The global multiple sclerosis therapeutics market was valued at US$ 19.6 billion in 2016 and is expected to witness a robust CAGR of 2.5% over the forecast period (2017 – 2025).

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disabling autoimmune disease affecting the brain and the spinal cord, eventually causing nerve deterioration or permanent damage. The types of MS include relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), primary progressive MS (PPMS) and secondary progressive MS (SPMS). RPMS is the most common type characterized by defined attacks with increasing neurological symptoms, PPMS is the rare form characterized by gradual progression of disease, whereas SPMS is commonly identified in people living with relapsed-remitting MS. The most common symptoms of the disease include partial or complete vision loss, prolonged vision loss, lack of coordination and slurred speech.

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A combination of genetic and environmental factors is responsible for the occurrence of the condition. According to a study by International Progressive Alliance, 2013, MS is two to three times more common in women than in men, suggesting that hormones play a significant role in determining susceptibility to the disease.

Increasing prevalence of multiple sclerosis to augment market growth

Multiple sclerosis is a widespread disabling neurological condition, mostly diagnosed in people in the age group 20–50 years. According to the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, 2017, this autoimmune condition affects 2.5 million people with the global incidence of around 7 cases per 100,000 people per year. The study also states that prevalence rates varies between ethnic and geographical latitudes, ranging from 50 to 120 people per 100,000 population. North America dominates the multiple sclerosis therapeutics market owing to the high prevalence of the condition and the rising economic burden of the disease leading to the adoption of novel therapeutics. According to the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, 2015, an estimated 400,000 people live with the disease in U.S., and about 200 new cases are diagnosed every week. According to a survey by Healthline Media, 2015, multiple sclerosis ranks second after congestive heart failure with direct and indirect health care costs ranging from US$ 8,528 to US$ 54,244 per patient per year. Higher therapy cost is restraining the growth of the multiple sclerosis therapeutics market.

Intensive R&D programs undertaken by organizations to accelerate the market growth     

Various organizations such as National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National MS Society, Parkinson’s Action Network are undertaking extensive efforts to create novel therapies for MS, contributing to be a vital factor driving the growth of global multiple sclerosis therapeutics market. For instance, the scientists at Multiple Sclerosis International Federation are undertaking research to understand, manage and treat the disease and are currently undertaking clinical trials to investigate the potential of stem cell therapies including mesenchymal stem cell (MSCs), hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and neural stem cells (NSCs). Also, in 2013, the Progressive MS Alliance was established to specifically research and develop more treatment options for people with the progressive forms of MS which currently has a total of 20 projects with researchers based in nine countries. Additionally, in 2015, the MS Society of Canada and the Canadian Institute of Health Research funded a new research to the University of Alberta to examine novel therapeutic strategy to reduce inflammation in the brain, a key factor contributing to the muscle disability associated with multiple sclerosis.

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The major players operating in the global multiple sclerosis therapeutics market include Novartis AG, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Sanofi S.A., Bayer AG, Pfizer, Inc., Biogen Idec, Merck & Co., Inc., and AbbVie, Inc.

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