Metabolomics is a nascent field of science that deals with the study of metabolites produced in the body. It provides insight into the chemical fingerprints of cellular processes through the characterization of small molecules. The field of gene mutation and drug discovery s expected to have been benefited the most from this field of omics. However, along with this several other fields such as biofuels, nutrigenomics, agriculture, and food safety have also benefited from the technique.
The metabolomics techniques have developed to become a key tool to investigate several aspects of human fluids and their contents. Metabolome which refers to a complete set of small-molecule metabolites was identified and converted into one of the largest web database METLIN in 2005. By 2010, although research in metabolomics had started growing at a strong pace, the commercial aspect was facing significant technical challenges.
There are two aspects to metabolomics: Metabolite Profiling which deals with the phenotypic characterization of an organism by non-invasive means and Metabolic Profiling, which deals with the use of spectroscopy to identify metabolites. The advent of metabolite biomarkers will have profound implications on the progress of the diagnostics market in the coming years.
The market for metabolomics is constituted of three parts, namely Instrumentation; which primarily deals with Gas-Chromatography, Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS), tandem mass spectrometry and NMR spectroscopy devices. The second commercial segment deals with the sale of diagnostic kits and reagents which constitute consumables, the third commercial segment.
Diagnostics market includes emerging companies such as Metabolon, which deals in the sale of biomarkers used to detect various cancers such as prostate cancer, bladder cancer, kidney cancer among others. The company estimates a yearly scope of performing over 20 million diagnostic tests which carves a potential market of $ 2.0 billion each year. Along with this, there are several companies in the fray such as Tethys BioScience, which is in the process of commercializing a diabetes test called PreDx.
Our ongoing research estimates suggest that the metabolomics (diagnostics & tools) market is expected to be valued at around US$3.0billion in 2014 although the potential addressable market is worth over US$5.5 billion. The growth of the metabolomics market exceeds a CAGR of 50% and thus can be expected to grow exponentially in the coming years. Currently, North America and Europe constitute over 75% of the total market for metabolomics research equipment and consumables along with services.
Asia is entering this field with major investors being China and Japan. North America has the largest research pipeline with studies happening in several areas of oncology and diabetes.
Besides upcoming companies such as Metabolon and Tethys, other major players in the field are Thermo Fisher which is involved in providing software support along with research technologies such as spectroscopy technologies and Molecular Biometrics which is a supplier of proprietary bio spectroscopy technologies for metabolomics. Other players are Human Metabolome Technologies, Metabomatrix, and Genedata.
The main driver of the metabolomics market is the cost to effectiveness comparison which is much better than any other method of biomarker detection. Even with these drivers, the market faces challenges such as lack of connection between other “omics” sciences such as genomics and proteomics.
Research is still required to go a long way since an estimated 60% of molecules of unknown nature are yet to be identified. But through all these challenges, the field is garnering more attention each day and the coming years will hold a key role for metabolomics in treating dreadful diseases.
Since the diagnostics market is immature, the competitive landscape is tightly consolidated with the top 5 players accounting for 90% of the total market. However, the data and analytical tools market that accounts for approximately 75% of the market scope is highly fragmented on a global level.
The below mentioned quantitative and qualitative analysis is subject to enhancement and refinement during the course of research.
The report analyses and estimates the market by:
- Product Segment/Sub-segment Types
- Market Share Analysis – segments, players, geographies
- Geographic Analysis
- Market Segmentation
- Drivers & inhibitors in the market
- Opportunities in the market
- Pipeline developments
- Competitive landscape – recent strategic developments