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Life sciences industry set for major changes in the coming years

Fremont, CA August 30, 2016
The life sciences industry is in the throes of major changes. Starting 2016, a slew of changes are expected to alter the whole dynamics of the life sciences industry over the next 3-4 years, the basis for which has been laid now.
At close to 2 trillion USD, the global life sciences industry is a gargantuan one. The three major sectors that make it up are the pharma industry, which takes up nearly two thirds of the total market, and medical technology and biotechnology, which are second and third in the list, without too much difference between their respective shares. Medical technology made up about 20% of the market, while biotechnology came not far behind.
Geographically spread growth
The life sciences industry is poised for growth globally, but this growth is distributed over the geographical regions of the world. North America, by far the biggest market for life sciences, is set to grow till at least 2018. Even though it is set to grow at very close to a healthy five percent a year; it is not set to grow as fast as at least three markets, namely Asia, the Middle East and then, Africa. The US’ growth rate in the life sciences market is ahead of that of Western Europe and South America. The five percent growth that was registered in 2015 is set to be repeated in 2016, though.
Trends in the coming years
In the next few years, the life sciences industry is set to witness huge changes in the way it uses technology. This kind of reliance on technology has not been witnessed at any point of time in the industry in its history. These are how technological trends will impact the life sciences industry in the next few years:
In the next couple of years, digital drug launches will become the norm. Using the social media sites to launch products will become standard practice in the years to come. By 2018, it is estimated that announcements of no less than four fifths of the global pharma product launches will take place over the social media.
The life sciences industry will be overwhelmed by the social media
The social media will also power the marketing activities of existing and upcoming products. They will make up an indispensable channel of marketing for 40 out of the top 50 pharma companies, despite the lack of clear-cut regulatory guidelines to this effect from the FDA, as of now.
The spurt in wearable devices is another major trend to look out for in the coming years. It is estimated that by 2019, half of the 100 leading life sciences companies will have carried out at least one clinical trial with the subject having a wearable device on.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has initiated the ISO IDMP standards, which are aimed at facilitating the unique identification of and exchange of information about medicinal products. However, not more than a fourth of all life sciences companies selling their products to the EU will be fully compliant with the formats, elements and terminologies required from this standard, by 2019.
The emergence of the concept of global health data is sure to revolutionize the way health information from the remotest parts of the world is received and processed. Extremely accessible real world sources of global health make availability of health information much easier and faster. This trend is growing at a whopping rate of 50% per annum and is expected to grow at the same of higher rate in the years to come.
Technology everywhere
Technologies are sure to make inroads into the life sciences industry at an overwhelming speed. One can expect the advent of wearable devices, Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing, the arrival of an unforeseeably high number of health apps that are for use by the players in the industry, increased spending on healthcare and other sectors of the life sciences industry by the developing world, a spurt in the growth of biosimilars, and rise of the specialty drug market to make up some of the trends that one could get to observe in the life sciences industry in the next few years.
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