Generic antiviral market poised to boom

In the next 6 years, about $9 billion in revenue will be up for grabs for generic drugmakers as patents expire on antivirals, particularly those for treating HIV. Between that and unmet needs that governments will try to fill with cheaper drugs, the generic antiviral market for HIV drugs will boom, says a new report.

That market will be supercharged by policies that favor generics from governments anxious to get cheaper treatments to infected populations. There will be both financial incentives for generics to be used and hurdles for prescribing branded drugs when generics are available, says healthcare consultant GBI Research, which, of course, wants drugmakers to buy its research. It forecasts antiviral generics will see a compound annual growth rate of 10.5% during 2010-2018.

The research claims that by 2018, generics will hold more than 29% of the global antiviral market, up from about 19% in 2010. Generic HIV antivirals, which already hold 46% of the market, are poised to explode as patents fall off such branded drugs as Abbott Laboratories' ($ABT) Kaletra in 2013 and Johnson & Johnson's ($JNJ) Prezista in 2014.

GBI points out that Teva Pharmaceutical Industries ($TEVA) has jumped into the U.S. market with a generic version of GlaxoSmithKline's ($GSK) Combivir, a combination tablet used with other drugs for treating HIV. GBI says that in 2010, Combivir generated more than half a billion dollars in sales.

- here's the release

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