Category Archives: whatsnew

Rare cancers prominent ahead of the conference season

Rare cancers feature more prominently at this year’s conference season, and ASCO has named “Progress in Treating Rare Cancers” as their advance of the year. We are especially poised to gauge the reactions of oncologists to the new developments in rare cancers and understanding standard treatment practices if they exist in these challenging diseases. Helping clients to better understand rare cancer market dynamics and particularly conference research is core to our offering.

The recognition of rare cancers by ASCO also resonates with our experience in delivering precision insights to our clients. We have observed an increased interest through our work in these cancers and believe that advancements in areas such as precision medicine are redefining what makes specific cancers rare or common. Together with Biomarkers (click here for Biomarkers article), oncologists have more and new tools at their disposal as sadly the treatment success of rare cancers often lacks behind more common cancers.

At MDoutlook we help clients to overcome these uncertainties in knowledge through access to the world’s largest community of treaters and experts in oncology. Over the past years, our precision intelligence has successfully informed commercialization strategies of numerous compounds at different stages in the product lifecycle.Many of these projects successfully delivered actionable results through our agile ONCpulseTM service and have included examples such as:

  • A recent rush project for a client who needed us to interview over 30 oncologists specializing in a rare Head & Neck cancer area with specific focus on the second line treatment to gain rapid time-sensitive knowledge for their business
  • For another client, we successfully engaged 10 melanoma experts to understand the current diagnosis and management of uveal melanoma, and how to better organize their pivotal clinical trial.

We are in a unique position to reach over 120,000MDoutlook Cancer Treater Universe cancer treaters and experts globally and improve your commercial strategy or simply provide a deeper understanding of rare cancers. Are you interested in similar insights? We invite you to set-up a meeting with us to introduce you to our offering.

We will be at the ASCO annual meeting (May 31 – June 4) in Chicago and look forward to welcoming you there. If you are unable to meet at ASCO, we will be delighted to meet you at the European Hematology Association annual meeting (June 13 – 17) in Amsterdam.

For further discussion or to arrange a meeting at your convenience, please contact [email protected] or call +1 404.496.4136.

 

Join our fast growing team

MDoutlook is continuing its fast growth path. To support our growth, and overall client services and experience, we are keen to add a Manager, Strategic Development to our team at our headquarters in greater Atlanta.

Playing a vital supportive role initially within our business, we look to expand the role quickly to take on greater responsibility within our strategic development team and be exposed to working across our business and with clients. The ideal candidate will be dynamic, energetic and hungry for success. Learn more about the Manager Strategic Development May 2019 here.

If you are interested and qualify for this exciting and demanding position in a great work environment, submit your resume and cover letter directly to our Human Resources group. Solicitation by recruiters will not be considered.

Biomarkers are valued but 1 in 3 oncologists want improvement

Biomarkers are embraced by oncologists as an important tool in their arsenal to treat cancer. They enable a more personalized approach to treatment by identifying patients who are likely to respond to specific immunotherapies and yet oncologists want pharma to do more.

In our 2019 Leadership study, we asked oncologists to reveal their most wanted areas for improvement in ImmunoOncology (IO) where pharma companies should focus their efforts. Their priority list revealed, 1 in 3 oncologists wanted better patient selection through biomarkers. This was among the top 3 priorities with financial impact and access to IO therapies. Our analysis revealed that 35% of European based oncologists want pharma to improve biomarkers compared to 29% of US based colleagues.

Oncologists want to improve patient selection through biomarkers

Click on image to enlarge

While IO therapies can offer tremendous improvement for patients, their response rate to a specific tumor can be as low as 20-30%. The individual gene activity within a cancer is an important cause underlying these varied responses. Certain genes in progressing tumors are activated by immunotherapy and this activity can dampen the immune cell response. We are now seeing combination therapies (using two different IO therapies) entering clinical practice with leading oncologists, and genetic profiling will become even more important in aiding the usage of combining different IO therapies. Oncologist intent to utilize and actual usage of genetic profiling is corroborated in many onco-diagnostics focused MDoutlook research.

Given the benefits of genomic profiling, the MDoutlook team is not surprised that specialized companies such as Foundation Medicine (FMI) have attracted the attention of oncology heavy weights such as Roche. In 2018, Roche completed its acquisition of FMI and is now using their technology to identify molecular alterations in a patient’s cancer. In patients with a high level of mutations, they may only need one IO drug while those with lower levels get a combination therapy. We have extensively studied the area of companion diagnostics and expect more integration beyond the ubiquitous licensing arrangements.

