The rise in aging population on a global scale with a decrease in the supply of the Tc-99 isotope has led to commotion in the radiopharmaceuticals market. The large number of nuclear reactors shutting down for maintenance and leakage problems has led to a decrease in the global supply of Mo-99. Additionally, demand has also increased from emerging markets like India and China due to a rise in healthcare awareness and disposable incomes. This has led to an enormous shortage of Mo-99, which is a precursor of Tc-99, used almost 90% of the times in nuclear imaging. This crisis has led to long waiting lists of patients to get these tests done, with some opting for other technologies for their diagnosis.
Radiopharmaceuticals imply the usage of radiation for non-invasive treatment and diagnosis of various diseases. Utilization of these molecules for medical purposes in PET and SPECT imaging has changed the entire algorithm of disease diagnosis. With rise in the aging population globally coupled with increasing rate of chronic cardiovascular, oncology and neurology diseases, there is tremendous growth potential in this market, especially in developing nations. Similarly, the use of radiolabeled isotopes with peptides and monoclonal antibodies has opened new boulevards for the growth of the global radiopharmaceuticals market. Many radiopharmaceuticals use technetium-99m (Tc-99m) that has many useful properties of gamma-emitting tracer nuclide.
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Radiopharmaceuticals, also known as medicinal radiocompounds, are medical formulations that contain radioisotopes, which are radioactive materials. These formulations are administered to diagnose as well as to treat cancer in humans. After administration, radiopharmaceuticals emit radiation in the form of alpha and beta particles to target the affected areas. These drugs are mostly used in small portions for imaging tests; however, heavy doses are given for the treatment of cancer.
Rising Cases of Cancer to Increase Adoption of Radiopharmaceuticals Due to Need for Organ Target Remedy
The extensive preclinical and clinical research being conducted worldwide is impelling the adoption of radiopharmaceuticals in targeted therapy. With the implementation of radiopharmaceuticals, physicians can now target specific organs and tissues to treat anomalies the metabolism of the targeted organs. Radiopharmaceuticals are also used for cancer diagnosis and treatment. Due to a spike in the number of cancer cases reported worldwide, the global radiopharmaceuticals market is expected to witness healthy growth in the upcoming years.
Moreover, radiopharmaceutical therapy enables easy location of tumors and helps monitoring its treatment. It has also facilitated high dosage of drug delivery making hospital stays shorter, thus making nuclear therapies and other cancer therapies less expensive. Nuclear imaging also helps to cut down the various scans that patients need to go through during diagnostic procedures. Thus, the preferred adoption of disease target therapy is anticipated to drive the demand for radiopharmaceuticals.
Stringent Regulations Regarding Production, Storage, and Usage to Hinder Adoption of Radiopharmaceuticals
Radiopharmaceuticals comprise radioisotopes that carry concerns associated with radiation, making both patients and medical practitioners wary about their usage. This factor is likely to affect the adoption of radiopharmaceuticals in hospitals and healthcare organizations. The regulatory guidelines regarding the storage, transport, and production of the nuclear molecules are extremely strict and are regulated by rigid processes for the FDA to give its approval. Moreover, concerns associated with radiopharmaceutical overdose are also a major factor responsible for curtailing the adoption for radiopharmaceuticals.
Emerging Economies to Augment Demand for Radiopharmaceuticals due to Need for Accurate Diagnosis and Treatment
Increasing awareness regarding chronic diseases and their treatment has augmented the demand for radiopharmaceutical diagnosis and treatment. Especially for oncology and cardiovascular diseases, people and doctors are preferring nuclear medicines and radio therapies. Moreover, with the increase in the geriatric population worldwide, the cases of cardiovascular, oncological, and neurological diseases are expected to grow, in turn driving the demand for radiopharmaceutical diagnosis and treatments. Countries such as India, China, Brazil, and Mexico are projected to create huge growth opportunities for the radiopharmaceuticals market owing to the rise in their disposable incomes.
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Due to the highly fragmented nature of the market for radiopharmaceuticals, the leading global healthcare companies are focused on offering a wide range of diagnostic and therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals to boost their earnings, reports Transparency Market Research (TMR) in a new study. The leading companies in the global radiopharmaceuticals market are Covidien, followed by Lantheus Medical Imaging, IBA Group, and Positron Corporation. They held approximately19.4% of the total market revenue as of 2011.
Thus, the global radiopharmaceuticals market is projected to grow at a high CAGR of 18.3 % to comprise a market worth US$12.2 bn by the end of 2018. The global market was valued at US$7.3 bn in 2015. North America is expected to lead the global radiopharmaceuticals market with a market revenue of US$5,631.6mn in 2018, followed by Asia, Europe and Rest of the World. Strontium/Rubidium Generators device segment is likely to maintain its lead in the global radiopharmaceuticals market with an overall global share of 40.2% by the end of 2018.