Asthma is a chronic disease of airways of the lungs and characterized by various symptoms such as bronchospasm, and pulmonary airway obstructions. The symptoms of asthma include coughing, chest tightness, wheezing, and breath shortness. Asthma is considered to be caused by a combination of environmental factors and genetic factors. The few environmental factors include exposure to allergens and air pollution. The symptoms can be prevented by avoiding exposure to allergens and irritants. In asthma, the pulmonary airway muscles get swollen, which in turn cause symptoms leading to bronchospasm and airway obstruction. Some healthy people can develop asthma symptoms during physical activity or exercise. This condition is called exercise-induced asthma (EIA).
Patients with family history of asthma and allergies are more prone to developing asthma. It has been proved that there is no cure for asthma, but it can be controlled by early and effective asthma treatment. The medications in treatment of asthma includes corticosteroids, long acting beta-agonists (LABA), anti-inflammatory agents, and leukotriene modifiers. Asthma patients are at great risk of developing infections such as pneumonia and influenza and hence are vaccinated annually. Asthma mimicking symptoms have been found in a host of diseases in children. Hence, diagnosis and treatment of asthma in children has remained a challenge. Asthma-related fatalities in children are mostly preventable through proper education and awareness and timely treatment. Hence, spreading awareness about treating asthma in children presents an opportunity for asthma drug manufacturers.
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Asthma and COPD are a major burden on the economy of a nation, especially in the U.S. and China due to high incidence of these diseases as well as rise in the number of smokers. This has fueled government initiatives to educate the people regarding awareness about asthma, and their management as well as funding by various government and non-government agencies. Usage of biologics in asthma is a relatively new treatment phenomenon; however, noteworthy advances have been made, leading to effective treatment for select patients, particularly those with severe disease symptoms. Ongoing development of new biologics such as Benralizumab by
AstraZeneca and Lebrikizumab by Roche is set to provide the impetus to the growth of the global asthma therapeutics market. Moreover, the FDA approval for GSK’s Mepolizumab in November 2015 as an add-on maintenance treatment of patients with severe asthma aged 12 years and older is likely to drive the market during the forecast period. A report by the American Lung Association in 2014 indicated that nearly 47% of the U.S. citizens live in counties with frequently unhealthy levels of either ozone or particulate pollution. Hence, rise in environmental triggers is anticipated to increase demand for asthma therapeutics during the forecast period. Rapid urbanization, air pollution, change in lifestyle, and rise in smoking population has resulted in higher occurrence of asthma symptoms in urban regions of the world, thereby fueling demand for asthma therapeutics.
The global asthma therapeutics market has been segmented based on drug class and region. In terms of drug class, the asthma therapeutics market has been categorized into bronchodilators, anti-inflammatory agents, monoclonal antibodies, and combination drugs. The combination drugs segment is projected to account for the largest share during the forecast period. Large share of this drug class is attributed to preference of combination therapies for prescription by doctors and launch of new triple combination therapies during the forecast period. Availability of popular and preferred generics such as salbutamol is attributed to the second largest share of the bronchodilators segment. New launch of anti-inflammatory agents, especially in China, is considered to support the growth of the global asthma therapeutics market.
In terms of region, the global asthma therapeutics market has been segmented into five key regions: Asia Pacific, North America, Europe, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. North America is expected to dominate the market due to greater awareness and higher prices of asthma drugs. Asia Pacific is anticipated to hold the second largest share due to high prevalence of asthma in countries such as China and India. China is estimated to account for the largest share of the asthma therapeutics market in Asia Pacific owing to factors such as improvement in diagnosis rate, rapidly aging population, increase in smokers, and high levels of pollution. Major players in the global asthma therapeutics market include Astrazeneca plc, Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH, F Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., GlaxoSmithKline plc, Merck & Co. Inc., and Novartis AG.
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