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Medical Imaging Reagents Market

Medical Imaging Reagents Market: Information by Class (Contrast Reagents, Optical Reagents), Technology (Nanoparticles, Radiopharmaceuticals), Application, and Regions—Forecast Till 2031

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Market Overview

The global medical imaging reagents market size was valued at USD 10.67 billion in 2022. It is expected to reach USD 16.70 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 5.1% during the forecast period (2023–2031).

Reagents for medical imaging are substances that enhance images produced by imaging technology. These reagents allow doctors to identify cancerous spots on the body and determine whether a tumor is benign or malignant. Reagents for medical imaging can be improved by being synthesized to focus on a specific biological process. Imaging systems are then modified to account for these improvements to counteract a particular target. Before being used on humans, these imaging agents are first tested on animals. Medical imaging reagents come in three different varieties: contrast reagents, optical reagents, and nuclear reagents.


  • The contrast reagents segment is the highest contributor to the market by class.
  • The nanoparticles segment is the highest contributor to the market by technology. 
  • The diagnostics segment is the highest contributor to the market by application. 
  • North America is the most significant revenue contributor to the market.

Market Snapshot

market snapshot
Base Year
: 2022
Study Period
: 2021-2031
: 5.1 %
Fastest Growing Market
: Europe
Largest Market
: North America
Market Size
: USD 16.70 billion by 2031
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Market Dynamics

Global Medical Imaging Reagents Market Drivers

Increased Awareness of the Need for Early Disease Diagnosis

The likelihood of successful treatment increases with early diagnosis of chronic diseases. Therefore, healthcare professionals continually emphasize the importance of early clinical disorder diagnosis rather than spending much money on costly treatments. Additionally, to address this problem, the World Health Organization (WHO) has started several cancer prevention programs in various countries, including India, Korea, and Ireland, to reduce cancer incidence. By implementing evidence-based tactics for prevention, early diagnosis, treatment, and palliation, these programs aim to enhance the quality of life for cancer patients. Similarly, the American Cancer Society suggested and published guidelines for screening cancer suspects of all types. This diagnostic imaging screening recommendation includes physical examinations and scanning using imaging modalities like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultrasound, and X-ray. The demand for diagnostic imaging technologies and medical imaging reagents is anticipated to rise globally due to such initiatives, which are expected to raise awareness about the early detection of chronic disorders.

Increasing Demand for Diagnostic Imaging Procedures

Many imaging modalities are employed to diagnose and manage various chronic diseases. For instance, a marketing research and consulting company IMV Medical Information Division study estimates that computerized tomography (CT) scans in the United States were performed in a total of 91.4 million in 2019 and 88.7 million in 2018, respectively. Additionally, around 36 million magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were completed in the United States in 2017, according to Statista, a statistics firm that specializes in market and consumer data.

Furthermore, Healthcare resource statistics Europe reports that roughly 606,770 PET scans were performed in France in 2018. Additionally, in Germany, 12.3 million MRI scans were conducted in 2018. Thus, the growth of the medical imaging reagents market is anticipated to be aided by an increase in the number of imaging procedures and the installation of imaging equipment globally.

Global Medical Imaging Reagents Market Restraints

Shortage of Imaging Reagent Supplies

Due to their restricted availability across the globe, imaging reagents are only sometimes readily available for diagnostic purposes. It is now more expensive due to a shortage of imaging reagents like technetium-99m and molybdenum-99, which makes it challenging for end users to use imaging equipment for tasks like drug development and diagnosis. Thus, a lack of imaging reagents hinders market expansion worldwide, particularly in developing nations.

Global Medical Imaging Reagents Market Opportunities

Possibilities for Growth in Emerging Markets

Due to improved healthcare industry infrastructure, an increase in the number of diagnostic and pharmaceutical industries, technological advancements in the field of medical imaging, and a rise in demand for medical imaging reagents products, the market for medical imaging reagents is predicted to grow due to opportunities in untapped, emerging markets. Due to the increased demand for better-advanced manufacturing systems and significant government investments to upgrade healthcare infrastructure, the healthcare industry is proliferating in emerging economies. Additionally, diagnostic and pharmaceutical firms are concentrated in developing nations like China and India, creating lucrative market expansion opportunities.

