When it comes to drug approvals, 2017 was a great year for the pharmaceutical industry. According to Reuters, the number of drugs approved in the United States was the highest number in 21 years.
In fact, the 46 novel drugs that were approved was more than double what was approved in 2016. This figure doesn’t include cell and gene therapies, such as Kymriah from Novartis and Yescarta developed by Kite Pharma.
With the 21st Century Cures Act and the FDA’s expedited programs, such as the “breakthrough therapy” designation, quicker reviews for gene and cell therapies will help push these special drugs to the market faster.
The number of drugs approved in the European Union last year spiked to 92. The previous year brought 81 new medicines to the market. Other governments, such as China, have also indicated plans to lessen the regulatory burden in order to bring drugs to patients faster. Interestingly enough, China has become the second largest pharmaceutical market, behind the United States.