Price and Volume Movers
The J.P. Morgan conference commenced today giving companies an opportunity to update their pipelines and provide news of license deals and acquisitions. Coupled with the fact that the Biotech Showcase for smaller companies is also running concurrently, this provides a mini earnings season news flow, yet compressed into only 3-4 days.
Although over 50 companies on BioPharmCatalyst have had their pipelines updated today with a further 15-20 to be added tonight, only those with significant changes with their trial timelines will be noted below. Any important additions made tonight will be added to tomorrow’s update.
Now to Monday’s price movers.
It was mentioned in last Friday’s newsletter that EnteroMedics Inc (NASDAQ:ETRM) shares had soared 340% over two days on volume over approximately 15x its share float. The energy continued today, with shares surging another 93% on similar volume to $17.70 for a three-day cumulative rise of over 740% with day traders, rather than meaningful news, controlling the momentum behind the price move.
ARIAD Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ARIA) was the major newsmaker of the day when it announced that it will be acquired by by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company (Japan) for $24 per share under which Takeda will acquire all of the outstanding shares for approximately $5.2 billion. The transaction is expected to close by the end of February 2017. Shares of Ariad closed up 73% to $23.75 on 35x average volume.
Mast Therapeutics, Inc. (NYSE MKT: MSTX) announced over the weekend that it will create a reverse merger with Savara Inc with shareholders of Savara owning 76% of the newly formed company expected to be named Savara Inc. Shares spiked up in early trading before retracing some of its gains to close up 52% to $0.15 on 12x average volume.
AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Inc (NASDAQ:AMAG) shares plummeted to close down over 35% to $23.00 on 16x average volume. The company released a number of updates today which disappointed investors. It agreed to make an upfront payment of $60m to Palatin Technologies, Inc. for (NYSEMKT:PTN) for rights to Rekynda(bremelanotide) for treatment of hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD). However, the major catalyst was a downgrade by Raymond James from Market Perform to Underperform. Makena, the key revenue earner for the company, only has orphan drug status until February 2018 and today it noted that it has discontinued a recently initiated comparative pain study and it will not plan to request orphan exclusivity as part of an upcoming Supplemental New Drug Application for Makena.
Incyte Corporation (NASDAQ:INCY) shares closed up 9% to $118.53 on 2.5x average volume. The company announced that it will be advancing its development program of its IDO1 inhibitor epacadostat, with KEYTRUDA, an anti-PD-1 therapy run by Merck (NYSE:MRK). Four additional Phase 3 trials are planned. Shares of NewLink Genetics Corp (NASDAQ:NLNK) closed up 18% to $13.12 on 4x average volume on the back of the news. NewLink has its own IDO1 inhibitor , NLG919, and has currently a license agreement with Genentech.
Egalet Corporation (Nasdaq: EGLT) announced during the trading day that the FDA has approved ARYMO ER (morphine sulfate) extended-release (ER) tablets C-II for the management of severe pain. Shares initially spiked up over 20% before retracing gains once it was noted that there would not be an oral abuse deterrence on the label. Shares closed up 6% on 10x average volume but its gains have all but evaporated in the after-hours session, currently trading at $7.91.
Exelixis, Inc. (Nasdaq:EXEL) shares closed up 15% to $17.58 on 2x average volume. The company announced today that Genentech, Inc. has withdrawn its counterclaim against Exelixis regarding marketing expenses for COTELLIC (cobimetinib) plus Zelboraf. Exelixis is relieved of $18.7m of disputed costs previously charged by Genentech and Genentech will return $7.1m that Exelixis paid previously.
ProNAi Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: DNAI) announced it has changed its corporate name to Sierra Oncology, Inc. and that its shares will trade on the NASDAQ under the symbol ‘SRRA’, effective on January 10.
A selection of pipeline updates below: