Non-insulin drugs face uphill battle as diabetes care changes*

Diabetes care is undergoing a paradigm shift in which insulin is being prescribed earlier, for more conditions, in order to delay the onset of full-blown disease, according to a study released today by Scientia Advisors.

In light of that trend, as more drugs go generic, companies offering newer, more expensive drugs will face resistance in markets most constrained by economics.
In the words of Harry Glorikian, Scientia's managing partner, “While there are exciting developments in the non-insulin oral drug categories, the makers of these newer medications would be wise to stay attuned to how to best position their products—especially when marketing in emerging economies, which are extremely sensitive to costs.”

In Glorikian's words: “ We expect that as more drugs go generic, incretin mimetics (which increase insulin secretion) and insulins will generate an increasing share of the revenues. Therapies with benefits beyond glucose management (such as delaying the onset of diabetes or treating co-morbid conditions) will be used earlier in treatment. For a variety of reasons, despite the growing availability of new types of drugs, various forms of insulin will remain the gold standard. “

The study outlines basic scientific facts about diabetes, diabetes markets in different parts of the world, and mechanisms of action for various diabetes medications. It predicts growth and revenue share for individual drugs and describes “players” and a changing treatment paradigm as affected by traditional, emerging and future drugs and technologies. The study also analyzes how alternative delivery methods (needle-free injection; intranasal, inhaled, dermal, buccal, rectal and new oral methods) will impact insulin usage.

The study, funded by Scientia itself, is based on extensive primary and secondary research and proprietary analytic methods. “Our studies allow us to provide strategic advice that is deeper, more defensible and more expansive than that offered elsewhere,” Glorikian said. “We are pleased to share our insights with clients and prospective clients and to discuss companies' strategic planning needs.”

The review will be available for download from Scientia's Web site at on Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2009.
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