These improved predictions can also help oncologists to adjust their treatment approach and ultimately improve outcomes for patients. Based on late 2018 research with leading oncologists, we expect significant research and developments with respect to combining immune-oncology drugs in relevant patients to boost overall and continued response. Biomarkers are highly valued by oncologists and together with clinical factors (overall survival, quality of life), label and availability of biomarkers have the greatest impact on IO treatment selection.

Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

This showcases an opportunity for pharma and represents one of many areas where MDoutlook offer significant research experience through targeted conference research and use of ONCpulse in accessing the world’s largest community of oncologists and experts.

As a trusted partner in oncology, MDoutlook is uniquely placed to help you with precision intelligence and ThoughtLeader engagement ahead of the conference season. Let’s take your next step together.

We look forward to meeting you at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting (May 31 – June 4) in Chicago and the European Hematology Association (EHA) annual meeting (June 13 – 17) in Amsterdam.

For further discussion or to arrange a meeting, please contact [email protected] or call +1 404.496.4136.

If you wish to be included in the distribution of the 2019 Leadership study, please click here.

Oncologists have no clear leader in pharma engagement solutions

Oncologists have no clear leader when asked about the supportive services and tools provided to them by pharmaceutical companies. Our 2019 Leadership study in ImmunoOncology (IO) explored oncologists’ views across multiple engagement channels ranging from digital support solutions (e.g. apps) to more traditional activities such as educational learning.

HealthCare Provider (HCP) engagement profits from activities that are collaborative in their nature. Providing educational support to both staff and oncologists was appreciated by the surveyed oncologists and contributes to their perception of corporate leadership.

While there was no overall leader in HCP engagement, BMS, Merck and Roche formed the top three companies in our survey, yet collectively not even reaching the 50% mark of all responses.

Oncologists have no clear leader in professional solutions

Click to enlarge image

Similar to our findings in patient support programs, over a quarter of oncologists selected “None” tying it in pole position with BMS (26%). This suggests poor awareness, choice or possibly some dissatisfaction with HCP engagement activities offered by pharmaceutical companies.

To be successful, firms need to provide differentiated solutions that are pertinent to oncologists, offering value and optimization in their work with patients.

Utilizing multiple activities to support the varying needs of oncologists can increase customer interactions and these can be tailored using specialized functions such as medical science liaison (MSL). Given growth of different treatment options in oncology, MSLs are viewed favorably as a trusted resource for unbiased, non-promotional information about treatments.

Our latest findings are a timely input as most companies start their brand planning activities across marketing, medical affairs and other teams to drive successful leadership in the eyes of oncologists.

About the study

The 2019 Leadership Study was conducted with 100 oncologists across US and EU using MDoutlook’s proprietary ONCpulse™ service.

The research objectives were to:

  • Define the meaning of “corporate leadership” to the oncology community
  • Reveal the leaders in oncology and IO and to compare / contrast how companies are evaluated by oncologists
  • Assess current drivers & barriers to IO treatment use and identify what oncologists would like to see improved by corporate leaders in the IO space

Please contact us if you wish to be included in the distribution of the study.

Value of medicines is number one concern for oncologists

Financial impact and affordability of medicines is the number one concern for oncologists in our 2019 Leadership research in ImmunoOncology. Oncologists were asked to choose their top three areas (from a list of fourteen attributes) for corporate leaders to improve most over the next few years.Most Wanted Areas of Improvement for Corporate Leaders in ImmunoOncology - Financial impact

The sentiment is especially pronounced in the United States where almost half (47%) of the surveyed oncologists worry about the financial impact of oncology medications on the healthcare system and patients. In Europe, the concerns are also shared by a large group of oncologists (37%), and equally viewed as the most concerning aspect affecting corporate leadership moving forward. This coincides with the debate on the value of medicines picking up speed on both continents, and in Europe, more regulators and payors are working together on joint HTA assessments and cross-border purchasing (e.g. BeNeLuxA initiative).

While financial considerations do not materially influence treatment decisions of oncologists, the rising cost of medications is an ever-present worry. The surveyed oncologists fear insufficient value may have a toxic financial effect on the overall healthcare system.

