Early demand for a recently approved migraine drug could be setting the stage for strong growth with a new class of medications.
According to one analyst at Leerink Partners, initial demand for Aimovig, which was developed by Amgen and Novartis and approved in May, is putting the drug on target to hit $40 million in sales in 2018 and then jump to $480 million next year.
The analyst wrote in a note to investors that some of the early success could be attributed to the fact that many currently receiving the treatment are enrolled in a program that gives new patients the drug for free for two months. Yet, the companies’ strategy of pricing the drug at just $6,900 a year is likely to pay off with rising prescription rates.
The success of Aimovig is not only boon to Amgen and Novartis, but could help buoy a burgeoning market for similar biologics as well. Eli Lilly and Teva Pharmaceuticals are also currently developing medications that, like Aimovig, work by targeting CGRP antibodies. Both companies expect to win approval for their drugs this year.
Despite new entries, the Leerink analyst predicted that Aimovig will be the leader in the market but that global sales for anti-CGRP antibodies could reach $4.5 billion by 2020.