Why You Need to Start Thinking About Meaningful Differentiation Much Earlier

Posted by Emily Mandell on Mon, Jul 01, 2019

Josh Hattem co-wrote this blog post with Emily Mandell.

“That's the problem with the American dream: It makes everyone concerned for the day they're gonna be rich.”

–President Bartlett, The West Wing

Pharma companies may have a winning asset, a winning development plan and an important disease target with unmet needs, but only one product can be first to market, only one can be the most efficacious and only one will become the standard of care. If your asset is entering a disease area with similar efficacy to an established standard of care, or if your asset is one of multiple products in a class entering within one to two years of one another, it’s critical to have a clear understanding of what it will take to meaningfully differentiate, and to do this early enough—in phase I or II—so there's enough time to correct the development plan.


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The Growing Challenge of Product Differentiation

Posted by Emily Mandell on Wed, Apr 17, 2019

Joshua Hattem co-wrote this blog post with Emily Mandell.

The pharma industry faces a growing problem: The return on development investment is declining. The industry is compensating by pivoting to the next disease area (such as NASH) and technological frontiers (like cell and gene therapy). Pharma leaders may be disappointed if they believe that they can fix the problem by simply adding products to their pipeline that target these future opportunities. Take Gilead, which recently had to write down $820 million of its Kite Pharma acquisition as it cut Kite’s leading cell therapy for multiple myeloma. According to FierceBiotech, this decision to terminate the CAR-T’s clinical development “reflects the increasing competition in the anti-BCMA category.”


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First Launch Commercialization Strategy: Go It Alone or Partner?

Posted by Renuka Agarwal on Fri, Feb 01, 2019

Ben Hohn, Cody Powers and Judith Kulich co-wrote this article with Renuka Agarwal.

The 2019 JPMorgan Chase Healthcare Conference kicked off with a bang as Eli Lilly announced its acquisition of Loxo Oncology for $8 billion. Loxo, a young biotechnology company that partnered with Bayer to launch its first asset, Vitrakvi, in 2018, isn’t a unique story: In today’s environment, the number of first launches for U.S.-based companies—defined by ZS as the first marketed assets of companies that have FDA “novel” status—is rapidly increasing. There were only three first launches from U.S.-based companies in 2011 compared to an astounding 16 first launches in 2018, primarily in oncology, according to ZS research.


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Four Takeaways From the Year’s Biggest—and Rainiest—Healthcare Conference

Posted by Ann Klein on Thu, Jan 31, 2019

Every year in early January, Union Square in San Francisco transforms from a shopping mecca to a (usually rainy) gathering of leadership teams from payers, large providers, life sciences companies and tech companies across the globe. The visual is dramatic: You’ll never see as many dark suits in San Francisco than when you’re wandering around town during the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference.


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Three Takeaways for Impactful Patient Marketing From Digital Pharma East

Posted by Greg Fry on Thu, Nov 01, 2018

As a member of the patient and consumer health team at ZS, I know that patients continue to expect easier access to better content. I was eager to hear how industry leaders were innovating to exceed those heightened expectations at the recent Digital Pharma East conference, which was held Oct. 16-19 in Philadelphia. 


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