The medical devices industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by increased need for homecare, preventative treatments, early diagnosis, reducing patient recovery times and improving outcomes, and growing importance of technologies such as machine learning, augmented reality, 5G and digitalization. In the last three years alone, there have been over 710,000 patents filed and granted in the medical devices industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in medical: pulmonary medication delivery. Buy the report here.

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However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilizing and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

30+ innovations will shape the medical devices industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the medical devices industry using innovation intensity models built on over 155,000 patents, there are 30+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, ultrasonic nebulizers and intra-oral 3D imaging are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Intraocular pressure monitoring, automated diabetes management, and tissue repair implants are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas is CPR assistance devices, which is now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the medical devices industry

Pulmonary medication delivery is a key innovation area in medical devices

Pulmonary medication delivery is a targeted method of administering drugs into the bloodstream through the lungs. Allowing for direct and rapid absorption of medications in the form of aerosols, dry powder, or nebulized solutions, it's used to treat respiratory and lung-related conditions such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and cystic fibrosis.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 90+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established medical devices companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of pulmonary medication delivery.

Key players in pulmonary medication delivery – a disruptive innovation in the medical devices industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.   

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.  

Patent volumes related to pulmonary medication delivery

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Chiesi Farmaceutici 293 Unlock Company Profile
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries 287 Unlock Company Profile
AstraZeneca 202 Unlock Company Profile
Syqe Medical 158 Unlock Company Profile
Mallinckrodt 98 Unlock Company Profile
Insmed 98 Unlock Company Profile
Philip Morris International 82 Unlock Company Profile
Vero Biotech 75 Unlock Company Profile
GSK 51 Unlock Company Profile
C. H. Boehringer Sohn 40 Unlock Company Profile
Zambon 38 Unlock Company Profile
Sanofi 37 Unlock Company Profile
Orbia Advance 37 Unlock Company Profile
OptiNose 34 Unlock Company Profile
Geno 33 Unlock Company Profile
Sumitomo Chemical 31 Unlock Company Profile
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals 30 Unlock Company Profile
Advanced Inhalation Therapies (AIT) 29 Unlock Company Profile
Novartis 27 Unlock Company Profile
Soleno Therapeutics 23 Unlock Company Profile
Ampio Pharmaceuticals 23 Unlock Company Profile
Bellerophon Therapeutics 23 Unlock Company Profile
E. Merck 22 Unlock Company Profile
AptarGroup 20 Unlock Company Profile
MannKind 19 Unlock Company Profile
Cardiff Scintigraphics 18 Unlock Company Profile
Cipla 17 Unlock Company Profile
Glenmark Pharmaceuticals 17 Unlock Company Profile
Takeda Pharmaceutical 16 Unlock Company Profile
Origin Enterprises 15 Unlock Company Profile
Parion Sciences 15 Unlock Company Profile
Massachusetts General Hospital 15 Unlock Company Profile
SolAeroMed 14 Unlock Company Profile
Charoen Pokphand Group 13 Unlock Company Profile
InspiRx 12 Unlock Company Profile
Altria Group 12 Unlock Company Profile
Nasaleze International 12 Unlock Company Profile
AlgiPharma 11 Unlock Company Profile
Third Pole 11 Unlock Company Profile
Mallinckrodt Pharma IP Trading DAC 11 Unlock Company Profile
Beyond Air 11 Unlock Company Profile
Acorda Therapeutics 10 Unlock Company Profile
Aerogen 10 Unlock Company Profile
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Forderung der Angewandten Forschung 10 Unlock Company Profile
Otsuka 10 Unlock Company Profile
Linde 9 Unlock Company Profile
Lupin 9 Unlock Company Profile
Galecto 9 Unlock Company Profile
Grupo Ferrer Internacional 9 Unlock Company Profile
Verneuil Participations 8 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Chiesi Farmaceutici is one of the leading patent filers in the field of pulmonary medication delivery. Some other key patent filers in the field include Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, AstraZeneca, and Syqe Medical.

In terms of application diversity, AlgiPharma leads the pack, while Orbia Advance and C. H. Boehringer Sohn stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, AstraZeneca held the top position, followed by Insmed, and Sumitomo Chemical.

Pulmonary medication delivery offers efficient ways to manage respiratory conditions, while minimizing side effects and improving patient adherence. It has received favorable attention and can be considered promising for its role in targeted treatment due to its ability to provide localized, rapid, and highly effective therapy, ultimately improving clinical outcomes for patients with respiratory conditions. The outlook for this drug delivery system is expected to be significantly improved by innovations in drug development, personalized medicine, and advancements in healthcare technologies.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the medical devices industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Medical Devices.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.