History of Biotechnology - Global Trends

Global Trends

According to Burrill and Company, an industry investment bank, over $350 billion has been invested in biotech since the emergence of the industry, and global revenues rose from $23 billion in 2000 to more than $50 billion in 2005. The greatest growth has been in Latin America but all regions of the world have shown strong growth trends. By 2007 and into 2008, though, a downturn in the fortunes of biotech emerged, at least in the United Kingdom, as the result of declining investment in the face of failure of biotech pipelines to deliver and a consequent downturn in return on investment.

There has been little innovation in the traditional pharmaceutical industry over the past decade and biopharmaceuticals are now achieving the fastest rates of growth against this background, particularly in breast cancer treatment. Biopharmaceuticals typically treat sub-sets of the total population with a disease whereas traditional drugs are developed to treat the population as a whole. However, one of the great difficulties with traditional drugs are the toxic side effects the incidence of which can be unpredictable in individual patients.

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