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Rebecca Lumley
18 May 2022

MedPharm: Increased investment driving developments in topical drugs market

We caught up with MedPharm at CPHI North America to discuss opportunities in the topical and transdermal products space. 

The topical drugs market is set to grow by $70.95 billion between 2021 and 2026, according to a recent market report from Technavio. This growth is attributed to an increase in the prevalence of skin diseases and is leading to heightened demand for the services of developers and manufacturers in the space.  

According to Lynn Allen, Vice President of Business Development at MedPharm, the topical drugs market has also benefited from increasing investment in recent years. MedPharm is a global Contract Development and Manufacturing Organisation (CDMO) that provides topical and transdermal product design, development, and manufacturing services.  

To keep up with increasing demand, the company has been expanding its North Carolina facility, where it conducts performance testing, and completed a £1.5 million refurbishment and expansion of its campus in Surrey, UK this year, increasing UK laboratory space by 35%.    

‘In 2021 we saw a lot of investment in the space. We deliver things topically which includes the skin but also includes inhalation - so nasal and lung - ophthalmic, otic, transungual, and transmucosal. We saw a lot of interesting investment in assets targeting disease indications for those delivery routes,’ Allen said. 

‘So, we’ve seen a lot of demand for our services and as we talk to other people within the industry, we see it's not just us - we're seeing a lot of that across the market.’ 

The Technavio report also notes the fragmented nature of the topical drugs market, due to the presence of large, established players such as Bayer AG and GlaxoSmithKline and smaller players like Crescita Therapeutics and Easton Pharmaceuticals. 

According to Allen, MedPharm’s ‘robust development process’ and emphasis on de-risking differentiates the company from its market rivals.  

‘We're not the kind of company that works to just shove an API into a base formulation,’ she said.  

‘What we want to do is really a de-risk programmes by doing the work up front in order to make sure we’re de-risking the process – so, choosing the right compound, choosing the right formulations, choosing the right process in order to manufacture.’ 

Allen believes this approach, which utilises the company’s performance testing models, allows MedPharm’s clients to ‘fail fast’ and avoid ineffective clinical trials, which can have significant financial implications. 

The company hopes to build connections with current and potential clients as an exhibitor at CPHI North America this year.  

Allen said: ‘We appreciate CPHI's relationship with the industry, both the European event as well as the North American event. It has always been a really good chance for us to not only connect with current companies that we're dealing with, but also see new companies.  

And the fact that it is held in Philadelphia - we find that to be a very nice opportunity for us to see a lot of our East Coast-based clients.’  

MedPharm is located at stand 622 on the show floor. 

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