Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, a new Decision Resources study, evaluates the future market potential of one of the most common childhood psychiatric disorders. Although awareness of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has increased over the past decade, many physicians remain reluctant to diagnose the disorder because of the associated stigma and the fact that methylphenidate, the current mainstay of ADHD treatment, is a controlled substance with a negative connotation among the public and some physicians.

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The Decision Resources study finds that growing public awareness of ADHD and more refined strategies for treatment are fueling an interest in the development of new pharmacological agents. Several promising areas of development are under exploration, including new formulations of existing psychostimulants, novel classes, and agents normally used in other indications that are under investigation for ADHD.

Reformulations of Existing Drugs Promise to Produce a Surge in Compliance

In August 2000, Alza and McNeil Consumer Healthcare launched Concerta, a 12-hour formulation of methylphenidate, in the U.S. market; within five months, sales of Concerta exceeded $60 million. The drug's market share continues to grow. Concerta's key benefit is its extended duration, which negates the need for repeat dosing and improves overall compliance. Other new launches that quickly followed Concerta include Celltech Group's Metadate CD, an eight-hour methylphenidate formulation, and Shire Pharmaceuticals' Adderall XR, a 12-hour formulation of mixed amphetamine salts.

A Promising Nonstimulant Alternative

Atomoxetine, a highly selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor for which Eli Lilly recently filed a new drug application (NDA) in the United States, holds considerable promise in filling the need for a nonstimulant alternative for ADHD patients. Most experts believe that atomoxetine will be less effective for reducing ADHD symptoms than are psychostimulants but will be more effective than current nonstimulant therapies. Its clear advantage will be its status as a noncontrolled substance-a factor that will help propel it into the forefront of second-line therapies. For those patients who are unwilling or unable to take stimulants, atomoxetine will be used as a first- line therapy.

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder offers invaluable strategic intelligence for pharmaceutical companies competing in this market. This study is 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 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

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SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

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

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