Nanomedicine in industry

Although nanomedicine is considered a young field by many measures, it has already gained a significant presence in the health industry. It has been reported that by 2013, 241 companies and research institutions were working on nanomedicine products.[1]  In addition, the US patent office had granted 409 patents in nanomedicine and another 679 applications were awaiting approval.

Nanomedicine has actually been an industry success store for about two decades. Sales of Doxil, the first nanomedicine product to reach the market (after being approved by the US FDA in 1995), are expected to grow to US$6.52 billion by 2017.  Abraxane, another nanocarrier product that was approved in 2005, was initially targeted at treatment of breast cancer, but has since been approved for the treatment of lung and pancreatic cancers – 2015 sales are expected to be in the range of US$1.2 billion.

As a whole, the nanomedicine market has been estimated in 2011 at about US$70 billion and is predicted to rise to more than US$178 billion by 2019.[2-4]  Anticancer therapies account for the largest portion of market share with applications targeting treatment of the central nervous system the second largest.  With more than 200 nanomedicine products already in various stages of clinical trials[5,6], the number of commercially available nanomedicines is set to rise significantly, along with the number of successful companies in industry.


[1] Subbu, V. (2014) Has nanomedicine lived up to its promise?, Nanotechnology 25, 372501.

[2] Evers, P. (2015). Nanotechnology in Medical Applications: The Global Market - HLC069B. [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Aug. 2015].

[3] Market, N. (2012). Nanotechnology in Medical Applications: The Global Market. [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Aug. 2015].

[4], (2015). Nanomedicine Market to Reach US$177.60 billion by 2019 propelled by Technical Advancement. [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Aug. 2015].

[5] Etheridge, M. L., Campbell, S. A., Erdman, A. G., Haynes, C. L., Wolf, S. M., and McCullough, J. (2013) The big picture on nanomedicine: the state of investigational and approved nanomedicine products, Nanomedicine 9, 1-14.

[6] Min, Y., Caster, J. M., Eblan, M. J., and Wang, A. Z. (2015) Clinical Translation of Nanomedicine, Chemical Reviews.