Unipolar Depression | Disease Landscape and Forecast | G7 | 2020

The unipolar depression market is crowded and highly genericized. The prominent use of SSRIs and, to a lesser extent, SNRIs as early-line treatments contributes to the challenges branded therapies face when entering this market. Newer-to-market brands (e.g., Lundbeck / Takeda’s Trintellix / Brintellix, Lundbeck / Otsuka Pharmaceutical’s Rexulti / Rxulti) largely compete for use in treatment-resistant depression (TRD) patients, who make up one-third of the major depressive disorder population. The most recent entrant to the depression market, Janssen’s Spravato, offers the fastest onset of therapeutic effect among the approved therapies—fulfilling a key unmet need—but its use for TRD is constrained by multiple factors. Because of remaining unmet need, physicians will continue to look to emerging therapies—many of which offer novel mechanisms of action—as potential future treatment options in this market.


  • What factors drive and constrain the use of branded antidepressants and atypical antipsychotics? What branded therapy is expected to experience the greatest commercial success during the forecast period?
  • What clinical role will Spravato (Janssen’s esketamine) play in the treatment of TRD?
  • Given the crowded, highly genericized unipolar depression market, what is the commercial potential of key emerging therapies for unipolar depression?
  • What are the greatest areas of unmet need in the treatment of unipolar depression and how are late-phase emerging therapies expected to address these unmet needs?

Markets covered: United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, Japan

Primary research: Approximately 15 country-specific interviews with thought-leading psychiatrists and PCPs / GPs; supported by survey data collected for this and other DRG research.

Epidemiology: 12-month prevalence of unipolar depression by country, segmented by MDD, minor depression, and dysthymia; diagnosed and drug-treated cases of unipolar depression; 12-month prevalence of MDD by country, segmented by chronic pain status; 12-month prevalence of MDD by country, segmented by treatment-resistant status.

Emerging therapies: Phase III/preregistration: 5 drugs. Coverage of select Phase II and Phase I products.

Market forecast features: 10-year, annualized, drug-level sales and patient share of key unipolar depression therapies from 2019-2029, segmented by brands / generics

Key companies: Allergan, AstraZeneca, Axsome Therapeutics, Fabre-Kramer, Gedeon Richter, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen, Lundbeck, Otsuka Pharmaceutical, Pfizer, Sage Therapeutics, Shionogi, Sumitomo Dainippon, Sunovion, Takeda

Key drugs: Aripiprazole, bupropion HCl SR/XR, duloxetine, escitalopram, Latuda (lurasidone), quetiapine IR/XR, Rexulti / Rxulti (brexpiprazole), Spravato (esketamine), Trintellix / Brintellix (vortioxetine), venlafaxine IR / XR, Vraylar / Reagila (cariprazine), AXS-05, gepirone ER, SAGE-217 (zuranolone)

Login to access report