Lux Research: 4th generation biologics set to drive $120b market

Fourth-generation biologics, with improved delivery and pharmacokinetics, will continue to drive an overall biologics industry that is already worth over $120 billion, Boston-based Lux Research says in a new report titled “Of Biologics and Cells – Are Formulation and Delivery Technologies Keeping Up with the Progression?”

These biologics have the potential of enabling new players to enter the market with modifications of proven drugs, said Lux Research, a firm that specializes in providing strategic advice and intelligence for emerging technologies.

The biopharmaceutical industry is now creating fourth-generation biologics, the firm notes. Engineered for greater specificity and efficacy, these new molecules give rise to possibilities that even older biologics may be granted new patent life.

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“With advances in cloning and assay development, the therapeutics industry has managed to artificially engineer these molecules to address therapeutically important targets,” Yan Xiang Yang, the Lux Research analyst who was the lead author of the report, said in a statement. “They are also able to produce them in commercially viable quantities, such that a number of this class of therapeutic molecules has achieved blockbuster status. The possibility also exists for positive up-regulation of cellular activity by fifth-generation biomolecular drugs that may be used to activate stem cells or boost immune system functions for diseases such as cancer.”

According to Lux Research, the autoimmune/inflammatory category, followed by hematologic disorders, metabolic disorders, and cancer together account for over $100 billion in sales.

“The most lucrative indication is autoimmune diseases, with the top four drugs sharing over $25 billion in sales and the next seven adding another $14 billion,” Lux Research said.