Trinity Life Sciences Evaluates Commercial Performance Over 3 Years of 53 Novel Drugs Approved in 2019

Trinity Annual Drug Index Now Available

Trinity Life Sciences, a leader in global life sciences commercialization solutions, announced the availability of its Trinity Annual Drug Index, an evaluation of the actual commercial performances over 3 years of 53 novel drugs approved in 2019.

This year’s report, the fifth in Trinity’s Drug Index series, outlines key themes and emerging trends as the life sciences industry moves towards a new world of targeted and innovative products. Scoring is based on a combination of clinical/therapeutic, commercial and R&D factors. The report also provides a deeper look into several drugs approved in 2019 with outstanding commercial performance, along with learnings from these launches.

A key finding in the report was the marked increase in the number of drugs approved within the neurology space, representing 23% of all new approvals in 2019 compared to 6% in 2018. Conversely, oncology approvals declined, representing only 21% of the approvals in 2019 compared to 25% in 2018. Neurology launches also outpaced oncology launches in 2021 net sales. Of the 11 drugs approved for Oncology indications, there was a high volume of mutant targeted therapies, antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) and novel drug targets, reflecting the general trend that successful agents in oncology are novel, targeted and can launch in multiple indications.

Products in 2019 that constituted a “first launch” for their respective companies performed poorly overall, with only 50% near commercial expectations over the first two years post-launch and 33% failing to meet commercial performance expectations altogether. None of the first launch products significantly exceeded expectations, while 33% of non-first launch products overperformed.

Despite COVID-19 being a major headwind for products approved in 2019, there was not a statistical difference in the average commercial performance relative to 2017 and 2018 or a meaningful change in the proportion of drugs that failed to meet or exceed forecast expectations over the first two years post-launch. The impact of COVID is likely to be felt more directly by products launched in 2020 and 2021.

“The findings from our latest Drug Index underscore the difficulties in ensuring commercial success for companies launching their first product,” said Leslie Orne, President and CEO of Trinity Life Sciences. “First launch companies need to begin thoughtful planning as early as possible to ensure a smoother launch process. The findings also demonstrate the need for all companies to revolutionize their launch models with a more modern, flexible and data-driven approach to overcome the challenges leaders are facing today.”

Looking ahead to the next Trinity Annual Drug Index, the 2020 launch class included a combined 59 novel drug and biological license application approvals. New approvals span a wide array of therapeutic areas, and over half of approvals received orphan drug designation. The report will also examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on drug launches, relative to analyses in pre-pandemic years.

Life sciences executives are welcome to download the Trinity Annual Drug Index by clicking here.

About Trinity Life Sciences

Trinity Life Sciences is a trusted strategic commercialization partner, providing evidence-based solutions for the life sciences industry. With over 25 years of experience, Trinity is committed to revolutionizing the commercial model by providing exceptional levels of service, powerful tools and data-driven insights. Trinity’s range of products and solutions includes industry-leading benchmarking solutions, powered by TGaS Advisors. To learn more about how Trinity is elevating life sciences and driving evidence to action, visit


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