Industry Insight: Healthcare

Industry insights: Healthcare 18th June

Industry insights: Healthcare 18th June

  • Reading time:9 mins read

These are three healthcare industry stories that caught our eye last week. There are some fascinating developments happening in the fields of obesity management and oncology, both of which are areas in which we currently work.

Anti-obesity drug sales are predicted to hit $44B by 2030

Anti-obesity drugs have had increasing media attention, partly driven by TikTok and celebrity endorsements, like Elon Musk tweeting about his use of Wegovy, Novo Nordisk’s brand of semaglutide. The resultant high demand even led to a supply shortage of semaglutide.

Bloomberg Intelligence has found that sales of anti-obesity drugs could hit $44 billion in 2030, with the markets expected to be dominated by Novo Nordisk’s franchise. This is a dramatic increase driven by the aforementioned demand for obesity medications. At present anti-obesity drugs are only available in an injectable form, however Novo Nordisk is working on oral versions.

Anti-diabetic drugs are an area to keep a close eye on as demand is going to be high for these medications and will be an increasing area of focus for pharmaceutical companies. Ozempic has only been approved in New Zealand for use as an anti-diabetic drug.

Grail has presented promising results from its SYMPLIFY study of its Galleri multi-cancer early detection test during an oral session at 2023 ASCO annual meeting.

SYMPLIFY is a prospective study enrolling 6,238 people, aged 18 and older in England and Wales who were referred for investigation of symptoms suspicious for gynaecological, lung, lower gastrointestinal (GI) or upper GI cancer.

GRAIL’s multi-cancer early detection test looks for fragments of tumour DNA in the bloodstream. The test detected cancer in 323 people, with 244 people going on to be diagnosed with cancer. This gives a positive predictive value of 75.5%, negative predictive value of 97.6% and specificity of 98.4%. The overall sensitivity of the test was 66.3%, increasing to 95.3% in stage IV cancers.

The NHS plans to extend the test to another 1 million people in 2024 and 2025. There are currently very few available early detection screening tests for cancer. A test that utilises a simple blood draw, like GRAIL’s multi-cancer early detection test, has the potential to identify and treat cancer early. It is well demonstrated that early detection of cancer leads to higher overall survival rate than those that are detected late.

AstraZeneca’s phase 3 study (ADAURA) of Tagrisso has demonstrated a reduced risk of death by 51% compared to placebo in patients with early-stage epidermal growth factor receptor(EGFR)-mutated non-small cell lung cancer after complete tumour resection.

Tagrisso (Osimertinib) is a third generation epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor used to treat non-small cell carcinoma with specific mutations.

Furthermore, an estimated 88% of patients treated with Tagrusso were alive at five years compared to 78% in the placebo group. Median overall survival has yet to be reached in either treatment group. These results highlight the importance of testing for EGFR mutations early and subsequently starting treatment with targeted therapies. 

 

Elion Medical Communications has extensive experience in the areas of obesity management and oncology. Our oncology projects include work in breast cancer, lung cancer and melanoma, and in targeted therapies and immuno-oncology. To find out more about what we do, visit elion.nz

Elion Medical Communications