Resistance Issues and Unmet Need Drive Antibiotic Market Toward $30 Billion

NEW YORK -- The worldwide market for antibacterial drugs will grow to almost $30 billion by 2006, according to a new study released today from Kalorama Information. Antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria are challenging the industry to develop new drugs and creating sizable market potential for both large and small companies, according to the report.

World infection rates are on the rise on account of the AIDS pandemic and the effects of urbanization, globalization, and demographic shifts. In addition, troublesome antibiotic resistance is making many of the first-line treatments obsolete, adding to enormous unmet need for new, more potent drugs.

"Part of the problem is that there have been almost no truly new types of antibiotics commercialized in recent history," notes Steven Heffner, acquisitions editor at Kalorama Information. "Rather, 'new' antibiotics have mainly been modifications of the same class of compounds. And even Zyvox, the first truly new antibiotic class [oxazolidinones] to be developed in more than 30 years, induced detectable bacterial resistance within two years of its commercial release."

Antibiotic resistance and several impending big-name patent expirations are creating an increasingly competitive development environment, according to the report. Big pharma companies, small biotech concerns, and even many research institutions are in the hunt for new weapons to fight troublesome bacterial infections, with several notable successes on the horizon.

The study, The Worldwide Market for Antibacterial Drugs, represents the second volume of an ongoing study of anti-infective drug markets by Kalorama. The study discusses market size, market share, epidemiology of major infections, patent expirations and pipeline products, as well as clinical and business trends affecting the industry. The first volume covered antifungal drugs, and the third volume, due out in March, will cover antiviral medications.

Kalorama Information, an imprint of, supplies the latest in independent market research for the life sciences. is the leading provider of global market intelligence products and services.

Source: Kalorama Information