Pharmaceutical companies are racing to develop promising new biologic treatments for a multitude of cancers, autoimmune disorders, and genetic diseases. Biologics are soon to be the majority of top 100 drugs. However, according to a Deloitte 2016 industry report, Drugs Alone Are Not the Key to Future Treatments, drugs will remain important but will represent a diminishing share of what comes together to deliver an overall outcome.
Outcomes will soon determine reimbursement and leadership positioning. And company growth will depend on innovation beyond finding new drug candidates, according to a PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) survey of international pharmaceutical executives that found a strong correlation between growth and innovation.
Consequently, companies seeking to flourish are responding by embracing disruptive technology. Partnerships with innovative wearable large volume injector manufacturers can give their products the edge with consumers and prescribing physicians seeking to improve treatment outcomes.
Industry leaders Roche/Genentech and Novartis, for example, have produced some of the most successful products of the last decade—Avastin, Rituxan, Herceptin, and Gleevec. To what do these drugs owe much of their product leadership? To the companies’ focus on patient convenience and the continual drive to improve the patient experience.
Disruptive Innovation: Critical to Enhancing the Patient Experience
Nowhere is disruptive innovation to enhance the patient experience more critical than with the large volume, viscous biologics that now comprise more than 50% of products in pharmaceutical development. For these drugs, subcutaneous delivery has been a major goal and chronic challenge—until now.
Global specialty drug maker CSL Behring sought to differentiate a large volume product in their pipeline and place the company squarely at the forefront of patient-focused biopharmaceutical companies. Patient panels sampled drug delivery options, choosing injection comfort and convenience—and the Enable Injector—as their key preferences. The companies subsequently struck a development deal after Enable’s novel technology was proven compatible with CSL’s product.
Products like those made by Enable Injections can replace costly hospital-based infusions and produce sizeable health system savings. They can also speed formulation development given delivery volume for subcutaneous injection is no longer a limitation. But most importantly, the pain- and error-minimizing technology makes it extremely easy, comfortable, and convenient for patients or caregivers to administer therapy outside the hospital, leaving patients to move about freely during treatment. Accordingly, such injectors are expected to significantly boost compliance and, as a result, impact outcomes positively.
Proactive pharmaceutical companies seeking to differentiate their drug candidates are trialing the disruptive delivery devices for delivery of large volume drugs (5 mL to 50 mL).
As well, innovative companies looking to harness their investment in injectable commercial products approaching the end of their patent life are turning to the novel delivery system—the next frontier in vastly improving the patient experience.
“Having an injector like this, opens the door to new pharmaceuticals that wouldn’t be possible without this revolutionary device,” says Gary Ansel, MD, Associate Medical Director of the OhioHealth Research and Innovation Institute in Columbus. “We’re talking potential for huge cost savings, reduced hospital stays, and increased patient compliance—all at the push of a button.”