Drug Discovery Outsourcing Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Drug Type (Small, Large Molecules), By Therapeutic Area (Respiratory System, Immunomodulation), By Workflow, And Segment- Global Industry Analysis, Share, Growth, Regional Outlook and Forecasts, 2022-2030

According to Nova one advisor, the global Drug Discovery Outsourcing market size is expected to hit around USD 6.90 billion by 2030 from valued at USD 3.90 billion in 2022 and growing at a CAGR of 7.40% from 2022 to 2030.


Key Takeaways:

  • By Workflow, the U.S. Drug Discovery Outsourcing market was valued at USD 938.2 million in 2021 and expected to witness growth at a CAGR of 6.8% from 2022 to 2030.
  • In 2021, the lead identification & candidate optimization segment dominated the market. It is one of the most critical processes in drug discovery
  • Oncology and anti-infective are projected to be among the fastest-growing segments during the forecast period
  • Small molecules dominated the market in 2021. The segment is also projected to register a high CAGR during the forecast period. This, however, may change in the short term with higher emphasis on biologics
  • Asia Pacific is projected to be the fastest-growing regional market during the forecast period
  • The growth can be attributed to the government initiatives to forge alliances with U.S. pharmaceutical companies

According to a survey conducted by Life Science Strategy Group of 120 clinical development decision-makers in the U. S., Europe, and China, industry professionals are undertaking major strategic changes to maintain their share in the unpredictable market scenario post the COVID-19 pandemic. The pharmaceutical industry has witnessed radical changes in the past two decades, in terms of a shift toward biologics, patent expiration, and unprecedented downsizing of internal discovery of big pharmaceuticals. All of this has accelerated the adoption of outsourcing activities.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought pharmaceutical companies in limelight. Drug discovery is a costly and lengthy process. This has urged pharmaceutical and biotech companies to opt for outsourcing their research activities to academic and private Contract Research Organizations (CROs). Rising partnerships between public or private entities accelerate drug discovery processes, which, in turn, increase the global demand for outsourcing services for drug discovery.

This scenario is expected to sustain post the covid implications as well. A rise in cases of chronic diseases has urged companies to develop medicines that extend life expectancy. According to the United Nations, people aged 65 years between 2015 and 2020 are expected to live an additional 17 years. Some of the key therapeutic areas where companies are actively involved in outsourcing include oncology, cardiovascular, and anti-infectives. In November 2020, AstraZeneca collaborated with 9 of the foremost oncology medical centers to expedite research in some of the hardest-to-treat cancers. The company will be funding clinical and non-clinical research proposals from members of this network.

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the value of drug discovery and development. People across the world are waiting for a vaccine while several companies are proactively involved in developing an effective vaccine to combat COVID-19. Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE received first approval for the vaccine following a worldwide Phase 3 trial of a potential strain to combat the virus. As for clinical trials, many of them are halted, while some are functional by adopting remote monitoring technologies. Thus, the pandemic has brought the pharmaceutical industry to center stage with drug discovery outsourcing becoming a key aspect to develop effective treatments against the virus. This is expected to boost the market revenue for the next 2 years i.e. a short-term boom, after which it shall regain its original growth curve.

Report Scope of the Drug Discovery Outsourcing Market

Report Coverage


Market Size

USD 6.90 Billion by 2030

Growth Rate

CAGR of 7.40% from 2022 to 2030

Largest Market

North America

Fastest Growing Market

Asia Pacific

Base Year


Forecast Period

2022 to 2030

Segments Covered

Workflow, therapeutics area, drug type, type, end-user and Region,

Companies Mentioned

Albany Molecular Research Inc.; EVOTEC; Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings; GenScript; Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC; Charles River; WuXi AppTec; Merck & Co., Inc.; Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.; Dalton Pharma Services; Oncodesign; Jubilant Biosys; DiscoverX Corp.; QIAGEN; Eurofins SE, Syngene International Limited, Dr. Reddy Laboratories Ltd., Pharmaron Beijing Co., Ltd., TCG Lifesciences Pvt Ltd., Domainex Ltd.


