Cancer combinations expected to increase

 The use of combination therapies in the treatment of cancer patients is set to increase in the future, according to a new report.

Analysis found that oncological treatments are evolving to include biologic medication, which, in combination with cytotoxic drugs, is rapidly becoming the top pharmaceutical therapy.

GBI Research’s report found the effective capabilities of biologics in controlling and treating complications has led to their widespread use and popularity amongst patients and prescribers.

The cytotoxic therapies markets has eight major indications and brands include Taxotere (docetaxel), Alimta (pemetrexed) and Xeloda (capecitabine) – all of which have exceeded sales of $1 billion.

However, these drugs are set to be exposed to generic competition in coming years which will reduce the cost of combinational treatments.

The popularity of such treatments is also expected to convince pharmaceutical companies to apply for label extensions on their existing biologics portfolio for multiple oncology complications.

This, the report said, will support the continued development of cytotoxic drugs in the future, despite significant safety hurdles that have previously led to weak pipelines.

The cytotoxic therapies market accounted for $6.5 billion in revenue ten years ago. It grew at an annual rate of 5.8% to reach $10.1 billion in 2010. The report now expects generic competition to reduce revenues in the market by 2017 to $7.6 billion – despite predicted uptake.