The discovery and commercial development of antibiotics in the 20th Century changed the nature of public health management for many communicable diseases. Nearly three-quarters of a century after the discovery of the first antibiotics, we still lack effective therapies for a wide range of cancers and diseases caused by viral, protozoac, and/or parasitic infection. For example, cervical cancer represents the number one public health threat to women in India and in the broader developing world, where early screening is difficult, and there is no effective therapy currently available. Similarly, HIV/AIDS and mulit-resistant bacterial infections represent major causes of morbidity and mortality within India and globally.
There is a great need for new therapies to combat these growing public health threats and a corresponding market opportunity for Amrita’s MDT drug development:
Cancer: There are 24.6 million people living with cancer worldwide; by 2020 there may be an estimated 30 million. In the United States and other developed countries, cancer represents fully one-quarter of annual deaths. Cancer remains a leading cause of death worldwide, accounting for 7.4 million deaths in 2004 or approximately 13% of all deaths, with major impact on India and the developing world. Authorities attribute 300,000 deaths worldwide to cervical cancer, with an estimated 75,000 deaths in India alone. Overall, IMS Health projects that sales of onocology drugs may reach up to $80 billion by 2012.
HIV/AIDS: Global HIV/AIDS estimates are generally inaccurate; current guesses rest at approximately 50 million, with roughly 4 million joining the ranks annually. Approximately 1.5 million people currently receive HIV/AIDS therapies, mainly provided at low- or no-cost through public-private partnerships; industry R&D has been declining due to lack of incentives for new drug development. IMS Health estimates that global sales of HIV/AIDS therapies exceeded $12.5 billion in 2009.
Multi-Resistant Bacterial Infections: The continuing increase in resistance of bacterial resistance to traditional antibiotics has been called a pandemic without end, affecting millions of patients annually, and particularly threatening in the hospital setting where patients may already suffer from compromised immune systems. In this context, there is continuing high demand and commercial reward for development of novel antibiotics. With annual sales estimated at more than $25 billion, antibiotics sales continue to be an important therapeutic category and one where a single new successful product may generate $1 billion or more in annual sales.
For more information on investment opportunities relating to Amrita's research programs in one or more of these areas, please contact Amrita Therapeutics.