A survey of US and European gastroenterologists has shown that a novel oral drug for the treatment of moderate to severe Crohn’s disease would earn a 40% patient share.

Decision Resources analyst Benjamin Guikema said that if a more potent oral drug with fewer side effects were available, surveyed gastroenterologists indicated that they would place it ahead of budesonide and oral mesalamines.

“Gastroenterologists also indicated that they would likely prescribe the emerging drug ahead of marketed biological agents for severe patients, especially if the novel oral drug were priced at a discount to high-priced biologics,” Guikema said.

The Crohn’s disease drug market is currently dominated by oral agents such as budesonide including AstraZeneca/Prometheus‘s Entocort EC as well as oral mesalamine products such as Warner Chilcott/Giuliani‘s Asacol.

The report also indicates that despite several promising therapies in development, most will have less favourable efficacy, safety and tolerability, and/or delivery compared with Abbott/Eisai’s Humira, the current leading drug for Crohn’s.