BURLINGTON, Mass., Nov. 4, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that the majority of surveyed primary care physicians (PCPs) and endocrinologists indicate that—if these therapies are approved for obesity—they will prescribe Orexigen Therapeutics/Takeda's Contrave (a fixed dose combination of naltrexone and bupropion), Arena Pharmaceuticals/Eisai's Lorqess (lorcaserin) and Vivus's Qnexa (a fixed dose combination of phentermine and topiramate).
The new U.S. Physician & Payer Forum report entitled Contrave, Lorqess, and Qnexa; How Will Physician and Payer Attitudes Shape the Market for These Emerging Obesity Therapies? finds that surveyed PCPs are less likely than endocrinologists to prescribe Contrave or Lorqess but over 75 percent of both physician groups intend to prescribe Qnexa if approved. Additionally, there is little difference between the likelihood of endocrinologists to prescribe any of these three novel therapies, as approximately three quarters indicate that they intend to prescribe each of these agents for obesity.
"The obesity drug market is at an unprecedented inflection point as Contrave, Lorqess and Qnexa are attempting to enter an underserved market that is characterized by a rapidly growing patient population and very high unmet need," said Decision Resources Analyst Matthew Scutcher, Ph.D. "Meanwhile, there have been several major market challenges in recent years including the failure of Sanofi-Aventis's Acomplia (rimonabant) to gain regulatory approval in the United States and the withdrawal of Abbott's Meridia. Additionally, GlaxoSmithKline's Alli—an over-the-counter formulation of orlistat (Roche's Xenical)—has failed to bring new life to the obesity market."
The report also finds that 13 percent of surveyed clinicians and 23 percent of surveyed managed care organization's (MCO) pharmacy directors are aware of agents other than Eli Lilly/Amylin's Byetta (exenatide), Novo Nordisk's Victoza (liraglutide) and Amylin's Symlin (pramlintide) as being prescribed off-label for the treatment of weight loss. Other off-label weight loss drugs identified by clinicians and MCO pharmacy directors include topiramate (Ortho-McNeil's Topamax, generics), bupropion (GlaxoSmithKline's Wellbutrin, generics) and metformin.
The report is based on a U.S. survey of 75 PCPs, 75 endocrinologists and 30 MCO pharmacy directors.
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