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Market Research Report

Small Molecule Drug Discovery Market - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2019 - 2024)

Published by Mordor Intelligence LLP Product code 567957
Published Content info 115 Pages
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Small Molecule Drug Discovery Market - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2019 - 2024)
Published: February 1, 2019 Content info: 115 Pages

Market Overview

The global small molecule drug discovery market was valued at USD 29,363.85 million in 2018, and is estimated to be valued at USD 46,882.22 million in 2024, witnessing a CAGR of 8.11%. The increasing applications of small molecule drugs for the treatment of chronic diseases are leading to the increased demand for these drugs in the market. Moreover, due to the aforementioned factors, small molecule drugs dominate the biologics in the current healthcare market. The preference of small molecules, along with the increasing disease complications and technological advancements, has led major players to increase their R&D expenditure, which is further acting as the major growth driver for the global small molecule drug discovery market.

The global small molecule drug discovery market is subject to impacts from political situations. The policy implemented by the government has the capability to either amplify or diminish the market.

Scope of the Report

This report estimates the global small molecule drug discovery market. It includes the detailed analysis of small molecules that are in the drug discovery phase only and does not include any other products.

Key Market Trends

Lead Optimization is Expected to hold its Highest Market Share in the Process/Phase Segment

In the process/phase segment of the market, lead optimization is believed to have the largest market size and is expected to witness a CAGR of 7.93% during the forecast period.

The process of lead optimization is achieved by modifying the selected small molecule, in order to improve efficacy and therapeutic value. Once the pharmacophore, which consists of relevant groups on a molecule that interact with a receptor and are responsible for the biological activity, is identified, it is subjected to functional group modification. Various changes are made to the initial compound and the therapeutic index is measured.

Rapid usage of in-vitro experiments, accompanied with computation procedures in early drug discovery for selection of compounds with more promising ADME, i.e., absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion, and toxicological profiles, is expected to drive the market studied.

The rise in cancer and other neglected diseases is encouraging investments in lead optimization for enhanced therapeutic value, in order to provide patients with efficient and targeted therapies.

North America Dominates the Market and is Expected to follow the Same Trend in the Forecast Period

North America currently dominates the market for small molecule drug discovery and is expected to continue its stronghold for a few more years. According to FDA, in 2016, the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) approved 22 novel drugs, either as new molecular entities (NMEs) under New Drug Applications (NDAs) or as new therapeutic biologics under Biologics License Applications (BLAs). Overall, 31,468 patients participated in these trials. This shows that the United States is focusing on R&D activities to meet the increasing demands of its citizens for better and effective drugs.

The rising focus on the R&D in the country is expected to propel the market growth in the future.

Competitive Landscape

The small molecule drug discovery market is moderately competitive and consists of several major players. In terms of market share, few of the major players currently dominate the market. However, with technological advancements and product innovations, mid-size to smaller companies are increasing their market presence by introducing new ingredients with fewer prices. Companies, like Pfizer Inc., Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, Merck & Co., Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH, and GlaxoSmithKline, hold the substantial share in the market.

Reasons to Purchase this report:

  • The market estimate (ME) sheet in Excel format
  • Report customization as per the client's requirements
  • 3 months of analyst support
Table of Contents
Product Code: 46657

Table of Contents


  • 1.1 Study Deliverables
  • 1.2 Study Assumptions
  • 1.3 Scope of the Study




  • 4.1 Market Overview
  • 4.2 Market Drivers
    • 4.2.1 Rise in Demand for Small Molecule Drugs
    • 4.2.2 Dominance of Small Molecules in the Market
    • 4.2.3 Increasing Number of Contract Organizations for R&D
    • 4.2.4 Small Molecules in Treatment of Chronic Diseases
    • 4.2.5 High R&D Expenditure in Small Molecule Drugs
  • 4.3 Market Restraints
    • 4.3.1 High Drug Development Cost
    • 4.3.2 Strict Regulations
  • 4.4 Porter's Five Forces Analysis
    • 4.4.1 Threat of New Entrants
    • 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers
    • 4.4.3 Bargaining Power of Suppliers
    • 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products
    • 4.4.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry


  • 5.1 By Therapeutic Area
    • 5.1.1 Oncology
    • 5.1.2 Central Nervous System
    • 5.1.3 Cardiovascular
    • 5.1.4 Respiratory
    • 5.1.5 Metabolic Disorders
    • 5.1.6 Gastrointestinal
    • 5.1.7 Orthopedics
    • 5.1.8 Anti-infective
    • 5.1.9 Dermatology
    • 5.1.10 Immunology
    • 5.1.11 Other Therapeutic Areas
  • 5.2 By Process/Phase
    • 5.2.1 Target Id/Validation
    • 5.2.2 Hit Generation and Selection
    • 5.2.3 Lead Identification
    • 5.2.4 Lead Optimization
  • 5.3 Geography
    • 5.3.1 North America
      • United States
      • Canada
      • Mexico
    • 5.3.2 Europe
      • Germany
      • United Kingdom
      • France
      • Italy
      • Spain
      • Rest of Europe
    • 5.3.3 Asia-Pacific
      • China
      • Japan
      • India
      • Australia
      • South Korea
      • Rest of Asia-Pacific
    • 5.3.4 Middle East & Africa
      • GCC
      • South Africa
      • Rest of Middle East & Africa
    • 5.3.5 South America
      • Brazil
      • Argentina
      • Rest of South America


  • 6.1 Company Profiles
    • 6.1.1 Pfizer Inc.
    • 6.1.2 Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
    • 6.1.3 Merck & Co.
    • 6.1.4 Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH
    • 6.1.5 GlaxoSmithKline PLC
    • 6.1.6 AstraZeneca
    • 6.1.7 Johnson & Johnson
    • 6.1.8 Gilead Sciences Inc.
    • 6.1.9 Teva Pharmaceuticals
    • 6.1.10 Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd


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