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Reports Assess Unmet Needs in Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases Drug Markets

Availability of generic metformin and sulfonylureas for diabetes will influence formulary coverage (December 17)

Decision Resources, a research and advisory firm for pharmaceutical and health care issues, is set to publish analyses of unmet needs and commercial opportunities for developers of drugs that treat cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.

Some of the key findings in these reports will include the following:

  • Surveyed U.S. and European primary care physicians agree that increased weight-loss efficacy is one of the attributes that most influences their decisions regarding prescribing in obesity. Clinical data and the opinions of interviewed thought leaders indicate that phentermine (Ionamin, UCB; generics), phentermine/topiramate (Qsymia, Vivus), bupropion/naltrexone (Contrave, Orexigen), liraglutide (Victoza, Novo Nordisk), and beloranib (Zafgen) have advantages on this attribute over sales-leading orlistat (Xenical, Roche; Alli, GlaxoSmithKline; generics).
  • Surveyed U.S. and European pulmonologists agree that improved long-term survival is one of the attributes that most influences their decisions regarding prescribing in pulmonary arterial hypertension. Clinical data and the opinions of interviewed thought leaders indicate that macitentan (Opsumit, Actelion) has advantages on this attribute over sales-leading bosentan (Tracleer, Actelion).
  • The availability of generic metformin and sulfonylureas for the treatment of type 2 diabetes will continue to have a substantial influence on physicians’ prescribing and payers’ formulary coverage. The struggles of managed care organizations (MCOs) to contain health care costs often lead them to encourage the use of generics in early lines of therapy. New classes of antidiabetic agents face considerable reimbursement hurdles, particularly if they are expensive. Emerging therapies that are reformulations of already-available molecules, with limited advantages beyond delivery, will likely face significant market-access hurdles and stiff MCO resistance to formulary inclusion if priced higher than their parent molecules.

Source: Decision Resources; December 17, 2013.

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