ITG's Majestic Market Research Prostate Cancer Study Indicates Amgen's Xgeva is Poised to Steal Significant Share From Novartis'

NEW YORK, March 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A study in the prostate cancer space completed this week by ITG's Majestic Market Research reveals that Amgen's (Nasdaq: AMGN) Xgeva (a.k.a. denosumab, Prolia) is on track to achieve its blockbuster sales potential and is already stealing share from the leading agent for skeletal related events, Novartis' (NYSE: NVS) Zometa.  As for Dendreon's (Nasdaq: DNDN) Provenge, the first FDA-approved therapeutic cancer vaccine, physicians are still clouded with uncertainty regarding whether/how they will incorporate the agent into their treatment paradigm once it finally becomes more widely available.

The report entitled Event Pulse: Launches of Xgeva and Provenge examines how the recent launches of Amgen's Xgeva and Dendreon's Provenge are shaking things up in prostate cancer treatment practices.

Amgen's denosumab first received approval for osteoporosis in June 2010 under the trade name Prolia.  In November 2010, the agent received an approval for a second indication under the trade name Xgeva for the treatment of skeletal related events (SREs) in patients with bone metastases from solid cancer tumors.  "On the heels of a modest launch for denosumab in osteoporosis, we are encouraged by several metrics from our unique data sets that indicate the drug is achieving much greater success in the oncology setting,"  said Karen Cundari, Assistant Vice President and lead healthcare analyst at ITG.  The study shows that Xgeva has already been prescribed by 13% of prostate cancer specialists in ITG's exclusive oncology panel.  By comparison, Prolia had only been prescribed by 2% of osteoporosis specialists at this point in its launch.  Furthermore, the analysis reveals that Novartis' Zometa has already forfeited measurable market share to Xgeva in the prostate cancer setting.  Despite the fact that Xgeva's cost of therapy is nearly double that of Zometa, survey respondents expressed enthusiasm for Xgeva's superior efficacy and relatively low-risk safety profile.  Weighing all of those factors, surveyed physicians estimated that Xgeva utilization will grow to represent ~39% of SRE treatments administered to prostate cancer patients in their practices.  At the same time, they anticipated that Zometa will continue to lose significant share and come to represent ~49% of SRE treatments.

As for Provenge, the study assesses the drug's performance to date as well as the future appetite for Dendreon's product.  The research indicates that Provenge has been prescribed by only 5% of specialists to date.  Moreover, nearly two-thirds (64%) of Provenge non-users indicated the reason they have not prescribed the drug is because it is still unavailable at their facility.  These findings reflect the fact that Provenge's launch has been hampered with serious supply issues, which are slated to be resolved in 2011.  Cundari noted, "Dendreon may face continued headwinds even after supply of Provenge is ramped up.  The Dendreon sales force will need to make a concerted promotional effort that focuses on clearly defining how the benefits of Provenge justify the cost."  When asked about their future plans to prescribe the drug, 65% of Provenge non-users indicated they are either unsure or do not plan to prescribe the drug in the next year.  When probed, surveyed physicians explained that Provenge's high cost and poor insurance access will be barriers to future adoption.

Event Pulse: Launches of Xgeva and Provenge includes analysis of a targeted Internet survey of 50 oncologists and 50 urologists, 10 in-depth telephone interviews with pharmacy directors at major managed care organizations, and longitudinal treatment data from a panel of 450 oncologists spanning 2005-2011.  Conducted in February to March 2011, the report provides an in-depth look at how the launches of Xgeva and Provenge will impact the treatment paradigm among competing agents in the prostate cancer market.  The study also examines the reimbursement climate for existing and anticipated prostate cancer agents.

About Event Pulse

Event Pulse is a syndicated report series that evaluates the impact of market events on physician treatment practices. These reports provide timely insights on how new products, data, and guidelines will affect current treatment algorithms, impact use of available therapies and change market dynamics.

About ITG Majestic Market Research

ITG's Majestic Market Research ("Majestic Market Research") is the primary market research offering of ITG, Inc, (NYSE: ITG), an independent agency brokerage firm founded in 1987. Since 2002, ITG Investment Research has revolutionized the research business with its differentiated research platform based upon leveraging large amounts of statistically relevant, real-time data. While traditional research is frequently based on publicly available data, anecdotal information and channel checks of limited sample sizes, the company leverages its exclusive relationships with industry data providers, unique Web harvesting technology and rigorous primary research capabilities to generate fresh insights from superior analysis of a vast array of data.

Majestic Market Research is a specialist in delivering the highest quality, healthcare market intelligence quickly -- combining survey results with empirical data to deliver innovative syndicated and custom reporting. Our cutting-edge market research capabilities enable us to provide clients with the insights and clarity they need to make informed business decisions.

To learn more about Majestic Market Research's unique healthcare research capabilities, please contact Christina Brown, Vice President of Healthcare Sales at: 646.584.6061, [email protected], or visit our website:

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