Cancer immunotherapy research incorporates a variety of technological approaches, including cancer vaccines, which are designed to promote tumor-specific immune responses. Various vaccine platforms such as short peptides, full-length proteins, viruses, dendritic cells, tumor cells, tumor lysates and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) are being tested for the development of cancer vaccines.
The global market for cancer vaccines, valued at nearly $4.0 billion in 2015, is expected to decline from nearly $3.5 billion in 2016 to $3.4 billion in 2021, demonstrating a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of -0.4% (2016-2021). However, the North American market should grow from $1.7 billion in 2016 to almost $1.9 billion in 2021 at a five-year CAGR of 1.4%. The European market is expected to total $777.4 million and $847.3 million in 2016 and 2021, respectively, at a five-year CAGR of 1.7%. Emerging markets as segment, with almost $1.2 billion in sales in 2015, is expected to total $713.1 billion by 2021, a decline attributable to adverse event reports associated with Human papillomavirus vaccinations (HPV).
Cancer vaccines that currently compose a minor share of the oncology industry should become one of the most profitable businesses for the world's largest pharmaceutical companies. Government initiatives in various countries also are encouraging researchers to develop cancer immunotherapies.
"For example, the U.S. government revealed it will invest $195 million in fiscal year 2016 as part of a proposed nearly $1 billion budget initiative for the Cancer Moonshot," says BCC Research analyst Shalini Dewan. "But because the market is in its infancy, a limited number of products exist. The market also faces considerable hurdles of high manufacturing costs and competition from comparatively low cost therapies."