Companies in the global anti-infective drugs market are working towards constant innovation to provide more effective drugs in order to succeed in this highly competitive market. The US Food and Drug Administration approved 22 new drugs in 2016. Drugs for infectious diseases was the largest group of these at 40% (9) approvals. Recently approved antibiotic drugs include Descovy from Gilead Lifesciences, Zepatier from Merck & Co., and others.
The demand for new drug candidates for antimicrobial-resistant infections is increasing. Antimicrobial resistance is a serious concern for global public health, as it results in long duration of illness, the requirement for additional tests, use of more expensive drugs, and potential incurable infections and epidemics. Antimicrobial resistance occurs when microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi change and adapt following exposure to antimicrobial drugs such as antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals, anthelmintics, and others. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), globally, 480,000 people are developing multi-drug resistant TB each year and drug resistance is also starting to complicate the treatment of malaria and HIV. Companies are investing in developing new drug candidates to treat drug-resistant infections. For instance, in 2014, Cubist Pharmaceuticals launched a new antibiotic, Zerbaxa (ceftolozane/tazobactam), for complicated intra-abdominal infections, complicated urinary tract infections, and also for infections of the kidney (pyelonephritis). Also, Johnson & Johnson launched Sirturo (bedaquiline) for pulmonary multi-drug resistant tuberculosis. In November 2013, Roche and Polyphor Ltd entered into a licensing agreement to develop and commercialize Polyphor’s investigational macrocycle antibiotic, POL7080, for the treatment of pseudomonas aeruginosa bacterial infections, which have become resistant to many antibiotic treatments.
The global pharmaceutical drugs market, valued at $1,044.8 billion in 2019, will grow to about $1,170 billion by 2021, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.78%.
Companies in the pharmaceutical drugs market are active with multiple strategic collaborations and agreements. Top companies in the anti-infective drug market are strategically partnering and collaborating with other companies to broaden their product ranges and services. For instance, in May 2015, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, entered into an exclusive worldwide license and collaboration arrangement with Achillion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to develop and commercialize one or more of Achillion’s lead hepatitis C virus (HCV) assets, which include ACH-3102, ACH-3422, and sovaprevir. Also, in December 2016, Evotec AG made a strategic alliance with Forge Therapeutics, Inc. to advance its novel Gram-negative antibiotic programme targeting ‘LpxC’ for the treatment of bacterial infections. Chimerix and ContraVir Pharmaceuticals also entered into a strategic collaboration for antiviral drug candidate CMX157.