Refinements in Inhaled Drug Delivery

Press Release – Greystone

New Survey Finds Evolving Device Technologies Creating New Opportunities for Drug Developers according To Greystone Research Associates

Refinements in Inhaled Drug Delivery Enhancing Growth Prospects as Global Markets Emerge

New Survey Finds Evolving Device Technologies Creating New Opportunities for Drug Developers according To Greystone Research Associates

(Amherst, NH) – As the median age of the global population continues to increase, conditions and diseases such as menopause, osteoporosis and heart disease, which require long-term therapy, are expected to become significantly more prevalent. This is driving a growing emphasis on drug self-administration for chronic conditions and greater interest in noninvasive drug delivery technology. Because of the patient-friendly nature oral inhalers, inhaled drug delivery continues to attract the interest of drug developers and their technology partners.

In terms of drug delivery technologies for prescription drug therapeutics, oral inhalers are firmly entrenched in third place, behind oral dosage forms and injection. While advances in inhaler designs have increased their user-friendliness, surveys of patient use continue to indicate a high incidence of incorrect use. Issues include patients failing to actuate and inhale simultaneously when using a pressurized metered dose inhaler and improper positioning of the device prior to use. Issues surrounding spacer devices for MDIs include bulky design, the need for cleaning, and potential difficulties in handling for older patients who lack dexterity.

In terms of commercial importance, upper respiratory tract conditions currently dominate the market for inhaled drug therapeutics. Worldwide, in the so-called middle income countries, COPD and asthma are emerging as substantial public health problems. However, the prevalence of COPD is probably underestimated, since it is not usually diagnosed until it is clinically apparent and moderately advanced.

Systemic delivery continues to represent an area of significant opportunity. Products and product candidates in this category include inhaled drugs for the treatment of such diverse conditions as pulmonary arterial hypertension, neurological disorders, hereditary diseases and pain management. Several of these emerging drug products have the potential to make a significant impact in the therapeutic markets they target, effectively changing the way important illnesses and conditions are treated.

Inhalers that combine two drugs indicated for treating upper airway diseases in one inhaler are gaining interest due to the complementary therapeutic effects of certain classes of drugs when taken together. For example, long-acting b2-agonists and inhaled corticosteroids are two classes of drugs having very different modes of action and targeting different aspects of the disease process. Long-acting b2-agonists target smooth muscle dysfunction and inhaled corticosteroids target the underlying inflammation. They have been shown to interact at the molecular level, where their actions appear to be synergic.

For the next five years global annual revenue growth in inhaled drug therapeutics for upper respiratory conditions (asthma and COPD) will reach slightly less than four percent on an ex-manufacturer basis. Growth in inhaled therapies for upper respiratory diseases will be driven by combination inhalers and emerging therapeutics. Systemic drugs delivered via oral inhalation, will growth annually by slightly more than eight percent over the forecast period. In terms of device technology, dry powder inhalers will continue to outpace MDIs in terms of annual unit growth, while advanced technology nebulizers will continue to increase at the expense of earlier generation devices in niche URT markets.

Detailed analysis of inhaled drug products and pipeline candidates, therapeutic sectors, and participants is included in a new and comprehensive report. The report documents and analyzes the results of a recent survey of inhaled drug delivery conducted by Greystone Research Associates.
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