Pharmacor report entitled Alzheimer's Disease finds that sales of Alzheimer's disease drugs will increase from $3 billion in 2007 to nearly $9 billion in 2017 in the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom and Japan. Because of their anticipated superior efficacy over small-molecule therapies, the two new biologic agents driving most of this growth will be bapineuzumab and LY-2062430. Although bapineuzumab and LY-2062430 may present greater safety risks than other emerging agents, the two drugs are estimated to collectively garner 71 percent of the Alzheimer's disease drug market in 2017, according to the report.

"We expect the monoclonal antibodies bapineuzumab and LY-2062430 to collectively garner $6 billion in sales by 2017," said Nitasha Manchanda, Ph.D., analyst at Decision Resources. "The emerging small-molecule agents Flurizan and Dimebon will also contribute to market growth, although to a lesser extent, accounting for $900 million in combined sales in 2017. However, if the monoclonal antibodies cannot establish superior efficacy over small-molecule agents in pivotal trials, Flurizan and Dimebon will have greater uptake."

The report also finds that sales of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, the agents that currently dominate the Alzheimer's disease market, will drop by nearly half between 2007 and 2017. In 2007, acetylcholinesterase inhibitors accounted for 70 percent of market share; in 2017, they will represent only 13 percent, due to generic erosion, competition from emerging agents and a dramatic increase in the overall size of the market.

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