Diverse First-in-Class Pipeline Shows Promise for Treatment of Negative & Cognitive Symptoms

Market Research Times / Lewes / Delaware / US

In 2013, the direct and indirect cost of schizophrenia to US society was estimated to be $155 billion. Despite this, the schizophrenia pipeline is relatively small. This is indicative of a low level of R&D funding and investment in schizophrenia, most likely due to a poor understanding of the underlying mechanisms of the disease, which hinders the development of effective pharmaceutical drugs.

There are marketed pharmaceutical products that are effective in treating the positive symptoms of schizophrenia, but none are available for the treatment of negative and cognitive symptoms. There is no single pharmacological drug that addresses all the symptoms of schizophrenia, and therefore it is likely that in the future combined treatments based on pharmacogenetics will be used to provide a tailored approach.

As such there is a strong rationale for continued R&D investment in schizophrenia therapeutics, due to the high levels of unmet need across a large population. This report assesses first-in-class innovation across the schizophrenia pipeline.

Schizophrenia - Diverse First-in-Class Pipeline Shows Promise for Treatment of Negative and Cognitive Symptoms

 

Small Pipeline for Schizophrenia with Few Signs of Innovation

The schizophrenia pipeline is relatively small, given the large patient population and well-defined unmet needs, with a total of 160 products in active development. This is indicative of a low level of R&D funding and investment, most likely due to a poor understanding of the underlying mechanisms of the disease, which acts as a strong barrier to the development of effective pharmaceutical products. 

Reflecting the situation in the market, the overwhelming majority of these products are small molecules, with a small but notable portion of the pipeline consisting of other molecule types such as  cell therapies, peptides and vaccines – none of which are currently present in the schizophrenia market. Of the 160 products in the schizophrenia pipeline, 43 are first-in-class, meaning they act on molecular targets not yet present in any market in the pharmaceutical industry. In addition, these first-in-class pipeline products act on 27 first-in-class molecular targets. 

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