The global non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) market is estimated to witness significant growth in the coming years due to growing popularity of non-invasive procedures. Improvement in reimbursement policies and introduction of advanced NIPT products are likely to support market growth. Rising awareness regarding these tests across the globe is also poised to create lucrative opportunities in the future. In present days, obstetricians are extensively suggesting these tests for early diagnostic screening in the first trimester of pregnancy.
Prenatal testing helps in determining the possibility of fetal abnormality. Development of these tests in a noninvasive form helps avoid expensive and risky invasive procedures such as chorionic villus sampling (CVS) and amniocentesis. Improvements by payers in coverage related to average risk pregnancy tests are anticipated to fuel the adoption of amniocentesis tests and Down's Syndrome treatment. This, in turn, is estimated to augment adoption rate of non-invasive prenatal aids.
Growing maternal age is projected to unfold ample growth opportunities in the market. Advancing maternal age is responsible for several health complications such as high blood pressure, reduced fertility, risk of miscarriage, and maternal death. It also increases the risk of chromosomal abnormalities in babies. Possible abnormalities in babies may include poor muscle tone, breathing complaints, heart related problems, and others. Increasing consciousness regarding prevention and screening of chromosomal anomalies can boost market growth in the coming years.
However, presence of strict regulatory framework regarding approval of medical devices can hinder the growth of the market. Lengthy approval procedures delay innovation and development of devices. In addition, lack of skilled professionals is also expected to restrain the growth of the non-invasive prenatal testing market.
Various techniques involved in NIPT tests include fetal cells in maternal blood tests, cell-free DNA in maternal plasma tests, biochemical screening tests, and ultrasound detection. Cell-free DNA in maternal plasma tests are anticipated to witness an upswing in their demand in the coming years. This can be attributed to growing requirement for cf-DNA-based techniques in NIPT testing. In addition, increasing government efforts for providing prenatal services are likely to stir up the demand for these tests.
North America is considered as one of the attractive markets in the global arena. High government spending for research and development (R&D) activities and development of whole genome sequencing as a result of availability of technologically advanced and presence of established healthcare research framework have been providing an upthrust to the regional market.
On the other hand, Asia Pacific is poised to exhibit noteworthy growth in the coming years. Rising average maternal age, improving healthcare facilities, rising disposable income, and high prevalence of chromosomal abnormalities are some of the primary growth stimulants for the regional market. Advancing maternal age and high-risk pregnancies in China are projected to create lucrative growth opportunities for the regional market in near future.
Countries such as Japan and China are sights of high growth rates in the region. Additionally, improvement in healthcare facilities along with growing exposure for clinical research in India and Australia are also projected to support the growth of the market in APAC in the coming years.
Some of the key players operating in the global non-invasive prenatal testing market are Sequenom Inc.; PerkinElmer, Inc.; Agilent Technologies, Inc.; Pacific Biosciences of California, Inc.; and Quest Diagnostics. Various laboratories and companies are collaborating with test provides for providing latest products and services to patients. This is anticipated to work in favor of the market.
In addition, public health agencies in major economies in the world are providing these tests directly, which is expected to bode well for the market. Companies are concentrating on development and launch of advanced tests. For instance, LifeCell, stem cell bank from India, introduced 'Pentastic', an ultrasound and biochemistry-based blood test. This test has to be carried out in the first trimester of pregnancy between 11 to 13 weeks. The screening can be performed to detect abnormalities related to genes and structural malformations in fetus. The test is also helpful to examine serious high blood pressure in pregnancy.
Research Support Specialist, USA