Report: A-fib drugs to reach nearly $7B by 2019, with Multaq earning $650M

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The launch and uptake of novel oral anticoagulants and antiarrhythmic agents—specifically, drugs from Boehringer Ingelheim, Bayer HealthCare/Johnson & Johnson, Bristol-Myers Squibb/Pfizer and Sanofi-Aventis—will drive the atrial fibrillation drug market to increase more than eight-fold, from $843 million in 2009 to $6.8 billion in 2019, according to a report from market research firm Decision Resources.

The sales of new oral anticoagulants will be led by Boehringer Ingelheim’s dabigatran (Pradaxa), Bayer/Johnson & Johnson’s rivaroxaban (Xarelto) and Bristol-Myers Squibb/Pfizer’s apixaban. In 2019, new oral anticoagulants will capture nearly three-quarters of the atrial fibrillation drug market in the U.S., France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the U.K. and Japan, the report found.

Market growth will also be driven by Sanofi-Aventis’s dronedarone (Multaq), a recent addition to the antiarrhythmic drug armamentarium, Decision Resources reported. In a pivotal Phase III clinical trial, dronedarone was shown to reduce rates of hospitalization in atrial fibrillation patients. However, despite this promising development, the report found that dronedarone will face a number of challenges to gain traction in the market.

“Multaq’s primary challenge will be its modest antiarrhythmic efficacy compared with that of its main competitor, amiodarone [Sanofi-Aventis’s generic Cordarone],” said report analyst Matthew Killeen, PhD. “Nevertheless, we expect that Multaq’s expansion into the permanent atrial fibrillation patient segment will catalyze stronger rates of uptake across all patient populations. As a result, we forecast Multaq to garner sales of more than $650 million in 2019.”