Last Updated 14 December 2015
The large therapeutic market for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a disease that is closely associated with smoking, continues to expand. The prevalence of COPD increases as populations age, and this increase is coupled with a rising diagnosis rate as efforts to promote awareness of the disease continue and the use of spirometry to diagnose COPD becomes more widespread. The expanding COPD patient population has great unmet need because truly disease-modifying therapies are lacking. Currently, treatment is dominated by bronchodilators that help alleviate symptoms but do not reverse the progression of the disease. Polypharmacy is common, and therapies that offer incremental improvements over existing treatment will gain use because they alleviate some of the burden associated with complex regimens. Major-market COPD sales will grow steadily over our forecast period owing to the uptake of once-daily, fixed-dose combinations and the increasing drug-treated population.

Questions Answered in This Report:

  • Aging populations and increasing diagnosis rates will lead to an expanding drug-treated population through 2024. What are the emerging opportunities in the expanding COPD drug-treated population? How can marketers attract new COPD patients entering the market?

  • The COPD market has begun to adjust to the launch of the newest drug class, the fixed-dose combinations of LABAs and LAMAs, in the major markets under study. Will physicians consider twice-daily agents in this class? How will the LABA/LAMA combinations be impacted by the launch of triple LABA/LAMA/ICS combinations? To what degree will sales of fixed-dose combinations cannibalize sales of their individual components?

  • Thought leaders we interviewed remain skeptical of the role of ICSs in the treatment of COPD and continue to discuss the role of eosinophils in this patient population. How will the LABA/ICS combination therapies fare in this environment, and how will the launch of alternative FDCs affect the market? What patient share will anti-IL-5 therapies be able to capture? 

  • Generic versions of market leaders tiotropium (Boehringer Ingelheim’s Spiriva) and salmeterol/fluticasone propionate (GlaxoSmithKline’s Advair/Seretide/Adoair) have launched or are expected to launch in the United States and European markets within the study period, but pulmonologists have historically had difficulty accepting generic substitutions due to concerns about the device. What role will device play in the choice of therapy? How will the availability of newer generics affect sales?


Markets covered: United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, Japan.

Primary research: 37 country-specific interviews with thought-leading pulmonologists.

Epidemiology: Prevalence of COPD; subpopulations by GOLD class (I, II, III, and IV); growth potential of the COPD population over the 2014-2024 study period.

Emerging therapies: Phase II: 11 drugs; Phase III: 6 drugs; preregistration: 1 drug. Coverage of 7 select preclinical and Phase I products.

Author(s): Kristine Mackin, Ph.D.
Michael Hughes, M.Sc., Ph.D.

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