Posts tagged ‘Pharma Commercial Strategy’
August 20th, 2012
To better showcase our pharmaceutical marketing strategy, KOL market research, new product development and competitive intelligence services we have recently upgraded the Icarus Consultants website.
Thanks to The Theme Foundry who provided outstanding customer service.
We hope that you like the new/look feel, particularly the homepage that combines company news, information on our services and why you should consider working with us.
Some of the new features you will see include:
- Video on the Homepage: we plan to change this regularly. At the moment it features a preview of ASCO 2012.
- New page with Case Studies. Client confidentiality prohibits us from saying too much, but we’ve attempted to give a flavor of some of our recent projects.
- Responsive theme: the site is now optimized for viewing on tablets and mobile devices.
If you have any comments about our new look or would like to learn more about our services, please contact us.
March 3rd, 2012
At the recent European Association of Urology (EAU) Annual Congress in Paris, one of the rumours was that the price of abiraterone (Zytiga) has been discounted 40% to the UK National Health Service (NHS) in order to obtain reimbursement approval from the National Institute for Health & Clinical Excellence (NICE).
As Sally notes in her video report from EAU 2012, if true, this has important commercial implications in the advanced prostate cancer market and potential new entrants such as MDV3100.
When looking at the prostate cancer competitive landscape and a market entry strategy, one of the issues to consider is reimbursement.
Regulatory approval to market a drug in Europe does not automatically mean it will be reimbursed or paid for by healthcare providers. Abiraterone is a good example of this.
Another driver of price and reimbursement will be the cumulative cost of treatment for advanced prostate cancer. This is set to increase dramatically as new products such as MDV3100 and Alpharadin come to market, and their use moves from post-chemotherapy to the pre-chemotherapy setting.
You can gain more insights on some of the future challenges by watching Sally’s excellent conference coverage video from EAU 2012:
There is also more information from EAU 2012 on Biotech Strategy Blog e.g. on Bayer’s Expanded Access Program for Alpharadin and an update on Millennium’s orteronel (TAK-700), a competitor to abiraterone.
Sally’s next conference video will be from the forthcoming American Assocation for Cancer Research (AACR) 2012 annual meeting that takes in place Chicago from March 31 – April 4. We hope to see you there.
January 31st, 2012
Cancer drug development is becoming more targeted and focused as a result of scientific advances. The understanding of ALK gene rearrangements in lung cancer led to the development of crizotinib (Xalkori) for the subset of patients who are ALK-positive.
Sally Church, Ph.D on Pharma Strategy Blog has reviewed some of the recent advances in our understanding of colororectal cancer (CRC).
Resistance to chemotherapy in colon cancer
As Sally noted, “the presence of the TFAP2E-DKK4 mutation may explain why some patients with colorectal cancer do better with chemotherapy than others.”
Inflammation linked to the early development of colon cancer
Researchers from MD Anderson Cancer Center have identified the role of inflammation and silencing of tumor suppressor genes in early colorectal cancer.
Understanding the biology of the disease could lead to the ability to identify those at high risk of developing colon cancer. Chemopreventative drugs could then be given to this subset of high risk patients to delay the onset of cancer. An exciting prospect!
Understanding the role of CIMP in early colorectal cancer
CpG island methylator phenotype (CIMP) can occur in 30% of colorectal cancer patients and has been shown to be an independent predictor of survival with 5FU in early or adjuvant CRC. CIMP may play an important role in tumor development. Expect to hear more on the link between inflammation, DNA methylation and early development of CRC.
Identifying subsets of patients will support rational drug development
Researchers have now shown that BRAF(V600E) mutations occur in 8-10% of colon cancers. The ability to identify this subset of patients could allow therapeutic options to be specifically targeted at them, in the same way that ALK+ lung cancer patients now receive crizotinib. Previously though, we didn’t know why vemurafenib was showing lack of efficacy in this group. New research has now given us some pointers.
As Sally noted on Pharma Strategy Blog, “a combination of vemurafenib and and an EGFR inhibitor such as as erlotinib, cetuximab or gefitinib, might be a useful clinical approach to try therapeutically in patients with colon cancer harboring the BRAFV600E mutation.”
As we learn more about the biology and early development of colorectal cancer, the ability to undertake rational drug development will increase. This is good news both for patients and for biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies who want to successfully bring new products to market.
January 8th, 2012
This weeks sees the start of the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco. Thousands of pharma/biotech investors, analysts, venture capitalists and company executives will meet to pitch, showcase their companies and make deals. A lot of people seemed to be on the same “VC express” flight from the East Coast.
Although many of the corporate presentations will be webcast over the next few days, it is expected that a lot of the news and commentary will be shared on twitter.
We are aggregating the #JPM12 tweets. If you are unable to be in San Francisco, you can follow the conversation below:
January 4th, 2012
While everyone is busy making predictions about what the New Year will bring, we are already thinking about what are going to be hot topics at the 2012 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
ASCO is the largest and most important meeting of the year for those involved in oncology new product development and marketing strategy.
Predicting what will be hot at a meeting and when new trial data will be presented is not easy. However, positive or negative data from a major clinical trial can have a huge impact on a market or in the case of new products in development, the market potential.
Prior to ASCO 2011, Sally Church produced the following preview video. It’s still worth watching if you missed it the first time round.
Sally has already started working on her list of what may be hot at ASCO 2012 in preparation for this year’s video.
