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Blockbuster Ecosystems: Sustainable Development?

Executive Summary

Blockbusters-despite protests to the contrary-are still vital to the growth of Big Pharma. A therapy area, once established as a blockbuster-fertile franchise, can remain so through the patent expiration of successions of therapy classes, allowing companies that add the right investment to build and sustain new generations of blockbusters. But how to find such areas? High prices and large numbers of available patients can help a therapy area become blockbuster-fertile but are by no means the most important drivers building and sustaining blockbusters. One major prerequisite: big clinical and marketing spending by multiple companies. That means that early investors could end up disproportionately benefiting follow-on competitors.

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