Eli Lilly set to compete with rivals Pfizer and Novartis on breast cancer drug

The results of the recent breast cancer drug trial of the leading pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly is set to challenge its competitors, as it adds its new medicine abemaciclib to the standard cancer therapy. The FDA has recently granted Eli Lilly’s abemaciclib a priority review, while experts state that the company will be able to deliver positive data that is needed to win over regulations in Monarch-3. According to the researchers, abemaciclib with the standard cancer therapy can reduce the risk of breast cancer progression by 46%.

If abemaciclib is able to clear all tests and come clean, FDA’s official approval for this drug will open doors for Eli Lilly to be the third entrant in the CDK 4/6 inhibitors market, behind Pfizer’s Ibrance and Novartis’ Kisqali.

Pfizer’s Ibrance is currently the market leader and is ahead of Kisqali, thus coveting its first-to-market advantage. Pfizer with its blockbuster Ibrance, has already set the bar high for the new entrants, beating all other therapies to become the new standard of treatment. However, though Pfizer is likely be the stand-out winner, all of the CDK 4/6 inhibitors are expected to be widely adopted by physicians. The global HER2-negative Breast Cancer Market is thus poised to witness fierce competition, as individual development strategies will set these three pharma giants (Pfizer, Novartis, Eli Lilly) apart from each other to gain prominence and expand their global reach. Moreover, better market opportunities for these pharma giants will be dependent on individual patient’s need, cost, and their availability in different countries.

Lilly’s abemaciclib will be an interesting addition to the options which breast cancer patients already have. As per the ongoing study dubbed as Monarch-3, 59% of patients treated with this drug had their tumors shrink compared to 44% of those taking endocrine drugs with the standard therapy. The breast cancer experts involved in the study further revealed that, in terms of efficacy, all the rival drugs from Pfizer, Lilly and Novartis appeared “quite similar” and there is no such preferred drug at the moment amongst the three. However, there is one difference in the way these three drugs are consumed. Abemaciclib is a daily pill and is given continuously, while Pfizer and Novartis treatments are rather taken in on-off cycles.

For the record, industry analysts foresee the new Lilly drug to grab USD 1.8 billion in annual sales by 2023.

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Ojaswita Kutepatil

Ojaswita Kutepatil develops content for Market Size Forecasters. A mechanical engineer by qualification, worked as a BDE and Technical Engineer before switching her profession to content writing. As an Associate Content writer, where she pens down write-ups pertaining to the market research industry...

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