Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the conjunctiva – the clear membrane that covers the outermost layer of an eye and the inner surface of eyelids. Conjunctivitis is segmented into three major categories: infective (viral and bacterial), allergic, and irritant (chemical). Bacterial conjunctivitis is one of the most commonly observed eye problems across all age groups, generally caused by bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus, Moraxella lacunata, Haemophilus influenza, and others (e.g. Chlamydia trachomatis, Proteus mirabilis, etc.). As reported by Healio (specialty medical news and journal publisher), approximately 5 million acute bacterial conjunctivitis cases are reported in the U.S. each year. Thus, high prevalence of bacterial conjunctivitis in the country demands effective medications, thereby driving the growth of the bacterial conjunctivitis drugs market in the U.S.However, despite the increasing incidence of bacterial conjunctivitis, the overall bacterial conjunctivitis market in the U.S. is likely to witness negative growth due to the patent expirations of major blockbuster drugs such as Vigamox, Moxeza, Zymaxid, and Besivance in the next few years.
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Rise in ophthalmic bacterial infections is increasing the demand for antibacterial drugs in the U.S. According to a clinical study conducted by the scientists Amir A. Azari and Neal P. Barney, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in 2013, bacterial conjunctivitis accounts for over 50% of the conjunctivitis cases in the U.S. It also quoted that the incidence of bacterial conjunctivitis was estimated to be 135 in 10,000 in a single study.These statistics indicate that the U.S. is witnessing high incidence of bacterial conjunctivitis, hence leading to increased demand for bacterial conjunctivitis drugs in the country.
Fluoroquinolones, aminoglycosides, macrolides and other antibacterials such as bacitracin, doxycycline, and ceftriaxone collectively form the bacterial conjunctivitis market; among which fluoroquinolones dominate the bacterial conjunctivitis drugs market in the U.S. with a share of more than 70% in 2013. Fluoroquinolones are more widely prescribed as compared to other antibiotic drug classes for the treatment of bacterial conjunctivitis across the U.S. due to their higher efficacy against antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains and broad spectrum activity. However, the segment is expected to witness a significant decline in sales in the near future -from a CAGR of 4.9% from 2012 to 2018 to a CAGR of (-8.1%) from 2018 to 2024. Burgeoning influx of generic antibacterials as well as upcoming patent expiries of leading branded formulations such as Vigamox, Zymaxid, Moxeza, and Besivance are a few major factors that would adversely affect the growth of the segment.
With the loss of patent exclusivity, generics would offer physicians a broad range of affordable medications to prescribe, thereby significantly reducing the overall size of the bacterial conjunctivitis drugs market in the U.S. Hence, the future market growth would be contingent on commercialization of novel drugs for new indications. However, it has been observed that although the incidence rate of bacterial conjunctivitis is moderate in the U.S., the risk of morbidity is less, due to which the novel product pipeline for bacterial conjunctivitis is weak/dry. At present, only a few novel compounds are under investigation in both preclinical and clinical settings for the treatment of bacterial conjunctivitis.
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The U.S. bacterial conjunctivitis drugs market displays intense competitive rivalry among existing players, as currently the market is highly fragmented comprising both large and small pharmaceutical companies. Key players profiled in this study include organizations such as Actavis plc, Akorn, Inc., Bayer AG, F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd., Merck & Co., Inc., Novartis AG, Perrigo Company plc, Pfizer, Inc., Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., and Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc.
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