Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) -- which experts estimate afflicts at least 10% of the world's population -- is the subject of a new Decision Resources study. As awareness of IBS increases and more patients seek medical attention, we believe that a substantial market opportunity will open for pharmaceutical companies that offer safe, efficacious, multisymptom agents.

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For the seven major pharmaceutical markets (United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, and Japan), we estimate that sales of IBS drugs totaled $426 million in 1999. We estimate that sales of IBS therapies will reach $748 million in 2004 and that they will nearly triple their 1999 level by the end of our forecast period, reaching almost $1.2 billion in 2009. In 1999, laxatives, antidiarrheals, antispasmodics, and antidepressants made up the entire IBS market; by 2009, however, these groups' combined share of IBS sales will shrink to only 39% because of the overwhelming presence of 5-HT modulators.

Several factors will help shift market dynamics and fuel growth between 1999 and 2009:

  * Four 5-HT modulators (tegaserod, cilansetron, renzapride, and E-3620)     will become available in various markets. The potential for these agents     to treat multiple symptoms (e.g., altered motility and pain) and     increase the percentage of diagnosed and drug-treated patients will     expand the IBS market significantly. We estimate that seven-market IBS     sales for this class will reach $683 million in 2009 and account for 59%     of the IBS market.   * Although sales will remain relatively stable for currently marketed drug     classes, their market shares will decrease considerably against the     backdrop of overall growth in the IBS market. For 2009, we estimate     seven-market IBS sales of $129 million for laxatives, $79 million for     antidiarrheals, $193 million for antispasmodics, and $44 million for     antidepressants.   * Antispasmodics will take the biggest hit to market share because 5-HT     modulators will replace them for pain therapy. Antispasmodics' share of     the IBS market will fall from 42% in 1999 to 17% in 2009.  

Irritable Bowel Syndrome offers invaluable market intelligence for pharmaceutical companies competing in the IBS market, and is a part of Mosaic, one of six Pharmacor services from Decision Resources that evaluate the commercial potential of drugs in research and development.

Decision Resources, Inc., is a world leader in research publications and advisory services 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, assessing international pharmaceutical and health care industry trends. Visit Decision Resources at http://www.dresources.com/.

Contact Frank Sama, 781.296.2553 (tel), 781.296.2550 (fax), or sama@dresources.com. In Europe, contact Francoise Bidart, +32.2.351.4082 (tel), +32.2.351.2347 (fax), or fbidart@decisionresources.be. In Japan, contact Makiko Yoshimoto, +81.3.5401.2615 (tel), +81.3.5401.2617 (fax), or makiko@bl.mmtr.or.jp.

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SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

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

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