Drug AbuseAccording to the P&S Market Research report, the global drug of abuse testing market is expected to reach $3.9 billion in 2020. Major factors that lead to the growth of DOA testing are increased use of illicit drugs and the need of testing at organizational level.

Drug testing is mainly recommended for medical, legal as well as sports screening purposes. Blood, urine or other lab tests are used to assess drug use and monitor treatment related to drug addiction.

It is recommended that laboratories conduct an initial screening test followed by a confirmatory test on the sample before the specimen can be reported as positive. Immunoassay and chromatography techniques are used for both onsite and laboratory testing. Immunoassay tests that are based on the antibody – antigen reaction as a preliminary test to screen for drugs of abuse are well established and regularly practiced. Confirmation tests must be performed on all legal samples that exhibit positive immunoassay screening results. The confirmation test is often performed using Gas Chromatography-Mass spectrometry (GC-MS), which is widely known as the gold standard in confirmatory testing. For rapid testing, labs utilize ready-to-use drug of abuse testing reagents as well as compact bench-top clinical chemistry analyzers.

The latest P&S Market Research report divides the DOA testing market on the basis of type of tests, samples used for testing, and geography. The key findings of the report include:

  • The most common samples used for onsite testing are urine, saliva and hair. Among these, urine followed by saliva, are the most common specimens used in drug of abuse testing. Urine sample held major share in the global DOA market, and it also witnessed highest CAGR of 5.1% during the period 2011 to 2014. Hair is also becoming a more effective specimen for testing long term drug use.
  • While laboratory-based tests require skilled and trained personnel for providing detailed analysis, onsite testing market is growing due to ease of use, cost effectiveness and immediate results.
  • Geographically, North America was the largest market for drug of abuse testing in 2014, with 76.4% share of the total market. It was followed by Europe with 16.4% share and Asia with a 4.7% share of the total market.

According to the report, key players operating in the DOA testing market include Roche Holding Limited, Quest Diagnostics, Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings, Alere, Inc., Abbott Laboratories, Randox laboratories, Psychemedics Corporation, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Sonic Healthcare and Thermo Fisher Scientific.