SYDNEY, Aug. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Rising public awareness of breast cancer and available treatments have increased revenues in the breast cancer therapeutics market in Australia. As the most common cancer diagnosed in Australia's female population, the total number of breast cancer patients in the country was 164,814 in 2008. This figure is estimated to reach 304,511 patients by 2013. Globally, breast cancer is second to lung cancer as the cause of death among women.
Initiatives such as the BreastScreen Australia program, which provides free mammography services to aid in the early detection of breast cancer, have resulted in oncologists seeing more early stage disease. This, combined with aggressive and targeted therapy has, in turn, resulted in a reduction in the number of locally-advanced and metastatic breast cancer patients in the country.
The use of molecular targeted therapies as effective forms of cancer therapy is becoming more prevalent. These therapies are specifically designed to target cancer cells, while minimizing the adverse effects on normal cells when compared to cytotoxic chemotherapeutic drugs. New offerings must constitute therapies that will improve quality of life and survival rates if they are to thrive in this highly competitive market.
"Biopharmaceutical companies are placing more emphasis on developing targeted breast cancer therapies that offer patients not only increased efficacy, but reduced side effects as well," explains Carole Gaffud, Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst. "There are several new targeted therapies and chemotherapy drugs under development, including Epotheliones and Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor (VEGFR) inhibitors."
However, chemotherapy continues to be used widely for now. This may be attributed to the fact that the use of targeted therapy is limited due to access and affordability issues, thereby making those complements rather than substitutes for chemotherapy. "Due to higher cost compared to cytotoxic and hormonal therapies, the use of targeted therapies in Australia is and will continue to be largely dependent on their price and availability on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS)," says Gaffud.
Currently, only Herceptin (for early stage breast cancer patients) and Tykerb (for advanced/metastatic breast cancer patients) are subsidized through the PBS. Nonetheless, innovative targeted therapies are showing great promise and are being touted as the future of breast cancer treatment. Combinations of these highly specific therapies with existing cytotoxic and hormonal therapies will soon become the standard of oncology care.
Frost & Sullivan's latest research service on The Breast Cancer Therapeutics Market in Australia provides competitive structure, market analysis and future trends for the breast cancer drug therapies (cytotoxic, hormonal and targeted) in Australia.
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