Recently, Decision Resources, one of the world’s leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and health care issues, released an article stating that “the continued uptake of marketed and emerging interleukin and TNF-alpha inhibitors and a twofold increase in the penetration of biologics in the moderate-to-severe population will drive the psoriasis drug market to double from $3.4 billion in 2009 to $6.8 billion in 2019 in the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and Japan.”

The report went on to detail the main competitors in the psoriasis market which include:

• Enbrel (etanercept), a TNF-alpha inhibitor (Amgen/GlaxoSmithKline/ Pfizer/Takeda)
• Humira (adalimumab), an interleukin inhibitor (Abbott/Eisai)
• Stelara (ustekinumab), an interleukin inhibitor(Johnson & Johnson/ Centocor Ortho Biotech)
• Briakinumab, an interleukin inhibitor (Abbott)

Enbrel was the clear leader in 2009 with over $1.3 billion in sales, but it should be noted that Humira and other interleukin inhibitors are expected to provide stiff competition in 2010 and beyond. Newly USFDA-approved Stelara (approved in January 2010) is also expected to climb to the top of the ranks and cut into Enbrel’s market share as one head to head test showed Stelara to be more effective than Enbrel.

“In 2011, Humira will overtake Enbrel as the new market leader with blockbuster sales of $2.3 billion by 2019—nearly double that of Enbrel’s sales in that year,” said Decision Resources Analyst Iva Holder, Ph.D. “The interleukin inhibitor Stelara, which launched last year, will rank third in 2019, garnering approximately $970 million in sales. Additionally, briakinumab—the most promising interleukin inhibitor, is poised to compete for first-line biologic use and its sales will exceed $800 million in 2019.”

An interesting conclusion to the article stated that no oral agents were expected to have a significant impact on the psoriasis drug market in the next decade. An effective oral agent is generally thought of to be the “holy grail” in biotechnology because of the ease of use. Many notable companies will be anxious to prove the Pharmacor 2010 findings wrong with their oral medications in development for psoriasis. Pharmas such as Genzyme, Bristol-Myers Squibb and Novartis all have oral drugs in development at the moment.

A true sleeper in the industry is Cellceutix Corporation, which trades on the Bulletin Boards under the ticker CTIX. Their compound, KM-133, has displayed promising results in early research and has carries the possibility of a 505(b)(2) exemption which would move it directly into Phase II clinical trials and put Cellceutix in a prime position amongst industry giants. Destum Partners has just begun actively pursuing a developmental partner for KM-133 for Cellceutix. The Cellceutix executives believe that the combination of exemption possibility and the strong results already exhibited will be very appealing to large pharmas for development. Destum has spoken with several companies already and will be reporting on progress in the near future.

Let us hear your thoughts: Cellceutix Corp. Message Board