GlobalData Release: Breast Cancer Treatments Must Adapt for Elderly Patients

Published: Jul 10, 2012

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 10 July 2012 - A cure for breast cancer is yet to be discovered, though scientists continue the search, says new report by healthcare experts GlobalData.

The new report* shows that despite many pharmacological treatment options being available for breast cancer treatment, including chemotherapy, hormonal therapy and targeted therapy, patients still fear relapses or resistant tumors. Around 30% of patients diagnosed with stage I, II or III breast cancers develop recurrent advanced or metastatic breast cancer (MBC), although there has been a significant improvement in the treatment of MBC. Doctors aim to prolong survival, delay tumor progression, relieve disease symptoms and improve quality of life, but there still remains a need for improved prognosis in MBC.

An effective chemotherapy drug is also required for older breast cancer patients, as around half of breast cancer cases occur in women aged 65 and older, with over 30% occuring in those aged over 70. Many approved drugs have not been properly evaluated for this population, and clinicians are cautious about treating elderly patients, many of whom have comorbidities.

GlobalData’s analysis shows that the current competition in the breast cancer therapeutics market is strong, with several key therapies offering good efficacy and safety profiles. However, the standard offering of chemotherapy treatment attacks healthy cells as well as cancerous ones, often causing serious side effects such as hair loss, nausea and weakening of the immune system. This can therefore significantly compromise a patient’s quality of life, particularly in the case of elderly individuals.

Individualized therapy therefore remains the most significant unmet need in the treatment of breast cancer. Now, generic erosion caused by the patent expiry of major drugs such as Arimidex (anastrozole), Aromasin (exemestane) Femara (letrozole), Taxotere (docetaxel), Avastin (bevacizumab), Faslodex (fulvestrant), Ixempra (ixabepilone), Tykerb (lapatinib) and Herceptin (trastuzumab) during 2010-2020 is expected to offset market growth due to the launch of novel therapies during the same period. Moreover, following a decision by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on November 18, 2011, overall usage of Avastin in HER-2 negative metastatic breast cancer (MBC) will be reduced by 50%. The late phase pipeline contains 29 molecules, with some expected to have a big impact on the future breast cancer market. Promising late phase molecules such as Boehringer Ingelheim’s Tomtovok (afatinib), Novartis’ Afinitor (everolimus), Pfizer/Puma’s neratinib (HKI-272), Eli Lilly’s ramucirumab and Genentech/Roche /ImmunoGen’s trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1) all look promising, and suggest a shift from the use of untargeted, small molecule based chemotherapy regimens to regimens containing high price targeted and biological agents.

In 2011, the breast cancer therapeutics market in key countries (the US, the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, Brazil, Russia, India and China) was collectively worth $10 billion, following growth from 2000 at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 13.8%. Revenue is expected to increase marginally at a CAGR of 1.6% during the coming decade, to reach a value of $11.6 billion by 2020.

*Breast Cancer Therapeutics - Global Drug Forecasts and Treatment Analysis to 2020

This report provides comprehensive information on breast cancer therapeutics, highlighting treatment guidelines, and the key trends shaping and driving the global market. It analyses the treatment usage patterns in the global breast cancer therapeutics market, and also provides insights into the competitive landscape and the emerging players expected to significantly affect the existing market leaders. The report provides valuable insights into the pipeline products within the global breast cancer therapeutics sector, and quantifies the unmet need in the global market as well as in individual markets such as the US and the top five countries in Europe, highlighting the opportunity for future players.

This report is built using data and information sourced from proprietary databases, primary and secondary and in-house analysis by GlobalData’s team of industry experts.


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