The pharmaceutical industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by the evolution of new treatment paradigms, as well as the growing importance of technologies such as pharmacogenomics, digital therapeutics, and artificial intelligence. In the last three years alone, there have been over 787,000 patents filed and granted in the pharmaceutical industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in pharma: anti-inflammatory anaestheticsBuy the report here.

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However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilizing and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

80+ innovations will shape the pharmaceutical industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the pharmaceutical industry using innovation intensity models built on over 668,000 patents, there are 80+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, engineered multispecific antibodies, tyrosine kinase inhibitors, and mutant DNA polymerases are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Phenotypic drug screening, antibody-drug conjugates, and polysaccharide-protein conjugate vaccines are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are drug delivery nanoparticles and antibody encoding polynucleotide libraries, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the pharmaceutical industry

Anti-inflammatory anaesthetics is a key innovation area in pharmaceutical industry

Local anaesthetics have potent anti-inflammatory properties, with fewer side effects compared with traditional anti-inflammatory agents of the NSAID and steroid groups.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 280+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established pharmaceutical companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of anti-inflammatory anaesthetics.

Key players in anti-inflammatory anaesthetics – a disruptive innovation in the pharmaceutical industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to anti-inflammatory anaesthetics

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Grunenthal 504 Unlock Company Profile
AbbVie 375 Unlock Company Profile
Johnson & Johnson 257 Unlock Company Profile
Sage Therapeutics 223 Unlock Company Profile
Heron Therapeutics 106 Unlock Company Profile
VYNE Therapeutics 98 Unlock Company Profile
Sanofi 94 Unlock Company Profile
F. Hoffmann-La Roche 72 Unlock Company Profile
Euro-Celtique 69 Unlock Company Profile
Purdue Pharma 67 Unlock Company Profile
Esteve Pharmaceuticals 55 Unlock Company Profile
Xenon Pharmaceuticals 54 Unlock Company Profile
Laboratory Skin Care 49 Unlock Company Profile
Pfizer 45 Unlock Company Profile
Jiangsu Hengrui Medicine 45 Unlock Company Profile
Omeros 44 Unlock Company Profile
Collegium Pharmaceutical 42 Unlock Company Profile
HRD 40 Unlock Company Profile
Novartis 39 Unlock Company Profile
Takeda Pharmaceutical 39 Unlock Company Profile
Itochu 38 Unlock Company Profile
Sorrento Therapeutics 38 Unlock Company Profile
Denali Therapeutics 38 Unlock Company Profile
Jurox 38 Unlock Company Profile
Berkshire Hathaway 38 Unlock Company Profile
Glenmark Pharmaceuticals 37 Unlock Company Profile
Marinomed Biotech 35 Unlock Company Profile
Shionogi 35 Unlock Company Profile
DURECT 35 Unlock Company Profile
GSK 35 Unlock Company Profile
AstraZeneca 33 Unlock Company Profile
OishiKoseido 33 Unlock Company Profile
Merck 32 Unlock Company Profile
Bristol-Myers Squibb 31 Unlock Company Profile
Medytox 30 Unlock Company Profile
Ipsen 28 Unlock Company Profile
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique 28 Unlock Company Profile
BenevolentAI 28 Unlock Company Profile
Innocoll 27 Unlock Company Profile
Neurotune 27 Unlock Company Profile
UCB 27 Unlock Company Profile
Action Medicines, S.L. 27 Unlock Company Profile
Vertex Pharmaceuticals 27 Unlock Company Profile
Dr. Reddy's Laboratories 25 Unlock Company Profile
Vapogenix 25 Unlock Company Profile
MediWound 24 Unlock Company Profile
Nippon Zoki Pharmaceutical 24 Unlock Company Profile
Celanese 24 Unlock Company Profile
Abbott Research 23 Unlock Company Profile
Alfasigma 23 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Grunenthal is the leading patent filer for anti-inflammatory anaesthetics. The company develops drugs for the management of pain. Its portfolio includes a wide range of medicinal products for chronic and acute pain, nociceptive and neuropathic pain. Its major products include Tramal used for the treatment of moderate to severe pain; Transtec used to treat moderate to severe cancer pain; and Vimovo used for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and ankylosing spondylitis. Headquartered in Aachen, Germany, the company distributes products and operates in Europe, Latin America and the US.

In terms of application diversity, Dr. Reddy's Laboratories is the top company, followed by Jurox and Nippon Zoki Pharmaceutical. By means of geographic reach, Xenon Pharmaceuticals holds the top position. While Laboratory Skin Care and HRD are in second and third positions, respectively.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the pharmaceutical industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Pharmaceutical.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.