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Findings From Pharmacor HPV Study


( - December 1, 2003) A study by Decision Resources Pharmacor finds that the human papillomavirus (HPV) market will grow from approximately $135 million in 2002 to $1.4 billion in 2012.

From the Study
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), is now recognized as the causative agent of both genital warts and cervical dysplasia, the two major clinical manifestations of HPV. Currently, more than 1 million people are afflicted with genital warts and almost 13 million have HPV-related cervical dysplasia (in the term cervical dysplasia, we include the range of premalignant states - low-grade and high-grade squamous cell intraepithelial lesions [SIL] - that precede invasive cancer).

Current treatments for these diseases - which include surgery, cryotherapy, and topical agents (for genital warts only) - are associated with significant unmet need. Because surgical intervention is costly and, in the case of cervical dysplasia, can impact a woman’s ability to bear children, experts say that significant opportunity exists for pharmacological agents that can treat or prevent HPV infection.

Furthermore, neither surgery nor current pharmacological agents eradicate the underlying HPV infection, and many patients suffer from recurrent episodes of disease. Several therapeutic and prophylactic vaccines are poised to fill this need, and these novel classes, particularly the prophylactic vaccines, will drive the majority of market growth over our study period.

Among the key findings of our research and analysis are the following:

- The human papillomavirus (HPV) market offers significant opportunity for development, particularly in treatment of cervical HPV infection, which is associated with significant morbidity and cost because of the cancer that can result from HPV-related cervical dysplasia. Sales in the HPV market in 2002 were a relatively modest $135 million; growth in the market is expected with the introduction of prophylactic vaccines.

- A prophylactic vaccine that prevents HPV infection is the most pressing need in this indication, especially one that offers broad coverage against the major HPV types associated with cervical dysplasia and subsequent cervical cancer.

- The HPV drugs with the highest sales (and no generics competition) are the immunomodulators for treatment of genital warts. (Note that surgery is the only current treatment option for cervical dysplasia.) During our study period, however, the emerging prophylactic vaccines for prevention of genital warts and cervical dysplasia will drive growth and dominate the market in 2012.

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