Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms focusing on pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that there is a trend towards delayed use of biologic agents in the treatment of psoriasis. According to the new report entitled Treatment Algorithms in Psoriasis, Amgen/Wyeth/Takeda's Enbrel's second-line patient share decreased 51 percent from 2005 to 2007. Methotrexate (DAVA's Rheumatrex and generics) replaces Enbrel as the patient-share leader among second-line systemic therapies. While physicians favor Enbrel's better efficacy and safety over methotrexate, methotrexate is more affordable and often required by managed care organizations prior to initiating Enbrel. In addition, physicians frequently prescribe topical agents prior to systemic treatment even in moderate-to-severe psoriasis patients. Surveyed dermatologists are turning to Leo Pharma/Warner Chilcott's new topical therapy Taclonex, delaying the use of biologics until later lines of therapy.

The report also finds that competition is fierce between the biologics Enbrel, Abbott/Eisai's Humira and Genentech's Raptiva for the highly profitable position behind topical therapies and conventional agents, with only Enbrel managing to significantly break into later-line treatment. Humira is best positioned to draw share from Enbrel in an increasingly competitive market for the treatment of psoriasis. The majority of surveyed dermatologists and primary care physicians predict that they will prescribe Humira following its approval for psoriasis -- 93 percent and 83 percent, respectively. Interviews with physicians suggest that the main factors driving Humira's uptake are its efficacy in clinical trials and favorable side effect and safety profile.

"Humira will begin to draw market share as soon as it receives approval," said Nicole Westphal, Ph.D. analyst at Decision Resources. "Dermatologists predict they will use the leading systemic agents, including Enbrel and methotrexate, less overall in their practice while primary care physicians indicate that Humira will replace topical therapies."

About Treatment Algorithm Insight Series

Decision Resources combines in-depth primary research with the most extensive claims-based longitudinal patient-level data from PharMetrics® to provide exceptional insight into physicians' prescribing trends and the factors that drive therapy product choice, from diagnosis through multiple courses of treatment, for a specific disease.

For each disease examined, Decision Resources' Treatment Algorithms Insight Series provides:

  -- Summary of U.S. medical practice based on interviews with leading      experts in the field   -- Qualitative diagnosis/referral/treatment algorithm for the United      States   -- Drug usage by lines of therapy (1st, 2nd, 3rd line)   -- Discussion of key freeform combinations by lines of therapy   -- Product share (class and specific compound level) within each line of      therapy (1st, 2nd, 3rd line)   -- Progression of therapy from key 1st line products   -- Pathway to key therapies from previous therapies   -- Qualitative analysis of 2-year forecast incorporating upcoming      launches, changes in reimbursement, etc.    About Decision Resources 

Decision Resources ( is a world leader in healthcare market research publications, advisory services, and consulting designed to help clients shape strategy, allocate resources, and master their chosen markets.

  For more information, contact:   Elizabeth Marshall   Decision Resources, Inc.   781-296-2563    All company, brand, or product names contained in this document may be      trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders. 

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SOURCE: Decision Resources

CONTACT: Elizabeth Marshall of Decision Resources, Inc.,

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