This report, DNA Sequencing Markets (Next-Generation Systems, Capillary Systems, Consumables, Services), represents the third time Kalorama has detailed the market for DNA sequencing systems, as well as consumables used in sequencing and sequencing services. Much has changed since the last Kalorama edition of this report. More companies are offering sequencing services. The market was moving in a relatively linear manner for about two years in terms of competition, with no disruptive technologies or business models introduced. After a period of relative stability, the market has seen major developments.
The market continues to fragment as well as experience rapid expansion into new industry segments, more types and sizes of labs, and broader regional adoption. As new technologies are introduced, some will out-compete existing instruments and some will complement them. There is the potential for disruptive technologies, but the market has become slightly less vulnerable or volatile as it has shaken out. The continuously decreasing cost of sequencing, along with the rapid scientific advances it enables, is expected to maintain the steady growth in the near term. Some patterns have been stabilizing in recent years. The report uses primary and secondary research to present market watchers with an assessment of the marketplace in 2012. As part of its coverage, the report profiles the following companies:
Illumina has maintained its position with the largest market share, Life Technologies has experienced major success with its desktop NGS sales since their introduction and began shipping its Ion Proton system, obtained through its acquisition of Ion Torrent. The lower tier companies have been struggling but still surviving.
As the report details, the science is constantly evolving, and trends could work against DNA sequencers for some reason. Microarrays are still more cost-effective for GWAS, but given the trends in the science and the sequencing costs, it seems inevitable that will change. Further complicating things, somatic mutations, viral genome insertions, and epigenetic changes continue throughout life. The competition has been brutal as systems are constantly improved and new products are appearing with increasing frequency. Longer-term, new segments in diagnostics and industry are likely to open up further. The pharmaceutical industry is likely to be a growing segment, due to personalized medicine and other genomics-related projects.
It is the beginning of a revolutionary time for the life sciences. Pricing changes, purchases by first-time users. Consortia, initiatives, a Groups have been organizing to sequence hundreds or thousands of individuals, species, tumors and the like in a short period of time – the 1,000 Genomes Project, the 1,001 Arabidopsis Project, and many others, many of which are covered in the Trends section of the report. Longer-term, questions still remain for broad areas that are seen as large opportunities, such as disease prevention and diagnostics.
The idea of a patient’s DNA being routinely tested by a next-generation sequencer to help a doctor make a diagnosis may seem a bit futuristic right now. But sequencers are expected to see usage in at least five clinical areas over the next several years. At the same time, the healthcare market research publisher warns there are unpredictable variables which will affect the timing for each clinical application, including science, regulation and economics, not to mention the strengths and weaknesses of different sequencing technologies. According to Kalorama Information, these areas include: cancer diagnostics and treatment, HLA/ MHC typing, neonatal and prenatal testing, pathogen detection and pharmacogenetics.
Kalorama notes these areas are progressing gradually, due to the regulatory process, the complexity of the science, and the medical community's cautious approach with new tests. Eventually, the technology is expected to gain significant momentum in healthcare, possibly more rapidly in Europe's easier regulatory environment, as the complex issues are addressed and the individual systems become proven in their applications.
Kalorama suggests that different areas can have different requirements in terms of read length, accuracy, coverage, throughput, run time, sample size and other features, which may result in niches. For example, cancer applications might have specific needs for higher accuracy/ coverage, longer read length, and/ or single cell capability due to the large variety of cancers, the large genetic aberrations, and the heterogeneity of the tissue often involved, respectively. Over time, medical discoveries a long with technological advances in hardware, software, and reagents will continue to change this landscape. Possible clinical sequencing is one of the many trends discussed in this report.
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