The global liquid handling technology market was valued at USD 2.88 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach USD 5.55 billion in 2025, growing at a CAGR of 8.5% over the forecast period. The ability of advanced liquid handling platforms to reduce the timelines of sample processing has led to the high adoption rate, amongst drug development entities.
Use of genetic tools such as microarrays and PCR has greatly influenced genotyping studies, macromolecule interactions, and gene expression. Less laboratory area required and growing concern for the economical use of consumables by such techniques has fueled the demand for advanced sample processing workstations.
Pharmaceutical companies are making enormous investments in global drug R&D, particularly in the developing countries such as China and India. Furthermore, the number of clinical studies registered with ClinicalTrials.gov has increased substantially from 101,125 in 2010 to more than 255,240 studies in 2017. More than 50% of these studies are focused on the development of drug and biologics. Such constant increase in research studies and funding has accelerated the adoption of liquid handling solutions.
Development of advanced liquid handlers enhances clinical research by reducing the development cost and facilitating rapid launch of drugs. As a result, pharmaceutical companies are geared towards the adoption of advanced liquid handling systems for quick drug approval.
Manufacturers are engaged in the development of products to support variable customer needs with respect to sample volume and application. For example, launch of 96 and 384 channel automated and semi-automated liquid dispensing systems coupled with a broad range of consumables and accessories.
Market players have designed and developed platforms based on different technologies to improve the efficiency of liquid handling in complicated and sensitive processes. For instance, an introduction of Echo Liquid Handler by Labcyte, Inc. for contactless sample transfer using acoustics is a remarkable advancement in market. This product reduces the risk of contamination which usually occurs due to disposable tips in conventional systems.
Products offered by the companies include automated workstations, small devices, and consumables. Automated workstations are projected to grow at the fastest CAGR owing to the rapid trend of automation in the pharma-biotech industry.
The companies are developing novel automated workstations using innovative technologies such as acoustic energy and Digital Microfluidics (DMF) as a result of growing demand for automated solutions amongst research communities. This, in turn, is anticipated to contribute to the lucrative growth of this segment.
Although workstations and small devices are expensive, they account for a one-time, long-term investment for the user. Small devices segment incorporates handheld manual & electronic pipettes, burettes, pipette controllers, and few semi-automated systems. Consumables accounted for the largest revenue share owing to the high volume requirement of sample input coupled with frequent usage of consumables resulting in the repetitive purchase of products. This frequent purchase increases the expense for the laboratory professionals, which in turn, boosts revenue generation through this segment.
Automated, semi-automated, and manual solutions are the various type of liquid handling solutions currently available in the market. Introduction of novel genetic tools such as CRISPR & NGS has spurred the demand for automated platforms, as these tools have resulted in rapid rise in number of ongoing genetic research activities.
Currently, a substantial number of automated and semi-automated workstations are available in the market for usage across small to large scale research laboratories for various sample handling requirements. These workstations can be used in various liquid handling steps for different workflows such as PCR reaction, serial dilution, plate replication, and plate reformatting.
Furthermore, the high cost of fully automated systems and the increasing necessity of liquid handling solutions to accelerate research workflow are the two factors that are expected to drive adoption of semi-automated systems. The demand for automation in repetitive steps such as sampling and liquid dispensing is expected to positively influence the uptake of semi-automated systems.
Microvolume liquid handling technologies have been underdeveloped in the past years. However, with an increase in number as well as complexity of molecular biology research activities, there are ongoing developments for manufacturing liquid handling technologies for sample handling.. Rising trends of high-throughput technologies and laboratory automation have fueled demand for liquid dispensing in various clinical workflows such as DNA sequencing, drug screening, and protein crystallization processes.
Earlier, liquid handlers were not used in the quality control processes during drug discovery and development due to the absence of protocols that can validate their performance. Introduction of novel liquid handling solutions has effectively addressed this challenge as the novel solutions can be assessed rapidly for their accuracy & specificity in sample transfer.
Liquid Handling Quality Assurance (LHQA) programs are designed to enable the implementation of these systems in various processes of drug development from compound preparation to clinical trials. The LHQA ensures process quality and reduces the overall cost & time of drug discovery, thereby contributing to the largest revenue share of the drug discovery & ADME-Tox in 2017.
Implementation of automated solutions has improved the reproducibility & quality of research programs in life science industry. Emerging economies, such as China and India, are reported to invest heavily for the establishment and development of academic institutes and research facilities for genetic and stem cell studies. Moreover, these economies are also receiving funds from state and central government.
Large universities & research institutes are recognized as the key contributors for the growth of academic & research institutes segment owing to the substantial number of ongoing PCR and microarray-based research activities at universities and research institutes. In addition to this, several biotech and pharma companies are observed to adopt automation in various processes.
The contract research organizations are expected to witness the fastest growth as a consequence of rise in penetration of outsourcing of drug manufacturing processes. Moreover, the CROs are witnessing pressure with respect to productivity and timelines, which in turn, is expected to positively impact the adoption of liquid handling solutions by CROs in the near future.
North America dominated the market with the largest revenue share in 2017 owing to the rapid adoption of automation instruments in the U.S.-based research facilities. The major companies in the region are observed collaborating with well-established universities and research centers in Europe. This collaboration is the result of presence of a substantial number of academic and research institutes in Europe.
However, emerging countries are witnessing notable developments in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and academic sectors, which in turn, is expected to drive the growth of Asia Pacific market. Furthermore, high investment in life science sectors including omics research, advanced healthcare, microbiology, drug development, and clinical diagnostics by countries such as Japan and China is anticipated to accelerate market demand in this region.
Some key companies operating globally as the manufacturers of liquid handling technology based products include Tecan Trading AG, LABCYTE INC., Hamilton Company, Gilson, Inc, Eppendorf AG, Labnet International, Inc., Borosil Glass Works Ltd., BioTek Instruments, Inc., Analytik Jena AG, Beckman Coulter, Inc., Aurora Biomed Inc., and Agilent Technologies.
Market players are embracing the trend of engaging in strategic partnerships with major pharma & biotech players to develop novel products. For instance, in February 2018, Brooks Life Sciences developed FluidX AcoustiX Sample Tube in partnership with AstraZeneca & Labcyte, Inc.
Base year for estimation
Actual estimates/Historical data
2014 - 2017
2018 - 2025
Revenue in USD Million & CAGR from 2018 to 2025
North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, MEA
Revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends
U.S., Canada, Germany, UK, Japan, China, Brazil, South Africa
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This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional & country levels and provides an analysis of the industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2014 to 2025. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global liquid handling technology market report on the basis of product, type, application, end use, and region:
Product Outlook (Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)
Tubes & Plates
Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)
Automated Liquid Handling
Manual Liquid Handling
Semi-Automated Liquid Handling
Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)
Drug Discovery & ADME-Tox Research
Cancer & Genomic Research
End User Outlook (Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)
Academic & Research Institutes
Pharmaceutical & Biotechnology Companies
Contract Research Organizations
Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)
Middle East and Africa (MEA)
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