Updated on 2 October 2012
Antibody R&D: Alliances is the way forward
The antibody market has emerged as a hot segment at a time when pharmaceutical companies are facing a drying pipeline of products. Over 300 companies in the US are working on antibodies research and the number is set to increase in the coming years. According to analysts Frost and Sullivan, the research market of antibodies in the US alone was $672 million in 2011 and is expected to touch $775 million by 2016. The demand for antibody-based technologies and need for protein research is further expected to fuel the market.
Asia too is waking up to the call of antibodies market. While the drug pipeline of pharmaceutical companies drying up, the antibodies market in the region has received a fillip with many companies concentrating on R&D. Asian pharmaceutical companies are boosting their antibody profiles by enhancing their research capabilities and building alliances.
However, there are still very few companies in Asia capable of manufacturing antibodies on a commercial scale. Antibody manufacturing facilities require substantial capital investment and competencies and while the Asian firms have the technology, meeting international regulatory standards remains a challenge for them.
The way forward for now seems to be cooperation with some countries in the region, such as Singapore, having the expertise in R&D, while others like South Korea offering international standard manufacturing facilities. BioSpectrum explores the Asia market through the growth trends and developments in companies dealing with antibodies in the region.
Research gets a fillip
Scientists in Asia are focusing on innovation in antibodies that has put them at par with the global scientific fraternity. Recently, Australian scientists' overcame one of the most pressing problems faced by the pharmaceutical industry, which was of creating antibodies that are stable enough to meet stringent requirements necessary for production in large quantities and for long-term storage.