On Pharma Strategy Blog yesterday, Sally discussed the recent results for the VEGF inhibitor tivozanib (AVEO/Astellas) in advanced renal cancer (RCC).
Tivozanib showed a greater progression free survival (PFS) compared to sorafenib, but “the sorafenib arm did better than expected,” noted Sally. You can read more analysis about what this means on Pharma Strategy Blog.
The tivozanib data has been submitted as an abstract for ASCO this year (abstract deadline is February 1st), leading Sally to conclude that:
“This year’s ASCO is going to be a most interesting meeting for renal cell cancer.”
Time perhaps to starting making your New Year predictions of what may be hot at ASCO in 2012?
Update May 16, 2012 – What’s hot at ASCO 2012?
Sally Church on Pharma Strategy Blog has published her preview of the ASCO 2012 meeting and what interesting data she’s expecting at #ASCO12.
You can watch Sally’s informative video below:
November 22nd, 2011
There was a lot of interesting science at the recent AACR-NCI-EORTC Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics international conference in San Francisco.
In particular, the poster sessions offered the opportunity to discuss pre-clinical and early drug development work, and share insights into pathways and mechanisms of action. If you are in new product development, it’s a key meeting to attend.
What was the news at AACR molecular targets?
Sally Church on Pharma Strategy Blog aggregated the live tweets from the joint AACR-NCI-EORTC meeting, although the absence of wifi in the plenary sessions meant that there were fewer tweets than might have been expected.
Sally has written about some of the data presented on breast cancer at the meeting. In her insightful post she reviews the Syndax data for entinostat in second-line ER/PR+ breast cancer, and also asks whether ALK is a new target in inflammatory breast cancer (IBC)?
From what was heard at the meeting, there will be a lot of new breast cancer data at the forthcoming San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS) that Sally will also be attending.
More insights from AACR molecular targets will be available on Pharma Strategy Blog in the next few days.
Meanwhile on Biotech Strategy Blog, Pieter Droppert has written about some of the sessions he attended in San Francisco on:
- Overcoming barriers to new cancer drug development
- Improving cancer clinical trial design
- Prostate Cancer
Next year’s 2012 molecular targets meeting will be in Dublin, good news for all those who like Guinness!
November 11th, 2011
At Icarus Consultants, we help pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies bring new products to market.
When we look at the market opportunity for a new product, it’s not enough to have a great product, key to success is getting paid for it. Pricing and reimbursement are important in the commercial strategy!
Is it better to obtain the highest price for a new targeted therapy or alternatively have a lower price and obtain more market share? From a marketing strategy perspective, there is sometimes a case to be made for a lower price, but it’s a hard sell to convince senior management they are not leaving money on the table.
As to cancer immunotherapy, Dendreon with sipuleucel-T have shown that it can offer a survival benefits to some cancer patients. Other vaccines and immunotherapies are in development.
However, as Pieter Droppert points out in an insightful post on Biotech Strategy blog about a pilot study for PANVAC (Bavarian Nordic, CV-301), there remain a number of challenges that still have to be overcome. These include:
- How do we identify upfront which patients will respond to the vaccine?
- How do we evaluate how well patients are doing without clinically validated surrogate markers to aid in assessment?
You can read more on Biotech Strategy Blog.
There is a plenary session on cancer immunotherapy at the AACR-NCI-EORTC Cancer Molecular Targets & Therapeutics conference that starts in San Francisco tomorrow.
We look forward to obtaining further insights on the opportunities and challenges with cancer immunotherapy at this meeting.
November 10th, 2011
November 10, 2011 is the second worldwide neuroendocrine (NET) cancer awareness day. Pancreatic NET is what Steve Jobs sadly succumbed to.
In recognition of NET Cancer Day, Sally Church has written an insightful post on Pharma Strategy Blog about pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors and new treatment options. It is well worth reading!
Sally highlights two new therapies for pNET approved by the FDA this year:
- everolimus (Afinitor) from Novartis that targets mTOR, downstream of the PI3K/AKT pathway
- sunitinib (Sutent) from Pfizer, a multikinase inhibitor
Both showed a benefit over placebo with an increase in progression free survival (PFS). They do, however, have some challenges associated with their side effects.
Sally concludes that “in the future, we may well see sequencing studies emerge as well as other targeted therapies to prolong outcomes for patients with this rare disease.”
We hope that the Neuroendocrine Cancer Awareness day achieves its goal of raising awareness about this disease. You can read more on Pharma Strategy Blog.
October 26th, 2011
That sounds like a simple question, but can actually be difficult to answer.
As part of a market entry strategy or overview of the commercial landscape, we often have to look at the regulatory framework in a country.
For many products from pharma or biotech it’s obvious that something is a drug, medicinal product, biological product or device. However, for those involving nanotechnology, tissue engineering, biologics, or combinations of drugs/devices, it can be less clear.
Understanding how a product is classified from a regulatory perspective, something that may differ between countries, will impact a path to market strategy.
In the United States, under the Federal, Food Drug and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 321), the term “drug” includes:
“articles intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease in man or other animals.”
Dietary supplements such as vitamins are usually not considered to be drugs.
However, new research is coming out that shows vitamins may be more active than we may have previously thought.
Pieter Droppert on Biotech Strategy Blog has commented on research that showed giving vitamin E supplements to healthy men led to a 17% increased risk of prostate cancer.
In future it is possible that the regulatory classification for vitamins may change if they end up being given as active compounds for the treatment of a disease. What is a drug remains a simple question, but one that is not always easy to answer.