Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that, through 2018, generic erosion of key statins such as Pfizer's Lipitor/Tahor/Sortis/Cardyl (atorvastatin) and AstraZeneca's Crestor (rosuvastatin) will reduce the dyslipidemia drug market by $4 billion in the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and Japan.

The new Pharmacor report entitled Dyslipidemia finds that sales of Lipitor/Tahor/Sortis/Cardyl will decline following the market entry of generic atorvastatin in 2010, which will also steal patient share from Crestor and Merck/Schering-Plough's Vytorin/Inegy. Similarly, beginning in 2016 in the U.S., the market entry of generic rosuvastatin will further constrain sales of Crestor, Vytorin/Inegy and other branded agents.

Additionally, in European markets, regulators continue their efforts to cut costs by promoting the prescription of generics by providing financial incentives for their use and regulating patient copayment systems. Similar cost-saving measures are expected in Japan, while in the U.S., managed care organizations will strongly incentivize the use of generic atorvastatin and generic rosuvastatin before approving prescription of novel fixed-dose combinations. Although generic erosion will constrain the market, the report finds that opportunity exists in the development of agents that modify lipid parameters for the growing number of patients with mixed dyslipidemia. (Mixed dyslipidemia is characterized by elevated LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels combined with decreased levels of HDL cholesterol.)

"We forecast that approximately six percent of patients who are currently prescribed individually-formulated statins will be prescribed fixed-dose combinations containing a statin by 2018," said Decision Resources Analyst Alana Lessi. "The launch of several new fixed-dose combinations over the next few years will increase competition for patient share within this class and, as a result, new fixed-dose combinations will compete with potent statins."

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