Sulfonamides are organic sulfur compounds that contain the radical SO2NH2 (the amide of sulfonic acid), which are also known as sulfa drugs or sulpha drugs. These are first anti-microbial drugs developed to treat bacterial infections in humans and animals. Sulfonamides interfere in folic acid synthesis process in bacterial cell by competitive inhibition of dihydropteroate synthetase (DHPS) enzyme competing with para amino benzoic acid (PABA). Folic acid is a precursor of ribonucleic acid (RNA) and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) formation in bacterial cell. Sulfonamides limits the growth of bacteria and thus sulfonamides act as bacteriostatic agents. A few sulfonamides are highly water-soluble such as sulfisoxazole (sulfafurazole) and sulfasomidine, which are rapidly excreted through the urinary tract (more than 90% in 24 hr) mostly in an unchanged drug form; due to this pharmacokinetic property these sulfonamides are primarily used to treat urinary tract infections (UTI’s). In addition, some of the sulfonamide derivatives, such as sulfaguanidine, are insoluble in nature thus they are not absorbed from the gastro intestinal (GI) tract (less than 5%), therefore, these sulphonamides are used for treatment of ulcerative colitis. Bayer AG was the first company who started experimenting with Prontosil in 1932. Many people are allergic to sulfa drugs and thus sulfonamides are prescribed with caution. Sulfonamides have potential to cause fatal side effects including urinary tract disorders, haemopoietic disorders, hyper sensitivity reactions and porphyria. Most serious side effects include toxic epidermal necrosis, hemolytic anemia, agranulocytosis, fulminant hepatic necrosis, thrombocytopenia and Stevens Johnson syndrome.
Based on type of administration, global sulfonamide market is classified as follows:
- Orally Absorbable Sulfonamide
- Short Acting (sulafadiazine, sulfacytine, sulfamethizole, sulfisoxazole)
- Intermediate Acting (sulfamethoxazole, sulfmoxole)
- Long Acting (sulfadoxine, sulfamethopyrazine)
- Orally Non Absorbable Sulfonamide (sulfasalzine, osalazine)
- Orally Absorbable Sulfonamide
- Topical Agents (Silver sulfadiazine, sulfacetamide, mafenide)
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Based on type of therapeutic use, global sulfonamide market is classified as follows:
- Skin Infections
- Gastro Intestinal Tract (GIT) Infection
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Infection
- Respiratory Tract Infection (RTI)
- Bowel Disinfections
Increasing prevalence of chronic diseases worldwide and the substantial availability of various sulfonamide drug formulations at reasonable price to meet the ever-growing demand are the major factors contributing to the growth of the global sulfonamides market. In addition, increasing R&D activities in pharmaceutical companies is resulting in novel and improved classes of sulfonamides with improved therapeutic activity is another major driver, fueling the global sulfonamides market growth over the forecast period. However, increasing side effects associated with the use of sulfa drugs such as urinary tract disorders, kernicterus and hypersensitivity and increasing use of broad spectrum antibiotics with lesser side effects such as quinolones, macrolides are expected to restrain the growth of global sulfonamides market.
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Geographically global sulfonamides market has been segmented into North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia-Pacific & Japan, Middle East Africa regions. North America region has been estimated as most dominant region in the global sulfonamides market owing to presence of harmonized regulatory structure, high rates of awareness regarding sulpha drugs and its therapeutic uses, and highly developed healthcare infrastructure. Asia-Pacific & Japan is a lucrative market for global sulfonamides. Countries in the Asia Pacific regions include, greater China and India together account for largest population pool in the world and thereby have large pool of geriatric population in addition to rapidly increasing medical tourism industry and increasing healthcare spending are some of the factors that are expected to fuel the growth of sulfonamides market in the region.
Some of the key companies contributing to global sulfonamides market are Abbott Laboratories, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Bayer AG, GlaxoSmithKline plc, King Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Novartis International AG, Pfizer, Inc., Par Pharmaceutical, Inc., Roche Holding AG, Sanofi Aventis, Stiefel Laboratories, Inc., and Teva Pharmaceuticals,.