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Prolia Expected to Be a Significant Growth Driver for Amgen in 2017

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Prolia market opportunity

Amgen’s (AMGN) Prolia is currently the market leader in the underserved osteoporosis segment. The company believes that around 200 million patients in the world live with this condition. Further, only half of the osteoporosis patients in the US, Japan, and Europe are correctly diagnosed, while half of the diagnosed patients are treated for the disease.

Owing to a low rate of treatment, there were around 4.9 million people hospitalized in the US between 2000–2011 due to osteoporotic fractures. Amgen believes that postmenopausal osteoporosis (or PMO) is a significantly underserved area. Hence, there is a need to increase diagnosis rates and improve treatment methods for PMO.

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Prolia revenue trends

In 2016, Prolia reported annual revenues of around $1.6 billion, which represents year-over-year (or YoY) growth of around 24.6%.

If the drug witnesses strong revenue growth in 2017, it may have a positive impact on Amgen stock and on the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB). Amgen makes up about 9.1% of IBB’s total portfolio holdings.

Prolia has demonstrated its strong clinical profile by reducing the probability of fractures in osteoporosis patients. Further, there is sufficient long-term data to establish Prolia’s strong safety profile.

Despite competition from other bone health players such as Novartis (NVS), Merck (MRK), and Eli Lilly (LLY), Prolia is expected to witness solid growth in revenues going forward. To learn more about Prolia, please read Amgen: Exploring Opportunities in the Bone Segment.

Bone health strategy

Amgen and its partner UCB are awaiting regulatory approval for their investigational bone health drug, Evenity (romosozumab), currently under FDA review. To learn more about romosozumab, please read Can Amgen’s Romosozumab Strengthen Its Bone Health in 2017?

In the next article, we’ll study Amgen’s secondary hyperparathyroidism drugs in greater detail.

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