Research: Global epilepsy therapeutics market to reach $4.5B by 2019

NEW YORK — The epilepsy therapeutics market value in the eight major countries — the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and Japan — will increase from $3.4 billion in 2012 to $4.5 billion by 2019, at a compound annual growth rate of 3.9%, according to a new report from business intelligence provider GBI Research.

According to the report, the United States will grow at a higher CAGR of 4.8%, climbing from $1.9 billion in 2012 to $2.6 billion by 2019. Meanwhile, the five European countries and Canada will achieve a combined, smaller CAGR of 3.1% during the forecast period.

GBI Research attributes the anticipated market expansion to new anti-epileptic drugs that have been approved during the last five years. However, further growth will be limited by the recent patent expiration of key AEDs, such as Keppra (levetiracetam) and Lamictal (lamotrigine).

“The epilepsy treatment arena has historically been dominated by Gamma Aminobutyric Acid modulators and ion channel blockers, although a sizeable proportion of patients don’t respond to these existing treatment options,” said Vijaya Vulapalli, senior analyst for GBI Research.

“Second-generation AEDs, including levetiracetam, zonisamide and Vimpat (lacosamide), have signalled a shift in this trend in the last decade, with improved tolerability and safety through the use of new mechanisms of action. Recent approvals of Fycompa (perampanel) and Trobalt (retigabine) have continued this innovation by focusing on new molecular targets.”

With most of the molecules being approved in the last few years, the current epilepsy pipeline is weak, GBI Research said. Phase III trials account for 18% of the overall pipeline, but the majority of these late-stage molecules are reformulations or line extensions of existing drugs.

“Furthermore, the recent epilepsy pipeline does not boast drugs with novel mechanisms of action, which are considered by most prescribers as an urgent need in epilepsy therapeutics today,” Vulapalli added.

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