In 2024, the pharmaceutical industry is expected to face new and distinct challenges and promising opportunities.
The pharmaceutical landscape is undergoing a significant transformation marked by substantial investments, advancements in pharmaceutical technologies, the expiration of pivotal patents, burgeoning inter-organizational collaborations, and a favorable regulatory climate. These factors collectively contribute to a wave of innovation sweeping through the pharmaceutical industry, setting the stage for exciting trends and developments.
The blog delves into the twelve crucial trends that will shape the pharmaceutical industry in 2024, which will cause an advancement. The year can accept potential opportunities, face challenges, and evolve with the sector’s research and development landscape.
1.Continued dominance of small molecule drugs
Small-molecule drugs will continue to dominate the pharmaceutical market in 2024, accounting for over-global sales at 54.9%. This is due to the ease of manufacturing, formulation, and administration and the low cost compared to biologics. These small-molecule drugs are also proven to have a track record of safety and efficiency and play an innovative role in treatments for the four major fields that account for more than half of global pharma growth. These are oncology, diabetes, autoimmune, and respiratory diseases.
2.Increasing adoption of biologics
The popularity of biologics is expected to grow in the year 2024. This is because they offer more targeted and effective treatments for various diseases. The biologics are derived from living organisms and can target specific molecules or cells involved in the disease processes. This makes them more efficient and effective than traditional small-molecule drugs. The further we advance in technology and the increase in investment in R and D, we can expect to see more innovative and effective biologic products entering the market.
3.Outsourcing of drug development and manufacturing
Outsourcing of drug development and manufacturing is expected to grow in 2024 which will help in reducing costs and improve efficiency. CMOs or Contract manufacturing organizations and Contract Research Organizations or CROs are becoming increasingly popular and have complex services offering a wide range of services. These include everything from early-stage development to commercial manufacturing. It helps pharma companies focus on their core drug discovery and development competencies.
4.Growing demand for personalized medicine
With the increase in the usage of AI in Pharmaceuticals, there is expected to be a growth in demand for drug discovery, personalized medicine, and process optimization.
Precision medicine or personalized medicine is brought from the idea that everyone is unique and must be treated that way. Multiple advancements in data analysis are providing new insights into how the human body responds to drugs. Along with advanced manufacturing methods like additive manufacturing, this knowledge is bringing personalized medicine forth to the common public.
5.Increasing focus on emerging markets
There is an emerging growth in markets which is caused because of the increase in the large population, rising disposable incomes, and increasing healthcare demand. And, these three play the role of key drivers of pharmaceutical industry growth for the year 2024.
6.Increasing R&D costs
The rising research and development costs are making the development of new drugs and treatments increasingly expensive. Therefore, this will pressure pharmaceutical companies to streamline their research processes and find different ways to reduce costs in 2024. Using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning by pharma companies helps automate tasks and improve efficiency. The pharma companies can also reduce costs by collaborating with other companies and research institutions to share resources and expertise.
7.Extended Reality (XR)
The visualizations are enabled with the help of mixed reality (MR), virtual reality (VR), and augmented reality (AR) like never before. In pharmaceutical research and manufacturing pharma startups are exploring the possibilities of extended reality technologies.
Among research teams irrespective of the location, the extended reality tools facilitate data-rich and meaningful real-time interactions. There are multiple startups out there in the pharmaceutical industry turning human augmentation into a tangible possibility with the use of extended reality wearables and tools.
8.Supply chain management
Managing an easy, foolproof supply chain for pharmaceutical companies is a complex challenge involving multiple stakeholders and a wide range of products. In 2024, the investment in supply chain management must be extensive to ensure the safety and quality of their products. Pharmaceutical companies can use technologies such as blockchain to track products and ensure they are not counterfeit or tampered with.
The transforming innovations in the pharma industry are real-world data and real-world evidence (RWE). The real-world data includes a detailed study of patient health status, treatment data, and health reports that are collected routinely. As the pharma industry is a research-intensive field, it must ensure the data it uses is reliable and of real value.
The Internet of Things (IoT), sensors, and wearables are restructuring the way the pharma industry is functioning with the availability of real-world data.
10.Obtaining intellectual property
Intellectual property is critical to the success of pharmaceutical companies, as it protects their investments in research and development. However, protecting and enforcing patents can be a complex and costly process. Pharmaceutical companies must invest in robust intellectual property protection strategies to safeguard their innovations in 2024. They can also work with governments to strengthen intellectual property laws and enforcement mechanisms.
There is a drastic shift in the model of treating illnesses from managing diseases to curing diseases. The term “curative therapies” means “cell and gene therapies”. Genetically engineered viruses are the most common vectors used for gene therapy. These are complete turning points and can deal with chronic diseases or difficult-to-treat conditions by eliminating the need for long-term treatments.
12.High costs of medications
The high cost of medications or pricing pressure comes from government regulators and consumers. The regulators are concerned with the high cost of prescription drugs, while consumers are increasingly price-sensitive. Pharmaceutical companies must find ways to balance this and profit by providing affordable treatments. The strategies include value-based pricing, which links the price of a drug to its clinical value and more.
With the start of the year 2024, we are hopeful about the fact that the pharma industry stands at the threshold of significant changes driven by advancements in technology, regulatory shifts, and evolving market dynamics. They are new trends creating a sense of anticipation, dominance of small molecule drugs, a growing usage and adoption of a growing biologics, the outsourcing of drug development and manufacturing, an increasing interest in personalized medicine with the advent of AI, and a grave emphasis on emerging markets. Pharma companies are also facing the task of addressing challenges related to regulatory compliance, rising expenses in research and development, effective management of supply chains, acquisition of intellectual property, coping with the substantial costs linked to medications, and much more.