Indian Pharma Firms Must Innovate in Face of Generic Drugs Slowdown

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Indian pharmaceuticals companies need to diversify their product range and focus on evolving as innovators as growth in generic market is expected to slow down over the next decade, a study by industry body Assocham said on Monday.

According to the Assocham study, revenues of innovative large global drug companies depend on the performance of their unique new discoveries which help them bag a patent.

“Hence, the research and development (R and D) productivity of such players is of critical importance and accordingly, they invest heavily in R and D,” it said.

While new drug formulations are said to be leading the growth, the study said drug development costs have escalated.

“The cost for developing a New Molecular Entity (NME) has more than doubled to $1.5 billion over the past 5 years. During the same period, the number of NMEs approved by the US FDA continued to hover around 15-20 with an occasional rise to over 20 as seen in 2004 and 2008,” it said.

Interestingly, the study revealed that none of the new drugs approved over the past 2-3 years have been blockbusters with sales over $1 billion or even greater than $750 million.

“This decline in sales is primarily due to the availability of substitutes (generic as well as patented) for existing diseases. Rising emphasis on usage of generics has also steadily reduced the prescription of patented molecules,” it said.

Source: Zee News (link opens in a new window)

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