The pharmaceutical industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by the evolution of treatment paradigms, and the gravity of unmet needs, 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 Immuno-oncology in pharma: oncolytic virusesBuy the report here.

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Data Insights Immuno-oncology in pharma: oncolytic viruses

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According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 668,000 patents to analyze innovation intensity for the pharmaceutical industry, there are 80+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Oncolytic viruses is a key innovation area in immuno-oncology

Oncolytic viruses are naturally occurring or genetically modified viruses that selectively infect and replicate within cancer cells while sparing normal cells. They can directly kill cancer cells through replication-dependent lysis or stimulate an immune response against the tumor. Oncolytic viruses represent a promising approach in the field of cancer therapy, offering a targeted and potentially less toxic treatment option.

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 270+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established pharmaceutical companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of oncolytic viruses.

Key players in oncolytic viruses – 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 oncolytic viruses

Company Total patents (2021 - 2023) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Merck 240 Unlock Company Profile
C. H. Boehringer Sohn 232 Unlock Company Profile
Sanofi 123 Unlock Company Profile
E. Merck 115 Unlock Company Profile
Centre National Research Scientific 102 Unlock Company Profile
Johnson & Johnson 90 Unlock Company Profile
Cevante Animale 83 Unlock Company Profile
Precigen 78 Unlock Company Profile
GSK 76 Unlock Company Profile
Voyager Therapeutics 71 Unlock Company Profile
Genethon 68 Unlock Company Profile
Elixirgen 61 Unlock Company Profile
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique 61 Unlock Company Profile
BioMarin Pharmaceutical 60 Unlock Company Profile
F. Hoffmann-La Roche 57 Unlock Company Profile
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center 56 Unlock Company Profile
Replimune Group 55 Unlock Company Profile
Krystal Biotech 53 Unlock Company Profile
UniQure 53 Unlock Company Profile
Oncorus 53 Unlock Company Profile
Bavarian Nordic 51 Unlock Company Profile
Curevac 51 Unlock Company Profile
Compagnie Merieux Alliance 51 Unlock Company Profile
RegenxBio 49 Unlock Company Profile
US Department of Health and Human Services 49 Unlock Company Profile
Nationwide Children's Hospital 47 Unlock Company Profile
Advaxis 47 Unlock Company Profile
AstraZeneca 43 Unlock Company Profile
Sementis 40 Unlock Company Profile
Akamis Bio 40 Unlock Company Profile
Zoetis 40 Unlock Company Profile
Pfizer 39 Unlock Company Profile
Vaccinex 39 Unlock Company Profile
German Cancer Research Center 38 Unlock Company Profile
I'rom Group 38 Unlock Company Profile
Oxford BioMedica 37 Unlock Company Profile
The Charles Stark Draper Laboratory 36 Unlock Company Profile
The United States Of America 35 Unlock Company Profile
AGC 35 Unlock Company Profile
Genelux 34 Unlock Company Profile
Hookipa Pharma 34 Unlock Company Profile
EpicentRx 32 Unlock Company Profile
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia 31 Unlock Company Profile
NantWorks 30 Unlock Company Profile
Cellectis 30 Unlock Company Profile
EXUMA Biotech 30 Unlock Company Profile
Tocagen 30 Unlock Company Profile
Theravectys 30 Unlock Company Profile
Adverum Biotechnologies 29 Unlock Company Profile
Sangamo Therapeutics 28 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Merck & Co (Merck) is one of the leading patent filers in oncolytic viruses. The biopharmaceutical company is focused on the discovery, development, manufacturing and marketing of prescription medicines, biologic therapies, vaccines, and animal health products. It offers prescription products for therapy areas related to cardiovascular, cancer, immune disorders, infectious, respiratory, and diabetes. Gebasaxturev is an oncolytic virus, which is under development for the treatment of gastrointestinal tract, central nervous system, and head and neck cancer. C. H. Boehringer Sohn and Sanofi are some of the other key patent filers in oncolytic viruses.

In terms of application diversity, Vaccinex leads the pack, while EXUMA Biotech and Elixirgen stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Elixirgen held the top position, followed by Replimune Group and Curevac.

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

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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.