July 9, 2015

Vaccine Products in Development Have Tripled over Last Decade

BOSTON – July 9, 2015 – Vaccine products in the R&D pipeline have more than tripled since 2005 and annual worldwide sales are on track to reach $40 billion by 2020, according to a recently completed study by the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development.

The number of vaccine products in clinical trials worldwide has grown dramatically – ranging from 223 to 298 annually since 2008, up from 77 in 1998, Tufts CSDD said. In addition, worldwide vaccine sales grew at an average annual rate of 11.5% between 2005 and 2014, nearly double the 6% average annual growth rate for total pharmaceutical sales.

“Vaccines have become an important business for many large pharmaceutical companies, and the vaccine market is likely to expand as demand for new vaccines grows,” said Ronald Evens adjunct research professor at Tufts CSDD and Tufts University School of Medicine and principal investigator of the study. He noted that that growth is driven by a variety of factors, ranging from efforts to reduce health care spending to increasing demand for new vaccines to treat and potentially cure cancer worldwide.

As an indicator of the growing strength of vaccine sales, Evens said five vaccine products in 2014 posted blockbuster sales of $1 billion or more. That compares to 122 drug and biotechnology product blockbusters in 2014.

The results of the new study were reported in the July/August Tufts CSDD Impact Report, which was released today. Other findings include the following:

  • More than 150 companies worldwide conducted clinical trials for vaccines in 2013, although only 18 companies had products on the U.S. market as of May 2015.
  • Vaccines constituted 28% of all biotechnology products in clinical research in 2013.
  • Clinical trials are currently being conducted on new vaccines that aim to treat and prevent more than 40 infectious diseases, including historical and emerging scourges, such as dengue fever, malaria, HIV, and Ebola.

Evens said that while vaccine developers, like makers of other pharmaceutical products, need to shorten development times, increase success rates, and contain R&D costs, they also must deal with pockets of public resistance to vaccination in industrialized countries, often based on irrational fears of vaccination side effects.

To purchase a single report or subscription, please visit the reports page.



The Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development at Tufts University provides strategic information to help drug developers, regulators, and policy makers improve the quality and efficiency of pharmaceutical development, review, and utilization. Tufts CSDD, based in Boston, conducts a wide range of in-depth analyses on pharmaceutical issues and hosts symposia, workshops, and public forums, and publishes Tufts CSDD Impact Reports, a bi-monthly newsletter providing analysis and insight into critical drug development issues.



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