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Surveyed U.S. Pulmonologists Expect to Treat Nearly 50 Percent of Their Severe, Refractory Asthma Patients With a Biologic or Biosimilar Version of Xolair By the End of 2018

BURLINGTON, Mass., April 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that surveyed U.S. pulmonologists estimate that only 19 percent of their severe, refractory asthma patients are treated with Genentech/Novartis's Xolair, the only approved drug that serves this population. However, by the end of 2018, when three novel biologics and biosimilar versions of Xolair are expected to be available, surveyed pulmonologists estimate that nearly 50 percent of their severe, refractory patients will be treated. This response demonstrates the great unmet need for this population that will be at least partially filled by the emerging biologics.


The new U.S. Physician & Payer Forum report entitled How Will U.S. Physician and Payer Attitudes and Decisions Shape the Asthma Market for Patients with Severe, Refractory Disease? also finds that most surveyed pulmonologists are receptive to prescribing biosimilar versions of Xolair in their first year of availability and intend to prescribe Boehringer Ingelheim/Pfizer's Spiriva upon its approval for asthma. As a result, these prescribing habits could delay prescribing of branded biologics to a later line of therapy.

The report also finds that surveyed managed care organization (MCO) pharmacy and medical directors' expected formulary tier positions of emerging biologics depend on price more so than potential Phase III clinical trial results, suggesting that price point is important for ensuring favorable formulary coverage despite the unmet need for additional treatment options for severe, refractory asthma.

"Surveyed payers indicated that the most common restriction placed on the emerging biologics will be prior authorization, which is similar to what is currently in place for Xolair," said Decision Resources Analyst Colleen Albacker , Ph.D. "Forty-one percent of patients eligible for Xolair never receive the drug, with pulmonologists citing cost- and reimbursement-related issues as the major reasons, and the emerging biologics may face the same fate due to payer cost controls."

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 Group company.

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

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

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