Radiopharmaceuticals are the formulations containing radioactive substances called as radioisotopes or radiotracers. Radiopharmaceuticals are intended to administer to the patient by oral route, parenteral route or IV injections or put into the body cavity; depending on the drug being administered. Small doses of radiopharmaceuticals are often used for diagnostic purpose whereas, larger doses are used for therapeutic purpose. As a therapeutic moiety, radiopharmaceuticals can either be administered to the patient per se, such as in case of metastatic prostate cancer treatment where IV injection of Radium-223 chloride is administered to the patient, or it can be given as molecular radiotherapy or radiolabelled antibody where radiotracer is attached to the cell targeting molecule. Radiopharmaceuticals are used to treat conditions such as cancers, hyperthyroidism, dementia, epilepsy etc.
Moreover, radiopharmaceuticals serve a vast applications in diagnostics including but not limited to imaging anatomy of the organ, monitoring the function of a specific organ such as heart, liver, thyroid glands, bones etc. Diagnostic radiopharmaceuticals are largely being used in techniques such as Single-photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) and Positron Emission Tomography (PET). According to World Nuclear Association, the number of nuclear procedures performed in U.S. in 2012 were recorded as 20 million while that in Europe was 10 million and is projected to increase by 10% by 2017. Radiopharmaceuticals when used as a diagnostic agents are called as radioactive tracers, which emit the radiations from within the body which can be continuously collected externally and monitored over a period equal to shelf life of a tracer. Some of the commercially available radiopharmaceuticals include Metastron (Strontium-89), Xofigo (Radium-223), Quadramet (samarium 153), Amyvid (Fluorine-18), ProstaScint (Indium-111), Glofil-125 (Iodine-125), Cardiogen-82 (Rubidium-82), Ceretec (Technetium-99m), Zevalin (Yttrium-90) and others.
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Radiopharmaceuticals Market: Drivers and Restraints
Increasing number of nuclear procedure owing to growing prevalence of cancer, bone and heart diseases is the major driver for the growth of global radiopharmaceuticals market. According to World Nuclear Association, more than 10,000 hospitals across the world are using radioisotopes for the diagnostic purpose. Moreover, advances in nuclear imaging technology, increased usage of SPECT and PET imaging techniques, thriving demand for targeted cancer treatment are the factors fueling the growth of global market for radiopharmaceuticals over the forecast period of 2016-2026. However, side effects associated with the use of radiopharmaceuticals, stringency in regulations and high cost of a treatment are the factors hindering the growth of global radiopharmaceuticals market.
Radiopharmaceuticals Market: Segmentation
The global radiopharmaceuticals market has been classified on the basis of product type, application, end user and geography.
Based on product type, the global radiopharmaceuticals market is divided into following:
- Samarium 153
- Others (Phosphorus-32, Iron-59, Carbon-11 etc.)
Based on the application, the global radiopharmaceuticals market is divided into following:
- Therapeutic Radiopharmaceutical/Nuclear Medicines
- Others (bone and joint diseases, )
- Diagnostic Radiopharmaceuticals/ Nuclear Diagnostics
- Tumor/Cancer Imaging
- Organ Imaging
- Receptor Imaging
- Blood Volume Measurement
Based on the end user type, the global radiopharmaceuticals market is divided into following:
- Diagnostic centers
- Research institutes
Radiopharmaceuticals Market: Overview
Technetium-99 is the most widely used radiotracer in the diagnostic procedures and thus holds the maximum market share in the global radiopharmaceuticals market. According to International Atomic Energy Agency, each year more than 80% of the total nuclear diagnostic procedures performed worldwide use Technetium-99 as a radiotracer and is predicted to maintain its share over the forecast period due to abundant availability of the molybdenum-99 as a starting material. On the basis of application, diagnostic radiopharmaceuticals segment dominates the global market for radiopharmaceuticals owing to development of new and efficient techniques over the conventional diagnostic methods. In spite of comparatively less use of radiopharmaceuticals as a therapeutic agents, emergence of new effective procedures employing nuclear medicine is expected to fuel the growth of the therapeutic radiopharmaceutical application segment.
Radiopharmaceuticals Market: Regional Overview
Geographically, global radiopharmaceuticals market is classified into regions namely, North America, Latin America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Asia-Pacific, Japan and Middle East & Africa. North America holds the largest share in the global radiopharmaceuticals market owing to advancement in healthcare infrastructure, followed by Europe. APEJ market for radiopharmaceuticals is expected to get the traction during the forecast period due to expanding adoption of hospital-based cyclotron for the commercial production of radionuclides. New indications of radiopharmaceutical agents such as FDDNP, FDOPA and novel radiotracers such as FAZA are expected to be launched in the market during the forecast period which will boost the growth of global radiopharmaceuticals market.
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Radiopharmaceuticals Market: Key Players
Some of the key players in radiopharmaceuticals market include Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Eli Lilly and Company, Lantheus Medical Imaging Inc., Ampio Pharmaceuticals Inc., GE Healthcare, Piramal Imaging, Covidien Plc., Cardinal Health, Iso Tex Diagnostics, Inc., Jubilant DraxImage Inc., Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals Inc., Bracco Diagnostic Inc., Navidea Biopharmaceuticals, Nordion Inc., Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Mallinckrodt Plc., Bio-Nucleonics Inc., IBA-Molecular, Eczac?ba??-Monrol Nuclear Products, Advanced Accelerator Applications etc.