Is the decade long flirtation with vaccines over?

Un-edited statements from the health sector and beyond

Wednesday 24 November 2010, 4:32pm

Media release from Datamonitor

In light of increasing competition, saturation of key vaccine sectors and a lack of innovative late-stage vaccine candidates, maintaining the strong growth of the last decade will be a major challenge for the vaccines industry suggests independent market analyst, Datamonitor.

The market is dominated by five large players, Merck & Co, Sanofi Pasteur, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer and Novartis. Global vaccine sales reported by these five companies grew from $7.1 billion in 2004 to over $20 billion in 2009 at a CAGR of 23%.

Hedwig Kresse, lead healthcare analyst at Datamonitor, comments: “Vaccines were previously regarded as a commercially unattractive commodity market, however, a combination of factors has led to their re-emergence as successful growth drivers for Big Pharma over the last decade.”

The launch and rapid uptake of novel, high-price products, such as Pfizer/Wyeth’s Prevnar (7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine) or Merck & Co’s Gardasil (quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccine), as well as the availability of novel vaccine technologies, significant amounts of funding, changes in vaccine injury compensation legislation and most recently the influenza A(H1N1) pandemic have created a renewed interest from pharmaceutical and biotech companies in the vaccines space.

However, as key growth drivers such as Prevnar or Gardasil reach maturity, the rapid growth that followed their launch is showing signs of stagnation.

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Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.