Analysts suggested that an experimental cholesterol drug being developed by Sanofi and Regeneron named alirocumab could generate more than $3 billion in annual sales, as reported Yahoo!News Wednesday.
PCSK9 inhibitors such as alirocumab are considered the potentially greatest advance in the treatment of heart disease since the development of statins such as Lipitor and Zocor two decades ago.
"Physician feedback suggests high awareness amongst cardiologists and planned prescribing habits support multi-billion dollar potential for the class," remarked Deutsche Bank analysis, who projected annual sales exceeding $3 billion for the therapy, while BioMedTracker estimated sales of $3.7 billion by 2023 for the drug.
Sanofi and Regeneron are battling with Amgen to market the first PCSK9 inhibitor, while Pfizer, Eli Lilly and Roche have competing products at earlier stages of development.
Results from an ongoing Phase III trial comparing alirocumab to Merck and Co.'s Zetia could increase Sanofi's confidence in the drug, which could be launched by 2015.
Analysts believe that the experimental therapy could have a price of about $15 per day, comparable to the prices of injectable diabetes therapies such as Novo Nordisk's Victoza.