Top-selling biotech drugs based on revenue 2017

This statistic shows a ranking of the top 10 best-selling biotech drugs worldwide in 2017. In that year, Enbrel generated a revenue of some 7.9 billion U.S. dollars for co-marketing companies Amgen, Pfizer, Takeda (Japan), and Wyeth (rest of world), and thus was the world's third biotech drug based on revenue.

Best-selling biotech drugs worldwide

AbbVie’s Humira and Roche's Rituxan are among the top selling biotechnology drugs in the world, generating 18.4 billion U.S. dollars and 9.2 billion U.S. dollars, respectively, in 2017. Biotechnology has become more prevalent within the pharmaceutical industry. One of the first uses of biotechnology was for human insulin. The United States had around 860 dedicated biotechnology companies in 2015. However, one of the largest biotechnology companies in the world is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland. Roche generated some 34 billion U.S. dollars in biotech prescription drug revenues in 2017 and is expected to reach 42 billion U.S. dollars in 2024. One of their top selling drugs, Avastin, generated about 7.1 billion U.S. dollars in revenue in 2017. Avastin is a drug derived from biotechnology that is used to inhibit the growth of new blood vessels to treat some types of cancer.

The United States spent about 28.6 billion U.S. dollars on research and development in the biotechnology sector. The United States has also had about 34 percent of the world’s share of filed biotechnology patents in 2014, in comparison, Germany filed eight percent of global biotech patents.

Top selling biotech drugs worldwide in 2017

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Release date

February 2019



Survey time period


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