EXTON, Penn., Aug. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- BioTrends Research Group, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for specialized biopharmaceutical issues, finds that surveyed retinal specialists/general ophthalmologists now treat 26 percent of their intravitreal pharmaceutically treated wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) patients with Regeneron's Eylea, a significant increase from one year ago. Eylea has been on the market since November 2011. In fact, patient share for Eylea now surpasses that for Roche/Genentech's Lucentis (21 percent), which has been available since 2006. However, off-label use of Roche/Genentech's Avastin continues to dominate the wet AMD market, largely due to its low cost relative to the other anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) agents and proven efficacy.
According to the TreatmentTrends®: Dry/Wet AMD (US) report, physician preference for Eylea is likely driven by its convenient twice monthly dosing frequency, which is supported by the finding that wet AMD patients receive significantly fewer Eylea injections than Avastin or Lucentis injections during the first two years of treatment. Data from the report also suggest that Eylea is moving up in the wet AMD treatment algorithm and is now the most preferred branded therapy indicated for the treatment of wet AMD, with Lucentis being the typical third-line treatment option.
"This shift in Eylea use is likely motivated by prescribers' high satisfaction with the agent and their positive perceptions related to its efficacy," said BioTrends Research Group Senior Business Insights Analyst Emma Williams, Ph.D. "These perceptions will contribute to the continued growth of Eylea patient share over the next six months and will trail only Avastin's patient share."
Report findings also reveal that surveyed physicians rate geographic atrophy associated with dry AMD as the AMD disease type with the greatest need for new products, a finding which is not surprising given the high degree of vision loss suffered by these patients and the paucity of treatment options currently available for dry AMD. However, even as physicians acknowledge the high unmet need for dry AMD, few are aware of products in development for dry AMD, including Otsuka/Acucela's ACU-4429 and MacuCLEAR's MC-1101. Instead, awareness is higher for surveyed products in development for wet AMD, in particular Ophthotech's Fovista, Ohr Pharmaceuticals's squalamine and Allergan's anti-VEGF DARPin. Surveyed physicians perceive these products for wet AMD as having potential to provide the most value to the treatment of their AMD patients, largely due to Fovista's synergistic effect when administered with an anti-VEGF agent, squalamine's eye drop formulation and anti-VEGF DARPin's novel mechanism of action and duration of action.
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SOURCE BioTrends Research Group