Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues finds that, through 2012, growth in the myelodysplastic syndromes drug market will be driven principally by the launch in Europe of Celgene's Vidaza and Revlimid. Launch of these agents, which together will capture 70 percent of the total market in 2012, will also drive an increase in the overall drug-treated population as access to these therapies will encourage treatment of the disorder. A niche indication for which very few effective therapies are available, myelodysplastic syndromes is a group of bone marrow disorders that typically affect adults.

The new Pharmacor report entitled Myelodysplastic Syndromes finds that the commercial success of Vidaza and Revlimid, as well as Eisai's Dacogen, has encouraged drug developers to research new agents for the treatment of the indication. According to the report, of the various drug classes under investigation for myelodysplastic syndromes, the most promising are histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors. The off-label use of HDAC inhibitors that include Merck's Zolinza will experience modest uptake in this niche market over the next decade in the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and Japan. Other agents that are prescribed off-label for the indication include Wyeth's Mylotarg and Genzyme's Clolar/Clofarex/Evoltra.

"The greatest unmet need in the treatment of myelodysplastic syndromes is for more-efficacious therapies to treat high-risk patients," said Decision Resources Analyst Andrew Merron, Ph.D. "Even though Vidaza will become the standard of care for treating high-risk patients, the only cure for myelodysplastic syndromes is allogeneic stem cell transplantation, which is associated with significant mortality. As a result, the unmet need in this indication creates a huge opportunity for the development of safer, more-efficacious treatments."

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