The Artificial Pancreas: A Race To The Finish
The race to develop a fully functional artificial pancreas for patients with diabetes is entering the later stages, and the first such device could be ready for regulatory submission in the next few years. Medtronic has achieved notable success in this area to date, but positive clinical studies have put J&J in a good position as well, and the medical community is watching closely as the major developments in this groundbreaking endeavor continue to move forward.
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To stave off the sluggish growth in established markets, multinational medtechs not only are finding new business in countries with booming health care industries, but they’re also forging new ways to serve customers. Device companies now are pushing into services, such as disease management, and angling to compete more aggressively on pricing.
The market for insulin delivery devices is positioned to change significantly with several manufacturers gearing their products toward type 2 diabetics, who make up 90% to 95% of the diabetes patient pool in the US. These new, “pump-like” devices could offer the type 2 diabetes population better control in managing glucose levels, a solution the medical community has been seeking for a while.
With two new positive Phase III studies, MannKind is getting back on regulatory track, with plans for a new FDA filing of Afrezza in the fourth quarter. Still, the firm is planning more Phase IIIb/Phase IV studies to differentiate the inhaled insulin on the market.