Workflow Insights

Lead identification & candidate optimization dominated the workflow segment with a revenue share of more than 32.19% in 2021. Based on workflows, the market is segmented into target identification & screening, target validation & functional informatics, lead identification & candidate optimization, preclinical development, and other associated workflows. The iterative process of lead identification, also known as hit-to-lead, is a significant stage in early drug discovery. It has historically proven to have improved efficiencies and economies of scale for drug developers. The introduction of advanced in silico techniques to improve the lead identification process, such as Computer-Aided Drug Discovery (CADD) and structure-based drug designs, support segment growth.

The rising need for skilled resources with combinational knowledge of metabolism, analytical chemistry, and computer software, along with the high cost associated with the integration of the latest computation technology, is enabling higher outsourcing for lead identification services. As a result, lead identification and candidate optimization accounted for the largest share, in terms of revenue in 2021. The other associated services segment, which includes cell line development, upstream & downstream processes, analytical/bioanalytical methods, formulations & quality assessment, and regulatory assistance, is anticipated to witness rapid growth in the coming years. This is owing to the increased adoption of outsourcing services and high investments in drug discovery R&D.

Therapeutics Area Insights

The respiratory systems segment accounted for the largest share of over 13.80% of the global revenue in 2021. Based on therapeutic areas, the market is segmented into the respiratory system, pain and anesthesiaoncology, ophthalmology, hematology, cardiovascular, endocrine, gastrointestinal, immunomodulation, anti-infective, central nervous system, dermatology, and genitourinary system. High incidence of respiratory disorders, such as bronchitis, tuberculosis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases (COPD), and asthma, coupled with increasing cases of drug resistance, has influenced the segment growth.

Furthermore, the introduction of novel drug delivery technologies, such as nasal sprays, has been identified to be the key contributor to the segment revenue. Lung diseases are responsible for over 700,000 hospital admissions and over 6 million inpatient bed-days in the U.K. per year. An estimated 1.2 million people are living with diagnosed COPD in the U.K. In view of this, in 2018, The University of Nottingham formed a strategic research collaboration with GSK and the University of Leicester.The collaboration is aimed at accelerating the discovery and development of innovative treatments for COPD. The oncology and anti-infective segments are both projected to witness significant CAGRs over the forecast period.

Increased focus on the identification of novel targets to support cancer treatment contributes to the lucrative growth of the oncology segment.In June 2020, AstraZeneca collaborated with Accent Therapeutics to discover, develop and commercialize transformative therapeutics targeting RNA-Modifying Proteins (RMPs) for the treatment of cancer. Accent will be responsible for R&D activities for a nominated preclinical program through to the end of Phase I clinical trials. Antimicrobial resistance is projected to become a global crisis with its soaring rate of emergence and spread resulting in a high economic burden. Companies have increased R&D in anti-infective drugs, having identified the future need. This is poised to benefit the market growth.

Drug Type Insights

The small molecules/pharmaceuticals segment accounted for the largest share of over 77.30% in 2021 and is projected to expand further at the fastest CAGR during the forecast period. Based on drug types, the market is classified into small and large molecules. Small molecules play a significant role in the development of innovative treatments for patients worldwide. Sales of half of the specialty medicines are attributable to small molecule applications. Its role is also visible in the recent approval trends. In 2019, the FDA approved 48 new drugs, 79% of which were composed of small molecules. Small molecules continue to play a vital role in the innovation of treatments across four key therapeutic areas: oncology, cardiovascular, autoimmune, and respiratory diseases.

