Top 10 Best-Selling Cancer Drugs of 2019

The top 10-selling cancer drugs generated a combined $63.58 billion in sales in 2018, up 17.5% from $54.126 billion in 2017. Seven of this year’s top 10 showed year-over-year increases in sales, of which six enjoyed double-digit gains.

Ranking #15 through #11 among cancer best-sellers are Takeda/Johnson & Johnson’s Velcade® (bortezomib); Incyte/Novartis’ Jakafi®/Jakavi® (ruxolitinib); Genentech (Roche)’s Perjeta (pertuzumab); Merck & Co.’s Gardasil/Gardasil 9; and J&J’s Zytiga® (abiraterone acetate). The treatments generated between $2.274 billion and $3.498 billion last year.

 

Ranking #15 through #11 among cancer best-sellers are Takeda/Johnson & Johnson’s Velcade® (bortezomib); Incyte/Novartis’ Jakafi®/Jakavi® (ruxolitinib); Genentech (Roche)’s Perjeta (pertuzumab); Merck & Co.’s Gardasil/Gardasil 9; and J&J’s Zytiga® (abiraterone acetate). The treatments generated between $2.274 billion and $3.498 billion last year.

Astellas Pharma and Pfizer

10. Xtandi® (enzalutamide)

Type of Drug: Androgen receptor inhibitor
2018 Sales: $3.624 billion (¥327.8 billion [$2.925 billion Astellas + $0.699 billion Pfizer)
2017 Sales: $3.116 billion (¥282.8 billion [$2.526 billion Astellas + $0.590 billion Pfizer)
% Change: 16.3%

9. Ibrance® (palbociclib)

Pfizer

Type of Drug: Kinase inhibitor
2018 Sales: $4.118 billion 1
2017 Sales: $3.126 billion 1
% Change: 31.7%

8. Neulasta/Peglasta (pegfilgrastim)

Amgen and Kyowa Hakko Kirin

Type of Drug: Leukocyte growth factor
2018 Sales: $4.684 billion ($4.475 billion Amgen + $0.209 billion [¥23.1 billion] Kyowa Hakko Kirin)
2017 Sales: $4.716 billion ($4.534 billion Amgen + $0.182 billion [¥20.1 billion] Kyowa Hakko Kirin)
% Change: -0.7%

Pharmacyclics (AbbVie) and Johnson & Johnson (J&J)

7. Imbruvica® (ibrutinib) 

Type of Drug: Kinase inhibitor
2018 Sales: $6.205 billion ($3.590 billion Pharmacyclics [AbbVie] + $2.615 billion J&J)
2017 Sales: $4.466 billion ($2.573 billion Pharmacyclics [AbbVie] + $1.893 billion J&J)
% Change: 38.9%

6. Rituxan®/MabThera (rituximab)

Genentech (Roche) and Biogen 2

Type of Drug: CD20-directed cytolytic antibody
2018 Sales: $6.750 billion [CHF 6.752 billion] 2
2017 Sales: $7.298 billion [CHF 7.300 billion] 2
% Change: -7.5%

5. Avastin

Roche

Type of Drug: Vascular endothelial growth factor–directed antibody
2018 Sales: $6.822 billion (CHF 6.849 billion)
2017 Sales: $6.662 billion (CHF 6.688 billion)
% Change: 2.4%

4. Herceptin

Roche (Genentech)

Type of Drug: HER2/neu receptor antagonist
2018 Sales: $6.951 billion (CHF 6.982 billion)
2017 Sales: $6.983 billion (CHF 7.014 billion)
% Change: -0.5%

3. Keytruda

Merck & Co.

Type of Drug: Programmed death receptor-1 (PD-1)-blocking antibody
2018 Sales: $7.171 billion
2017 Sales: $3.809 billion
% Change: 88.3%

2. Opdivo

Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) and Ono Pharmaceutical

Type of Drug: Programmed death receptor-1 (PD-1) blocking antibody
2018 Sales: $7.570 billion ($6.735 billion BMS + $835 million [¥92.5 billion] Ono)
2017 Sales: $5.763 billion ($4.948 billion BMS + $815 million [¥90.2 billion] Ono)
% Change: 31.4%

1. Revlimid

Celgene

Type of Drug: Thalidomide analogue
2018 Sales: $9.685 billion
2017 Sales: $8.187 billion
% Change: 18.3%

References
1. Despite the year-over-year sales increase, Pfizer said international Ibrance revenues were negatively impacted by a one-time price adjustment to full-year 2017 revenues related to finalizing reimbursement agreements in certain developed Europe markets
2. Biogen receives a share of U.S. pre-tax profits on sales of Rituxan, which is marketed by Genentech (Roche). Sales figures do not include U.S. pre-tax profits generated by Biogen, since the company only discloses those profits combined with profits from Gazyva® (obinutuzumab), and does not break out each product separately. Biogen reported combined Rituxan-Gazyva pre-tax profits of $1.432 billion for 2018, and $1.316 billion for 2017.

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