The huge potential of GLP-1 receptor agonists in the diabetes market opens opportunities for technology providers and Big Pharma

  • Weight reduction as unique feature of GLP-1R agonists
  • Results of cardiovascular outcomes studies eagerly awaited
  • Demonstration of protective effect on beta cells could further boost the market potential

STUTTGART, Germany | March 19, 2012 | La Merie Publishing released a new analysis of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP-1R) agonists regarding business, commercial, clinical and scientific aspects. The report entitled “Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 (GLP-1) Receptor Agonists - A Target Pipeline and Stakeholder Analysis 2012” analysed the GLP-1R agonist pipeline. The study revealed that in addition to the three approved and marketed GLP-1R agonists (Byetta, Victoza and once-weekly Bydureon) 66 R&D projects including eight life cycle versions are in the pipeline over all R&D stages.

The vast majority of new GLP-1R agonists are designed to have improved features which mainly are based on convenience (less frequent administration or non-invasive/oral administration). Molecules with less frequent subcutaneous administration make out half of all projects with 13 projects in clinical phases II or III, while 18 R&D projects are directed to non-invasive or oral administration of GLP-1R agonists with only one program in phase II. A strongly emerging third cluster of novel GLP-1 R agonists is that of GLP-1R agonists in combination with insulin at a fixed ratio and of GLP-1R co-agonists or dual targeting GLP-1R agonists, i.e. agonists which also act at the receptor of glucagon (mostly) or GIP.

The launch of the once daily GLP-1R agonist Victoza from Novo Nordisk in 2010 boosted the market size to US$ 1.7 bln in 2011. Victoza became a blockbuster in its second year on the market. The unique feature of weight reduction associated with the use GLP-1R agonists clearly differentiates this antidiabetic drug class from other established antidiabetics. The profound blood glucose lowering effect without significant hypoglycemia made GLP-1R agonists to a strongly emerging antidiabetic drug class. Gastrointestinal side effects such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea seem to be associated with the pharmacologic effect of GLP-1R agonism.

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SOURCE: La Merie Publishing


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