Worldwide growth in the elderly population, increasing diagnosis rates, expensive novel therapies, and a growing trend toward more-aggressive treatment will drive considerable gains in drug sales revenue in the rheumatoid arthritis (RA) market. Rheumatoid Arthritis is a new study published by Decision Resources, Inc., that identifies and evaluates emerging therapies poised to benefit from these changing market conditions over a 2000-2010 study period.

  (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000303/DECISION )    Anticytokine Agents Will Prosper Despite Economic Challenges 

The introduction of the TNF inhibitors etanercept (Immunex/American Home Product's Enbrel) and infliximab (Centocor/Schering-Plough's Remicade) have revolutionized RA treatment. The continued success of anticytokine therapies will be the single most important driver of growth in the RA marketplace over the study period, thanks to the continued acceptance of existing biologics and a steady influx of new agents. While anticytokines may be increasingly used in the treatment of early RA, economic pressures will continue to restrict their prescription. Cost considerations have been a significant limiting factor in the market expansion of etanercept and infliximab in the United States and Europe. U.S. insurers cover these drugs only for patients with active RA who are refractory to disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs). Similar measures have been taken by the health authorities in the five major European markets. However, as long-term data accumulate establishing the efficacy and long-term safety of the TNF inhibitors, their use will likely be extended to patients with early active disease.

Competition Stiffens Within the COX-2 Class

The increasing number of novel COX-2 inhibitors will create more competition within this class. Three main competitors are expected to enter the RA market during the forecast period: Merck's etoricoxib, Pharmacia's valdecoxib, and Novartis's COX-189. Though these agents may be more selective in targeting COX-2 than currently marketed COX-2 inhibitors, thought leaders interviewed remain unconvinced that these new agents promise significant therapeutic advances or significantly greater safety. Thus, market adaptation of new COX-2 inhibitors may largely depend on competitive pricing.

DMARDs Will Lose Market Share to Anticytokine Agents

The market for DMARD therapies will achieve comparatively modest growth during our forecast period. Sales of traditional DMARD therapies will suffer from increased competition from anticytokine agents.

Rheumatoid Arthritis offers invaluable strategic intelligence for companies competing in this market. This study is part of the Immune and Inflammatory Disorders portfolio, one of six Pharmacor services that evaluate the commercial potential of drugs in research and development.

Decision Resources, Inc., is a world leader in pharmaceutical research publications, advisory services, and consulting designed to help clients shape strategy, allocate resources, and master their chosen markets. Founded as a subsidiary of Arthur D. Little, Inc., the company has provided strategic information services for 30 years. Visit the Decision Resources Web site at http://www.dresources.com/.

   Contact: Frank Sama, 781.296.2553 (telephone), 781.296.2550 (fax), or    sama@dresources.com.    In Europe, contact Francoise Bidart, +32.2.351.4082 (telephone),    +32.2.351.2347 (fax), or fbidart@decisionresources.be.    In Japan, contact Makiko Yoshimoto, +81.3.5401.2615 (telephone),    +81.3.5401.2617 (fax), or makiko@bl.mmtr.or.jp.                    MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here              http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X85333438 

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SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

Contact: Frank Sama of Decision Resources, Inc., +1-781-296-2553,
sama@dresources.com

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