Earlier and accelerated access

Oncologists in our research would like to see better and earlier access to innovative treatments for their patients.

In line with our findings from last week, MDoutlook - Oncologist Views on Areas of Improvement in Corporate Leadership patient support programs play an important role in making a difference for patients. Aligning your patient support program with the needs of healthcare professionals while further help to alleviate widely held concerns of “financial toxicity”. Communications and marketing functions also need to improve their messages and materials to better communicate value – see our detailed analysis to the right.
Follow our future releases to find out more about better stakeholder management and engagement using digital tools.

Key takeaways:

  • Value of cancer medicines is primary concern for oncologists
  • Early access schemes do make a difference to patients
  • Align patient support programs with value messaging

About the study

The 2019 Leadership Study was conducted with 100 oncologists across US and EU using MDoutlook’s proprietary ONCpulse™ service.

The research objectives were to:

  • Define the meaning of “corporate leadership” to the oncology community
  • Reveal the leaders in oncology and ImmunoOncology (IO) and to compare / contrast how companies are evaluated by oncologists
  • Assess current drivers & barriers to ImmunoOncology treatment use and identify what oncologists would like to see improved by corporate leaders in the IO space

Please contact us if you wish to be included in the distribution of the study.

Click on image to enlarge

1 in 3 oncologists do not have a clear leader in patient support programs

Our 2019 Leadership study in ImmunoOncology shows that 1 in 3 oncologists (across the US and EU) are not sufficiently aware of different patient support programs. While oncologists most often recall the patient support programs by BMS, Roche/Genentech and Merck there is no overall corporate leader.

Leader in Oncology Patient Support Programs

Click on image to enlarge

Patient support programs can play a vital part in increasing access to medications and help to improve patient compliance to treatments. Providing improved access to medicines and helping patients in their treatment journey are cornerstones of the current debate around high price ImmunoOncology therapies.

Healthcare professionals have consistently highlighted the financial impact for patients and limited access to innovative medicines as their main concerns in our study. The findings of our study provide an important impetus for patient facing functions such as public affairs and patient advocacy teams to improve recall with healthcare professionals in institutional settings.

Our study will further provide you with better insights and ideas to increase awareness of your patient support program.

About the study

The 2019 Leadership Study was conducted with 100 oncologists across US and EU using MDoutlook’s proprietary ONCpulse™ service.

The research objectives were to:

  • Define the meaning of “corporate leadership” to the oncology community
  • Reveal the leaders in oncology and ImmunoOncology (IO) and to compare / contrast how companies are evaluated by oncologists
  • Assess current drivers & barriers to ImmunoOncology treatment use and identify what oncologists would like to see improved by corporate leaders in the IO space

Please contact us if you wish to be included in the distribution of the study.

Oncologists value Bio-Pharma’s commercial and marketing activities

Having revealed the top attributes for successful leadership in ImmunoOncology, MDoutlook’s latest release reveals that specific commercial and marketing activities influence about 25% of oncologists’ leadership criteria.

Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

As important criteria for steering successful leadership reputation, oncologists rated the following specific commercial and marketing activities in order of impact.

  1. Length of time in market
  2. Corporate reputation
  3. Medical educational activities
  4. Patient access (affordability and availability)
  5. Patient support programs
  6. Supportive tools / services for healthcare professionals
  7. Promotional educational activities
  8. Sales representatives and MSLs
  9. Supportive digital health solutions

Subtle geographical differences were observed. US oncologist favored “longevity”, “corporate reputation” and “patient access (affordability / availability) to treatments”. EU based oncologists stressed more importance on “medical educational activities” and “supportive tools and services for healthcare professionals”.

To gain richer insight and understanding for your organization and your competitors, we analyzed performance by each attribute based on oncologist perspectives with their chosen life science companies. Get in touch to find out how your company and your competitors performed.

In a future release, we will explore specific attributes revealing company performance and opportunity.

About the study

The 2019 Leadership Study was conducted with 100 oncologists across US and EU using MDoutlook’s proprietary ONCpulse™ service.

The research objectives were to:

  • Define the meaning of “corporate leadership” to the oncology community
  • Reveal the leaders in oncology and ImmunoOncology (IO) and to compare / contrast how companies are evaluated by oncologists
  • Assess current drivers & barriers to ImmunoOncology treatment use and identify what oncologists would like to see improved by corporate leaders in the IO space

Please contact us if you wish to be included in the distribution of the study.

