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Biologic Agents Will Drive the Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Drug Market to More Than Quadruple to Nearly $2 Billion in 2018

WALTHAM, Mass., Aug. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that the entry and uptake of premium-priced biologics will drive the systemic lupus erythematosus drug market to more than quadruple from approximately $420 million in 2008 to nearly $2 billion in 2018.

The new Pharmacor report entitled Systemic Lupus Erythematosus finds that the primary drivers of market growth will be the entry and uptake of Human Genome Sciences/GlaxoSmithKline's Benlysta, Biogen Idec/Roche's ocrelizumab, and Immunomedics/UCB's epratuzumab. In 2018, these three agents, combined with the continued uptake of rituximab (Biogen Idec/Roche/Chugai/Zenyaku Kogyo's Rituxan, Roche's MabThera), will account for more than 80 percent of sales in the systemic lupus erythematosus drug market. In 2008, the market was characterized by extensive use of generics and the majority of sales were driven by the off-label use of two branded agents -- Roche/Galenica's CellCept and rituximab. The off-label use of CellCept, rituximab and other therapies exemplifies the unusual dynamics of the systemic lupus erythematosus market.

"The continued uptake of rituximab, despite its failure in recent clinical trials, highlights the significant challenges associated with drug development for systemic lupus erythematosus, the high unmet need in the indication and the unusual dynamics of this market," said Decision Resources Analyst Dancella Fernandes, Ph.D. "Rituximab's contribution to growth will be greater in the near-term but, from 2013 to 2018, its sales will decline modestly as biosimilar versions of the drug emerge in Europe in 2013 and in the United States in 2015."

The report also finds that the partial replacement of current, predominantly generic, immunosuppressants by branded, premium-priced immunosuppressants will also contribute to market growth. Novartis's Myfortic and Roche/Galenica's CellCept will take market share away from GlaxoSmithKline/Prometheus's Imuran as maintenance treatments as well as Bristol-Myers Squibb's Cytoxan as induction treatments.

About Decision Resources

Decision Resources ( is a world leader in market research publications, advisory services and consulting designed to help clients shape strategy, allocate resources and master their chosen markets. Decision Resources is a Decision Resources, Inc. company.

About Decision Resources, Inc.

Decision Resources, Inc. 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, Inc. at

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