Devices Deliver Growth

Several recent studies predict notable growth for specialized drug-delivery products, says Greystone Associates (Amherst, NH).

“Drug marketers now realize that the growing trend toward self-administration for chronic conditions such as multiple sclerosis and arthritis presents unique challenges for combination products,” says George Perros, Greystone Associates’ managing director. “Success in these markets is highly dependent on understanding patients’ needs and incorporating delivery technologies that are patient-friendly and can improve compliance.”

For instance, prefilled syringe demand is being driven by the ability of these devices to improve patient compliance, deliver high-priced biologicals efficiently, and promote patient and caregiver safety, reports Greystone.

Pen injectors, in particular, often employ disposable drug cartridges and memory displays, and these features factor in their success.

Microneedles, made possible by advances in nanotechnology and micromachining, can help deliver drugs with “minimal discomfort,” says Perros. These products will compete with both injection technologies as well as with transdermal patches because the microneedles mechanically perforate the outer skin and promote transdermal absorption of the active compound.

Perros adds that the pediatric drug market will be one of the fastest growing in the next 10 years. “To meet the challenge of pediatric therapeutics, unique formulations and improved delivery methods will be essential,” he says.

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