The multiple sclerosis market size was valued at USD 21,107 million in 2019 and is projected to grow with a CAGR of 2.5%.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a demyelinating disease that causes damage to the insulating covers of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. The disorder leads to nervous system failure, which triggers many signs and symptoms, including physical, mental, and psychological problems. Some of the other symptoms include double vision, blindness in one eye, muscle fatigue, sensation deficiency, or coordination dysfunction.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) types include relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), progressive primary MS (PPMS), and progressive secondary MS (SPMS). RRMS is the most common type characterized by specific attacks with the neurological symptoms; on the other hand, PPMS is the rare type and characterized by the gradual progression of the disease. Combinations of genetic and environmental factors are responsible for the onset of the condition. As per a 2013 study by the International Progressive Alliance, MS is two to three times more common among women than in men, implying that hormones play a significant role in determining susceptibility to the disease.
Multiple sclerosis is a prevalent neurological disabling condition that is diagnosed in people in the 20–50 age groups. This autoimmune condition affects 2.5 million people with a global incidence of around 7 cases per 100,000 people per year, as per the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, in 2017. The study also reports that the prevalence rates vary across ethnicity and geographical latitude, ranging from 50 to 120 cases per 100,000 populations.
North America dominates the multiple sclerosis therapeutics market on account of high prevalence of the condition and rising economic burden, further driving the adoption of novel therapeutics. In the U.S., about 400,000 people live with the disease, and about 200 new cases are diagnosed each week, as per the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, in 2015. Multiple sclerosis ranks second after congestive heart failure, with direct and indirect healthcare costs ranging from USD 8,528 to USD 54,244 per patient per year, as per a survey in 2015 by Healthline Media. Thus, higher therapy cost hinders the multiple sclerosis therapeutics market growth.
Organizations, such as the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Parkinson’s Action Network, and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, are undertaking extensive efforts to develop novel therapies for MS. For instance, the scientists at the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation are conducting research to understand, manage, and treat the condition, and are performing clinical trials to explore the efficacy of stem cell therapies, including mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), and neural stem cells (NSCs).
In 2013, the Progressive MS Alliance was established to specifically research and develop advanced treatment options for people with progressive forms of MS, which currently has a total of 20 projects with researchers based in nine countries. Similarly, in 2015, the MS Society of Canada and the Canadian Institute of Health Research funded new research to the University of Alberta to investigate novel therapeutic strategies to reduce inflammation in the brain, a key factor responsible for muscle disability associated with multiple sclerosis.
Extensive Use of Immunosuppressant to Treat Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis Drives the Segment Growth
Based on drug type, the market is segmented into immunomodulatory, immunosuppressant, interferons, and corticosteroids. The immunosuppressant segment held the highest market share in the multiple sclerosis market on account of their effectiveness for patients suffering from relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). Increasing product approvals for the treatment of MS therapies bolsters the segment growth.
Some of the additional advantages associated with these drugs, such as effective administration with low dosage requirements, minimal side effects, and high efficacy, provide an impetus to the market growth. Alemtuzumab, fingolimod, glatiramer acetate, natalizumab, interferon-beta preparations, dimethyl fumarate, ocrelizumab, and teriflunomide are some of the approved immunosuppressants that are used for treating relapsing types of MS.
The immunomodulators segment, on the other hand, is projected to grow at the fastest rate due to higher prescription rates, brand loyalty, and the presence of a wide range of drug alternatives. Currently available Immunomodulators drugs/brands in the market include Copaxone, Avonex/Plegridy, Gilenya, Tysabri, Betaseron/Extavia, Tecifidera, Rebif, and Ampyra.
Clinical Approvals and Higher Efficacy to Drive Oral Route of Administration Segment Growth
The oral route of administration segment dominates the market as it promotes patient satisfaction and increases therapeutic compliance. Significant clinical developments in the orally administered medications that have been approved for MS treatment, such as fingolimod, teriflunomide, and dimethyl fumarate, bolsters the segment growth. The introduction of novel oral drugs such as Ozanimod, Laquinimod, Tecfidera, and Siponimod (BAF312) drives the segment growth.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome, the coronavirus, fundamentally challenges the healthcare system. People suffering from MS are highly susceptible to the virus, and it is paramount for the individual departments to understand how to effectively handle the patients suffering from MS. Several guidelines were released by the National MS Society, MS International Federation, the Association of British Neurologists, regarding the management of MS during the pandemic.
Financial Support from the Government and Non-government Organizations Drives North Americas Market Growth
North America dominates the multiple sclerosis market on account of the strong presence of key players and the growing prevalence of multiple sclerosis. Companies such as Novartis AG, Sanofi SA, and Biogen have made their strong position in the U.S. market, and are continuously emphasizing more on establishing new drugs in the market. As per the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Canada has the highest prevalence of MS in the world (291 per 100,000). The National MS Society estimated that, in the U.S., about 1 million people suffer from MS.
In 2019, Alberta’s government, in collaboration with the Canadian Department of Economic Development, Trade, and Tourism, invested about USD 1 million in the Canadian Prospective Cohort Study to understand progression in MS (CanProCo) and promote technology and development to give a better understanding and management of the disease. CanProCo is an initiative to consolidate the efforts of nearly 50 MS researchers from across Canada. The initiative was further funded to raise a total of USD 10 million by Canada Brain Research, Biogen Canada, and the MS Society of Canada, as well as Hoffmann-La Roche Limited (Roche Canada). Thus, adequate financial support from the government and non-government organizations drives market growth.
Collaboration Activities by Key Players Drives Asia-Pacific’s Market Growth
Asia-Pacific is projected to offer lucrative opportunities in the multiple sclerosis market on account of high presence of unmet needs, along with the rapidly expanding healthcare infrastructure. Key players are entering into agreements with local drug manufacturers to capitalize on the growth opportunities. For instance, in 2013, Teva Pharmaceuticals and Takeda Pharmaceuticals entered into a collaborative agreement for the distribution of Copaxone in Japan. Copaxone (Glatiramer acetate subcutaneous injection) is an immunomodulator medication currently used to treat multiple sclerosis.
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