Biologics will dominate in 2014

According to forecasting firm EvaluatePharma, six of the top ten drugs in 2014 will be biologics. Analysts predict that Roche's cancer antibody Avastin will lead the pack at $9.2 billion in annual sales, with Abbott and Eisai's Humira a close second at $9.1 billion in sales. Rituxan (Roche), Enbrel (Wyeth, Amgen and Takeda) Lantus (Sanofi), Herceptin (Roche) and Remicade (J&J and Schering Plough) make up the other biologics that will dominate the market in 2010. Of these seven, only three--Rituxan, Remicade and Avastin--were top 10 drugs in 2008. And not only will biotech drugs make up the majority of the bestsellers, Evaluate predicts that half of the top 100 drugs in 2014 will be biologics.

Noticeably absent from this list are current bestsellers Lipitor, Plavix, Advair, Diovan and Nexium, which will all see sales drop due to generic competition.

"Anti-cancer antibodies appear set to easily become the most valuable therapeutic class of drug, justifying a large proportion of Roche's recent move to acquire Genentech outright." It also validates the trend of Big Pharma players acquiring small and mid-sized biotech now, while valuations are down.

The report underscores how important it is for Big Pharma to invest in biotechnology. While companies like Roche may be sitting pretty, big-name companies like Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline are missing from the top 10 list in 2014. The "...weight of evidence for a shift to biotech products as the industry's growth driver is overwhelming, making the recent moves by Big pharma to access biotech platforms, not only for generating innovative medicines but also to launch bio-similar products, all the more compelling," observed the firm in its report. 

- here's 2008's sales and 2014's projections
- see the report
- read the Reuters' write-up

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