The Future of Monitoring Drug Therapy

Focusing on patient-experience and clinician-needs for therapy monitoring will help a drug’s marketability.

Monitoring drug activity markers during therapy comes with the need to establish when, where, how and what to test. In turn, this throws up several concerns and variables for clinicians and patients relating to time, costs, anxiety, delivery of results and so on.

So, are there drug monitoring methods that can address patient anxiety and help reduce hospital or medical centre visits while also offering a more appealing solution to tight healthcare budgets and reduce frontline staff workload?

The future of monitoring drug therapy could, therefore, lie with a device that can test human-response to a biosimilar or therapeutic in a straightforward testing scenario and produce real-time data to enable rapid analysis and guidance of patient therapy pathways.

The answer

Companion and complementary lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) near-patient tests are being utilised extensively across regulated and less-regulated industries for the rapid production of qualitative, semi- and fully-quantitative results: in fact, the lateral flow market is expected to grow by a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 8.2% by 2022.

The technology is favoured for its ease of use, cost-effectiveness and the ability to be configured to detect a multitude of markers in various samples, and in a variety of near-patient, home, over the counter and clinical testing scenarios. Also, utilising LFIAs with a smartphone or desktop reader data solution is revolutionising how healthcare providers assess, diagnose and monitor disease status: these data solutions are creating value for all stakeholders via the production of real-time data.

One example of lateral flow use in the Pharmaceutical Industry is a test for the quantitative determination of trough levels of adalimumab in serum. Another example is the development of an LFIA for authenticating dihydroartemisinin and piperaquine, two drugs used in artemisinin-based combination therapy.

Personalised medicine and patient experience

The bespoke nature of a personalised medicine approach inevitably requires regularly monitoring a patient’s response to therapy. So, access to and analysis of a variety of targeted and patient-centric real-time data sets is crucial for allowing a clinician to offer guidance and react to drug marker activity promptly.

In doing so, the near-patient test approach helps with improving patient-experience because results are delivered quicker following a simple testing process. In turn, this can address patient anxiety.

Also, the benefits for clinicians and drug companies is that recording patient outcomes and drug performance is possible with electronic patient-reported outcome (ePRO) system built into a lateral flow Smartphone App or reader. The ability to track the use and success of a drug means that drugs can evolve and be tailored to meet the needs of the patients.

The future

Pharmaceutical market revenue grew from $390.20bn to over $1,200bn between 2001 and 2018. New drugs, ageing and growing populations are some of the market drivers. The increased market competition, especially with off-patent products, contributes to the Pharmaceutical industry looking to disrupt and innovate to deliver ground-breaking drugs that stand out in the crowd.

The main aims have to be improving patient experience and appealing to how healthcare providers can deliver a service that reduces cost and workload constraints.

Policy and decision-makers are more likely to utilise drugs if the complementary marker monitoring methods are less invasive, produce results rapidly, can be used at home or in a clinic and data can be shared with specialists for analysis instantly via securely connected Apps.

Abingdon Health, a specialist lateral flow near-patient tests manufacturer, will be attending the Festival of Biologics (15-17 Oct 2019) in Basel. Fill out the enquiry form attached to this page to arrange a meet with their Business Development Team to see how near-patient tests could benefit the monitoring of drug therapy.

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