Segmental Analysis

The global medical imaging reagents market is segmented by class, technology, and application.

Based on class, the global market is bifurcated into contrast reagents, optical reagents, and nuclear reagents.

The contrast reagents segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.1% during the forecast period. In medical imaging, a contrast reagent is a substance that increases the contrast of bodily fluids. Contrast agents do not emit radiation as radiopharmaceuticals do; instead, they absorb external ultrasound or electromagnetism. They are most frequently used to make the gastrointestinal tract and blood vessels more visible. Contrast agents are helpful in various procedures, including computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and ultrasound. The market offers a variety of contrast agents, some of which are used in medical imaging equipment. These agents include barium-based, gadolinium-based, and iodinated contrast agents. Contrast agents are given through various routes, including injections and oral, rectal, or urethral access.

Light is used in various medical applications, including medical optical imaging. Multiple devices that use optical imaging technology include scanning laser ophthalmoscopy, optical microscopy, spectroscopy, endoscopy, and optical coherence tomography. Proteomics, genomics, and cellular analysis are three fields that have rapidly adopted these technologies. Fluorescent dyes, probes, and proteins are optical reagents crucial to assays and procedures in medical optical imaging technology. These chemicals are primarily used during in vivo and in vitro studies in the pharmaceutical industry, as well as for research and development and various cell-based fluorescence analyses.

Based on technology, the global market is bifurcated into nanoparticles, fluorescent dyes and probes, radiopharmaceuticals, fluorescent proteins, and quantum dots.

The nanoparticles segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.6% during the forecast period. Nanoparticles are becoming increasingly popular as multi-modal imaging agents for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography (PET). For radionuclide imaging, novel techniques are being developed to synthesize and modify these particles. The size of nanomaterials determines how useful they are. Optical imaging is one of the few methods that enable research on the bio-distribution of nanomaterials in biological tissues. Demand for these goods has increased, which has increased R&D efforts to advance these particles.

Necessary chemicals used in optical imaging, such as near-infrared imaging, include fluorescent dyes and probes. Auto-fluorescent protein-based probes and small organic probes are two types of fluorescence probes that can be used in medical imaging equipment. Technology advancements have made it possible to combine a genetically encoded fluorescent probe with various proteins, allowing researchers to study intracellular protein movement and signaling pathways in living cells.

Based on application, the global market is bifurcated into diagnostics, drug discovery and development, and educational research.

The diagnostics segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.8% during the forecast period. Diagnostic imaging uses technologies to visualize various internal organs and body parts to diagnose various pathologies. Due to the unmatched insights that imaging techniques can offer into the human body, they are becoming an increasingly significant component of healthcare professionals' diagnostic toolkits. Numerous imaging technologies, including MRI, CT, and PET, are now frequently used in routine medical procedures in hospitals worldwide. Imaging agents help medical professionals spot anomalies in a diagnostic image. The use of medical imaging tools aids in the early detection of numerous fatal diseases.

Medical imaging techniques and reagents are used in clinical trials for new drugs to monitor therapy, identify responders, find and diagnose lesions, and detect and diagnose lesions. Additionally, imaging methods like PET aid in studying molecular endpoints and monitoring drug pharmacokinetics and distribution. Drug efficacy, imaging biomarkers, and surrogate imaging endpoints can all be evaluated more quickly and objectively with medical imaging techniques and reagents. These traits make it possible to get results quickly and with good statistical power. When no other suitable biomarkers are available, imaging methods and reagents also help to monitor drug safety.

Regional Analysis

The global medical imaging reagents market is segmented by region into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.

North America Dominates the Global Market

North America is the most significant revenue contributor and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.2% during the forecast period. The report considers the United States, Canada, and Mexico as the three major North American nations. The United States, a mature market, contributed the most revenue to North America in 2019. The demand for medical imaging reagents in North America accounted for the largest market share in 2019 (39.78%) and is predicted to continue to grow in the coming years. The rise in demand for technologically advanced medical imaging procedures, the higher number of R&D activities to develop novel medical imaging reagents, the surge in demand for advanced healthcare services with higher healthcare expenditures, and the rise in product approvals are the leading causes of this.

