The US market for media, sera and reagents used in cell culture is expected to nearly double in value to reach $1.7 billion (€1.48bn) in 2008, according to a report to be published later this year.
The market is expected to reach $915.6 million this year, with a 13.1 per cent average annual growth rate out to 2008 as the sector benefits from a revolution in cell culture techniques spearheading a shift from research to commercial scale processes, according to the report, which will be published by Business Communications Company.
"The media and sera market is changing due to the introduction of serum free and protein free media," noted BCC. It added: "R&D spending, along with increasing competition, new products, the international marketplace and a changing customer base (due to the use of serum free media) are contributing to the creation of a new kind of market in this field."
US Sales of Media, Sera and Reagents in Cell Culture, 2001-2003 and 2008 ($ Millions)
The shift from traditional serum-supplemented media to serum-free and protein-free media has several advantages, which include better definition of the composition, reduced contamination and lower cost.
Serum-free media is now routinely used in many laboratories but, while the sera market may decline, it cannot die because there are other uses for sera besides research and production; it is also used as an ingredient in several immunodiagnostic kits.
"Foetal bovine serum has created an unreliability, in terms of quantity, quality and price," according to BCC. Also regulatory agencies are putting a lot of pressure on biopharmaceutical companies in the US and Europe not to develop new protein products using animal products or serum in part due to a setback in bovine serum due to the spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). Regulatory authorities have been stricter in the selection of imported sera, thus causing delays in availability.
Growth in the reagent market is coming from the introduction of new products as the markets continue to diversify. "A lot of new biological response modifiers (growth factors, interleukins, cytokines etc) are coming to market every year, at least 10 - 12 every year," said BCC.
And with the reduced times of FDA approvals, the production segment is seeing a marked increase. The contract segment is also playing a vital role. With a lot of companies relying on contract laboratories for testing of their cell culture products, the contract segment is rising and thus increasing the expenditure on media, sera and reagents.
For further information about the report - The Dynamic Media, Sera and Reagent Market in the Cell Culture Industry (RC-083U) - please contact the publisher. It will be available in November.