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The Impact of Genericization in the Unipolar Depression Market Will be Tempered by the Continued Uptake of Novel Antidepressants and Antipsychotics

Companies mentioned in this article: Decision Resources Group

BURLINGTON, Mass., Aug. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources Group finds that in the unipolar depression* market, the expanding use of two recently approved therapies--Lundbeck/Takeda Pharmaceutical's Brintellix (vortioxetine), Actavis (formerly Forest Laboratories)/Pierre Fabre's Fetzima (levomilnacipran ER)--together with the forecasted launch of Otsuka Pharmaceutical/Lundbeck's brexpiprazole in the major pharmaceutical markets (United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom and Japan) will offset a steep near-term decline in sales resulting from the loss of market exclusivity for the two key drugs prescribed for unipolar depression--duloxetine (Eli Lilly/Shionogi's Cymbalta/Xeristar, generics) and the atypical antipsychotic Abilify (Bristol-Myers Squibb/Otsuka Pharmaceutical's aripiprazole). By 2023, total major-market sales for unipolar depression will reach under $10 billion.

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Other key findings from the Pharmacor report entitled Unipolar Depression:

    --  Later-line treatments: Newer antidepressant therapies will be prescribed
        as third- and fourth-line treatment for patients whose depressive
        symptoms are inadequately addressed by generic selective serotonin
        reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and/or serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake
        inhibitors (SNRIs), or for patients who cannot tolerate available
        therapies.
    --  Use of atypical antipsychotics: In the absence of more-efficacious
        alternatives, use of atypical antipsychotics as adjunctive treatment in
        patients with a poor response to antidepressants will continue to grow;
        in particular, the launch of generic aripiprazole during the study
        period will drive greater use of this drug in this capacity.
    --  Brintellix use in treatment non-responders: Brintellix, supported by
        extensive clinical trial data in depression, will experience modest
        uptake during the forecast period as a later line alternative in
        treatment non-responders. Studies have shown that Brintellix may confer
        improvements in cognition--a significant advantage over other
        antidepressants--and offers a low risk of weight-gain and sexual
        dysfunction. Even as a later-line option, Brintellix's relatively high
        price will drive its major-market peak-year sales to more than $2.4
        billion in 2022.
    --  Remaining opportunity for novel agents: Despite extensive generic
        availability of early-line antidepressants and increasingly restrictive
        reimbursement environments across the markets under study, opportunity
        remains for novel antidepressants because a sizable proportion of the
        drug-treated population responds suboptimally to available
        monoaminergic-targeted drugs.

Comments from Decision Resources Group Analyst Alana K. Simorellis, Ph.D.:

    --  "The launch of generic versions of two key therapies--duloxetine and
        Abilify--will not only result in a dramatic near-term drop in sales due
        to extensive and rapid uptake of generics but also create market access
        pressures for newer agents launching in these drug classes: Fetzima and
        brexpiprazole, respectively."
    --  "Treatment-resistant depression--that is, major depressive disorder that
        does not respond to at least two adequate courses of antidepressant
        therapy--has and will continue to be the area of greatest unmet need in
        the treatment of depression over the next ten years. An agent proven to
        be more effective than current agents in treatment-resistant patients
        would be welcomed by physicians and would likely be used as part of
        combination therapy."

*Unipolar depression encompasses major depressive disorder, minor depression and dysthymia.

About Decision Resources Group
Decision Resources Group is a cohesive portfolio of companies that offers best-in-class, high-value information and insights on important sectors of the healthcare industry. Clients rely on this analysis and data to make informed decisions. Please visit Decision Resources Group at www.DecisionResourcesGroup.com.

All company, brand, or product names contained in this document may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

For more information, contact:
Decision Resources Group
Christopher Comfort
781-993-2597
ccomfort@dresourcesgroup.com

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SOURCE Decision Resources Group