Europe is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.1% during the forecast period. Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, and the rest of Europe are among the five major European nations considered in the report. In 2019, Europe held a 30.32% market share for medical imaging reagents worldwide. Due to the increase in demand for medical imaging reagents and the dominance of major companies like Bayer AG, Bracco SpA, and Merck KGaA during the forecast period, the medical imaging reagents market in European countries is anticipated to expand steadily. The market is expected to grow due to the increased use of medical imaging reagents in advanced imaging techniques and ongoing efforts by the European Radiological Protection Competent Authorities (HERCA) to raise public awareness of the use of medical imaging.

Japan, China, India, Australia, South Korea, Taiwan, and the rest of Asia-Pacific are all included in the analysis of the region. This region held 22.89% of the global market for medical imaging reagents in 2019 and is anticipated to expand at the highest CAGR over the forecast period. These nations are densely populated, with China and India ranking first and second, respectively. Because of this, the area has the potential to provide a sizable customer base, which is anticipated to spur the growth of the Asia-Pacific medical imaging reagents market. Additionally, the market is growing due to an increase in healthcare spending and awareness of early disease diagnosis. Further, the region's rising prevalence of chronic diseases like cancer and cardiovascular disease also expands the market.

Brazil, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and the rest of LAMEA are studied in the LAMEA region. It held 7.01% of the market's overall share in 2019 and is anticipated to have significant growth potential. Due to a lack of hospitals offering cutting-edge medical procedures and a shortage of qualified medical personnel, the medical imaging reagents market in LAMEA is still in its infancy. Due to the rising target population, soaring demand for medical imaging reagents, and improved healthcare infrastructure, LAMEA is an emerging market that is anticipated to offer lucrative growth opportunities for key players. Additionally, the rising prevalence of cardiovascular diseases in LAMEA is increasing the use of medical imaging tools, propelling the market's expansion.

Medical Imaging Reagents Market Regional Analysis
Regional Growth Insights Download Free Sample

Top Key Players of Medical Imaging Reagents Market

  1. Bayer Ag
  2. Bracco Spa
  3. Cardinal Health
  4. Eli Lilly and Company
  5. General Electric Company (Ge Healthcare)
  6. Lantheus Holdings Inc.
  7. Li-Cor Biosciences Inc.
  8. Merck KGaA (Sigma-Aldrich)
  9. Perkinelmer Inc.
  10. Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc

Report Scope

Report Metric Details
CAGR 5.1%
Forecast Period 2023-2031
Report Coverage Revenue Forecast, Competitive Landscape, Growth Factors, Environment & Regulatory Landscape and Trends
Segments Covered
  1. By Class
    1. Contrast Reagents
    2. Optical Reagents
    3. Nuclear Reagents
  2. By Technology
    1. Nanoparticles
    2. Fluorescent Dyes and Probes
    3. Radiopharmaceuticals
    4. Fluorescent Proteins
    5. Quantum Dots
  3. By Applications
    1. Diagnostics
    2. Drug Discovery and Development
    3. Educational Research
Geographies Covered
  • North America
  • Europe
  • APAC
  • Middle East and Africa

Recent Developments

  • January 2023- Agilent Technologies and Akoya Biosciences collaborated to develop multiplex-immunohistochemistry diagnostic products for tissue analysis.
  • October 2022- Google Cloud introduced a digital suite for medical imaging.

Medical Imaging Reagents Market Segmentation

By Class

  • Contrast Reagents
  • Optical Reagents
  • Nuclear Reagents

By Technology

  • Nanoparticles
  • Fluorescent Dyes and Probes
  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Fluorescent Proteins
  • Quantum Dots

By Applications

  • Diagnostics
  • Drug Discovery and Development
  • Educational Research

By Regions

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia-Pacific

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the projected market value of the global medical imaging reagents market?
The global market size is projected to reach USD 16.70 billion by 2031.
Augmented awareness of the necessity for early disease diagnosis, and growing demand for diagnostic imaging procedures are some key drivers supporting the growth of the market.
The contrast reagents market sector is expected to dominate over the forecast period.
Bayer Ag, Bracco Spa, Cardinal Health, Eli Lilly and Company, Lantheus Holdings Inc., Li-Cor Biosciences Inc., Perkinelmer Inc are the prominent players in the market.
The global market growing at a CAGR of 5.1% from (2023–2031).
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