How oncologists view leadership in ImmunoOncology

In our latest release from the 2019 Leadership study, we reveal 7 key attributes that account for 75% of Oncologists’ definition of leadership in ImmunoOncology (IO).

Oncology Leadership Factors

Click on image to enlarge

These attributes comprise R&D / pipeline and product related aspects of life science company activities.

We found high consistency across geography. However, EU oncologists placed greater emphasis on “clinical trials & research grants” and “integration of biomarkers and diagnostics” compared to their US colleagues.

The attributes are in order of overall impact:

  1. Number of approvals (cancer types & lines of therapy)
  2. Number of different IO products available within portfolio
  3. Development of combination therapies with IO
  4. Clinical trials and research grants
  5. Integration of biomarkers and diagnostics
  6. Differentiation from other IO offerings
  7. Value proposition of product portfolio

For each of these attributes we analyze performance by life science companies. Get in touch to find out how your company and your competitors performed.

In our next release, we will explore the remaining attributes and reveal the relative importance of specific commercial and marketing activities to oncologists when defining leadership.

About the study

The 2019 Leadership Study was conducted with 100 oncologists across US and EU using MDoutlook’s proprietary ONCpulse™ service. The research objectives were to:

  • Define the meaning of “corporate leadership” to the oncology community
  • Reveal the leaders in oncology and ImmunoOncology (IO) and to compare / contrast how companies are evaluated by oncologists
  • Assess current drivers & barriers to ImmunoOncology treatment use and identify what oncologists would like to see improved by corporate leaders in the IO space

Please contact us if you wish to be included in the distribution of the study.

2019 Leadership Study in Oncology & ImmunoOncology

Later this month, MDoutlook will release results from the latest wave of their global leadership study.

Using ONCpulse™, we engaged with a robust sample of oncologists located in the United States and Europe. The research objectives were to:

  • Define the meaning of “corporate leadership” to the oncology community
  • Reveal the leaders in oncology and ImmunoOncology (IO) and to compare / contrast how companies are evaluated by oncologists
  • Assess current drivers & barriers to ImmunoOncology treatment use and identify what oncologists would like to see improved by corporate leaders in the IO space

Early results reveal the top 3 companies in Oncology and ImmunoOncology. Oncology Leadership Top 3

Across tumor types, BMS were rated as the top ImmunoOncology leader in 9 out of the 12 areas covered. Oncologists favored Roche & Merck highest in breast cancer (Roche); bladder cancer (Roche & Merck) and NSCLC (Merck).

ImmunoOncology Leadership across tumors

Oncologists chose to rate leadership across a greater number of companies in the broader oncology arena compared to a tighter list of companies they rated in ImmunoOncology.

Seventy percent of US oncologists viewed leadership success across tumor types than in any one specific area (30% respondents). This view was stronger when compared to the split picture (49% vs 51% respectively) presented by EU-based oncologists.

More information about the 2019 Leadership Study will become available as we publish the read-out results. Please contact us if you wish to be included in the distribution of the study.

ONCpulse™ – Precision Oncology In Action

ONCpulse™ recently provided time sensitive feedback from Oncologists’ review of messaging from a TPP project in metastatic Gastric Cancer. Reflecting on the study, the Director of Market Research Oncology of this large biopharmaceutical client reported (Jan 2019): “This is great! Thanks. I appreciate the quick turnaround and will discuss the results with my ad agency on Wednesday.”

Read below a data point example on how we provided insights.

Client need:

  • To obtain immediate feedback and ratings on statements to support a messaging campaign in metastatic Gastric Cancer (mGC)
  • To gauge reactions to new positioning statements from Oncologists treating a large number of patients with mGC

Project Delivered:

  • ONCpulse provided timely insights from more than 50 qualified US based Oncologists
  • Delivered within 72 hours
  • Custom quantitative study with fully analyzed results, produced by MD/PhD oncology-experienced analysts

Results Achieved:

  • Making confident business decisions with messaging choicesONCpulse Insights in mGC
  • Shortened development of new messages and provided strong direction for next steps with their ad agency
  • Created time and financial efficiencies to meet their planned timetable and budget

More information about ONCpulse can be found here. Contact us now to learn how we can help you improve your company’s decision making in today’s expansive and disruptive oncology environment.