Crowded market could blunt profits for hypertension techs

The device world's heavy hitters are in a race to get renal denervation devices on the market in the U.S., but a new report from Millennium Research Group (MRG) says the crowded marketplace could cut into profits.

The next generation of renal denervation techs are designed to treat drug-resistant hypertension, a market MRG says will reach $2.9 billion by 2021. But physicians polled by the firm said they want the biggest blood pressure drop for the longest time at the lowest price, and that will drive competition between devicemakers and force down prices, MRG reports.

"[The physicians] are certainly eager for these devices to be effective, but that doesn't mean that cost considerations are not relevant," MRG's Stephanie LaBelle said in a statement. "If manufacturers think they can demand large price premiums for highly featured devices, they may find themselves disappointed."

Of course, that's unlikely to dissuade the device giants in a scrum to get their new gadgets on stateside shelves. Medtronic ($MDT) leads the field with its Symplicity system, which it hopes to get approved for U.S. sales in 2015. On its heels is arch rival St. Jude Medical ($STJ) and its EnligHTN device, and the two companies have squabbled over trial results, arguing over which device is most effective.

Medtronic and St. Jude already have CE marks and European sales for their devices, and the same goes for Covidien ($COV) and its OneShot tech. Late to the game is Boston Scientific ($BSX), which in June announced a plan to get a CE mark for its RDN renal denervation device in 2013.

- read MRG's release

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