Increased significance and highly effective components add up to the potential of small molecules in the pharmaceutical portfolio. Owing to this, the small molecules segment held the largest share in the market. Furthermore, the advantages of small molecules over larger ones have increased investments in the field, especially in cancer research. Small molecules can be administered orally, especially for the treatment of chronic diseases, they are cheaper, easy to manufacture, and can be combined with intracellular targets. Ongoing studies to investigate and develop novel therapeutics for various indications are expected to further influence segment growth.

Regional Insights

North America dominated the market in 2021 and accounted for the largest share of more than 35.20% of the global revenue. The growth of the regional market can be attributed to the technological advancements, presence of well-established research infrastructure & key players, and higher investments in drug discovery R&D. With outsourcing no longer being solely about cost reduction, rising need for efficiency, quality, and innovation are expected to contribute to market growth.The Asia region is projected to register the fastest CAGR during the forecast period. The region is emerging as a hub for outsourcing drug discovery activities owing to the availability of skilled manpower, lower costs, favorable regulatory environment, and quality data.

Japan, being the second-largest pharmaceutical market at a global level, is expected to provide a robust opportunity for CROs, thus driving the market. The revised Pharmaceutical Affairs Law supports research activities regarding tissue diagnostics and cancer in Japan, which is expected to boost the market growth in this country. In 2015, the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED) was established with an objective to manage data related to investigations and clinical trials, improve R&D infrastructure, and promote international strategies. This agency is an example of the initiatives taken to boost the market growth in Japan.

Some of the prominent players in the Drug Discovery Outsourcing Market include:

  • Albany Molecular Research Inc.
  • Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings
  • GenScript
  • Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC
  • Charles River
  • WuXi AppTec
  • Merck & Co., Inc.
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.
  • Dalton Pharma Services
  • Oncodesign
  • Jubilant Biosys
  • DiscoverX Corp.
  • Eurofins SE
  • Syngene International Limited
  • Dr. Reddy Laboratories Ltd.
  • Pharmaron Beijing Co., Ltd.
  • TCG Lifesciences Pvt Ltd.
  • Domainex Ltd.

Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2017 to 2030. For this study, Nova one advisor, Inc. has segmented the global Drug Discovery Outsourcing market

  • Workflow
    • Target Identification & Screening
    • Target Validation & Functional Informatics
    • Lead Identification & Candidate Optimization
    • Preclinical Development
    • Other Associated Workflow
  • Therapeutics Area
    • Respiratory System
    • Pain and Anesthesia
    • Oncology
    • Ophthalmology
    • Hematology
    • Cardiovascular
    • Endocrine
    • Gastrointestinal
    • Immunomodulation
    • Anti-infective
    • Central Nervous System
    • Dermatology
    • Genitourinary System
  • Drug Type
    • Small Molecules
    • Large Molecules (Biopharmaceuticals)
  • Type
    • Chemistry Services
    • Biology Services
  • End-User
    • Pharmaceutical & Biotechnology companies
    • Academic Institutes
    • Others

By Geography

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Latin America
  • Middle East & Africa (MEA)

Key Benefits for Stakeholders

  • This report provides a quantitative analysis of the market segments, current trends, estimations, and dynamics of the global Drug Discovery Outsourcing industry analysis from 2022 to 2030 to identify the prevailing Drug Discovery Outsourcing industry opportunity.
  • The market research is offered along with information related to key drivers, restraints, and opportunities.
  • Porter's five forces analysis highlights the potency of buyers and suppliers to enable stakeholders make profit-oriented business decisions and strengthen their supplier-buyer network.
  • In-depth analysis of the global Drug Discovery Outsourcing industry segmentation assists to determine the prevailing market opportunities.
  • Major countries in each region are mapped according to their revenue contribution to the global market.
  • Market player positioning facilitates benchmarking and provides a clear understanding of the present position of the market players.
  • The report includes the analysis of the regional as well as global Drug Discovery Outsourcing industry trends, key players, market segments, application areas, and market growth strategies.


Report Detail

  • Report Code:7541
  • No. of Pages:150+
  • Format:PDF/PPT/Excel

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