Global Biotech Product Development Expected to Continue Its Multi-Decade Surge, According to the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development

BOSTON, Nov. 13, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- With more than 500 Phase III clinical trials now underway for biotech products worldwide, the multi-decade surge in new biopharmaceutical approvals is likely to continue, and even accelerate, in the decade ahead, according to a newly completed analysis by the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development.

"Robust, global R&D pipelines continue to fuel the biotech revolution that launched in the early 1980s, offering the promise of a cornucopia of novel products to treat a wide range of diseases over the next 10 years," said Ronald Evens, PharmD, FCCP, adjunct research professor at Tufts CSDD, who conducted the analysis.

He added that the world's leading pharmaceutical companies have been instrumental to the growth in biotech product development. Since 2002, pharma partnerships have been the largest funding source for biotech development, providing 44% of all biotech financing last year.

At the same time, Evens noted, biotech products have played a growing role in pharmaceutical sales, most recently accounting for 41% of annual revenue for the top 20 pharma companies.

"The biotech-pharma relationship is likely to grow, as the demand for innovative treatments to address a host of unmet medical needs expands," said Evens.

Among other findings from the analysis, summarized in the November/December Tufts CSDD Impact Report, released today, are the following:

  • Biotech products now account for more than 30% of all new U.S. drug and biologic approvals.
  • From 2007 through 2017, biotech sales as a share of all company sales have almost doubled, from 23% to 41% among the top 20 pharma companies.
  • As of August, Phase III clinical trials were underway on 532 biotech products spanning 264 indications.
  • Biotech products accounted for 31% of the 457 drugs with orphan designations that have won U.S. marketing approval since 1983, a share that is expected to grow in the medium to long term

Data for the report will be included in the Comprehensive Biotech Data Book, to be published by Tufts CSDD in Spring 2019, focusing on products, companies, R&D, regulatory issues, and sales.


Established in 1976, the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development ( is a multidisciplinary, academic research group that provides data-driven analyses and strategic insight to help developers, regulators, and policy makers improve the efficiency and productivity of pharmaceutical R&D. Tufts CSDD also offers CME-accredited professional development courses, hosts workshops and public forums, and publishes the Tufts CSDD Impact Report, a bimonthly newsletter focusing on critical drug development issues.

Contacts:Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development
 Rachel Stanton – 617-636-2170
 Business Communication Strategies
 Peter Lowy – 617-734-9980