Global sales of cancer drugs will grow at a compounded annual rate of 12 to 15 percent, reaching $75 to $80 billion by 2012, according to a new forecast by IMS Health (NYSE: RX), the world’s leading provider of market intelligence to the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. The growth rate for oncology products will be nearly double the forecasted growth rate of the global pharmaceutical market, which grew at a 6.4 percent pace in 2007.

Contributing to global market growth is the increasing number of cancer patients on chemotherapy in Europe, Japan and North America, and evidence that more patients in the emerging markets are gaining access to modern targeted therapies. IMS also predicts in its annual forecast that growth will moderate over the next five years, reflecting financial constraints of payers, tapering growth of current blockbusters, fewer new blockbuster medications, and the loss of exclusivity of four oncology drugs with annual sales exceeding $1 billion. In 2008, sales of oncology products will exceed $48 billion, contributing nearly 17 percent of global pharmaceutical sales growth this year.

“Double-digit sales growth in oncology drugs will be fueled by increased use of targeted therapeutic agents introduced over the past 10 years, along with first-time innovations coming to the market and longer treatment periods for growing numbers of patients,” said Titus Plattel, IMS vice president for Oncology. “Recent innovations have improved quality of life, delayed disease progression and helped prolong survival for patients battling different types of cancer — including breast cancer, colon cancer, lymphoma, leukemia and kidney cancer. In addition, approximately 25 to 30 new anti-cancer agents are expected to be approved for a variety of new indications, helping to expand the treated patient population.”

The IMS 2008 Global Oncology Forecast identifies the following key market dynamics influencing market growth through 2012:

  • Budgetary constraints in major markets lead to increased rigor for selecting targeted therapies. Payers are increasingly focused on survival rates as a key determinant for reimbursement and formulary approval. Moreover, payers are scrutinizing response rates more closely, recognizing that any improvements would drive cost efficiencies. In fact, in some European countries (most notably the U.K. and Italy), payment based on pre-determined response criteria is being trialed on a collaborative basis between payers and pharmaceutical companies, resulting in a pay-for-performance approach.
  • Improved screening, diagnosis and access to innovative medicines in the developing world. Stronger growth will be driven by the pharmerging markets (China, Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, India, Turkey and Russia), where improvements in screening and diagnosis are becoming available and individuals are becoming more aware of cancer risks and available treatments.
  • New products and combination therapies. IMS expects future growth to be bolstered by the introduction of 25 to 30 new chemical entities between 2008 and 2012, helping to sustain the trend of an expanding patient population treated with targeted therapies. While many of these new therapies will treat the most prevalent tumor types — breast and non-small cell lung cancer — several new drugs in late-stage development will target prostate and pancreatic cancer as well as melanoma.
  • Growth contribution of the top markets falls. In 2007, 71 percent of oncology product sales came from the U.S. and Europe’s top five markets — France, Germany, Italy, the U.K. and Spain. IMS forecasts that by 2012, these markets will contribute approximately 65 percent of sales to the global oncology market.

The IMS Global Oncology Forecast

The IMS Global Oncology Forecastâ„¢ is the leading annual indicator of sales of oncology medicines and excludes the costs of specialized drug delivery such as intravenous therapy, intraperitoneal therapy, and other medical costs.

The forecast is developed by IMS’s team of oncology experts — supported by the company’s robust, global information assets, advanced analytics and consulting capabilities — helping clients to demonstrate the clinical and economic benefits of new therapies, while offering unmatched insights and understanding into the global oncology marketplace. IMS has completed more than 140 engagements related to oncology over the past 18 months, and has provided strategic pricing and market access insight for nine of the top 10 oncology products introduced over the past two years.

About IMS

Operating in more than 100 countries, IMS Health is the world’s leading provider of market intelligence to the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. With $2.2 billion in 2007 revenue and more than 50 years of industry experience, IMS offers leading-edge market intelligence products and services that are integral to clients’ day-to-day operations, including portfolio optimization capabilities; launch and brand management solutions; sales force effectiveness innovations; managed care and consumer health offerings; and consulting and services solutions that improve ROI and the delivery of quality healthcare worldwide. Additional information is available at

IMS Health
Gary Gatyas, 610-834-5338
Clive Savage, +44-20-3075-5311