In a Feb. 8 research note, H.C. Wainwright analyst Andrew Fein wrote that Axovant Sciences Ltd. (AXON:NYSE) will likely clinically advance its gene therapy pipeline quickly.
Evidence of this, noted Fein, is the "strong execution" the company displayed over the past year, bolstering the pipeline, speeding up development timelines and recruiting top gene therapy experts. These efforts have been part of the company rebuild and shift into the gene therapy space.
Second, Fein highlighted, a steady flow of trial results is expected over the next few months. Specifically, initial data from AXO-Lenti-PD are anticipated in Q1/19, initial results from AXO-Lenti-PD are expected in March 2019 and initial findings from AXO-AAV-GM1 should read out in H2/19. These data releases can derisk those clinical programs.
"AXO-Lenti-PD is moving forward," Fein indicated, and could do so on an accelerated development path by leveraging the data set from ProSavin, a predecessor gene therapy product. "For AXO-Lenti-PD, we believe that the scientific rationale is strong by delivering aromatic L-amino acid decarboxylase into the putamen of patients with Parkinson's disease, and this approach has been supported by the clinical data from both ProSavin and VY-AADC thus far."
Further, Fein added, the FDA indicated that Axovant may consider ProSavin results as part of one AXO-Lenti-PD development program, and it agreed with the company's manufacturing and quality control plans.
As for Axovant's financial standing, it had $84.9 million in cash and cash equivalents at year-end 2018.
H.C. Wainwright has a Buy rating and a $7 per share price target on Axovant, whose current share price is around $1.24.[NLINSERT]
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Disclosures from H.C. Wainwright & Co., Axovant Sciences Ltd., Earnings Update, February 8, 2019
I, Andrew S. Fein, Li Wang Watsek and Alicia Yin, Ph.D., certify that 1) all of the views expressed in this report accurately reflect my personal views about any and all subject securities or issuers discussed; and 2) no part of my compensation was, is, or will be directly or indirectly related to the specific recommendation or views expressed in this research report; and 3) neither myself nor any members of my household is an officer, director or advisory board member of these companies.
Investment Banking Services include, but are not limited to, acting as a manager/co-manager in the underwriting or placement of securities, acting as financial advisor, and/or providing corporate finance or capital markets-related services to a company or one of its affiliates or subsidiaries within the past 12 months.
None of the research analysts or the research analyst's household has a financial interest in the securities of Axovant Sciences Ltd., Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. and Voyager Therapeutics, Inc. (including, without limitation, any option, right, warrant, future, long or short position).
As of January 31, 2019 neither the Firm nor its affiliates beneficially own 1% or more of any class of common equity securities of Axovant Sciences Ltd., Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. and Voyager Therapeutics, Inc.
Neither the research analyst nor the Firm has any material conflict of interest in of which the research analyst knows or has reason to know at the time of publication of this research report.
The research analyst principally responsible for preparation of the report does not receive compensation that is based upon any specific investment banking services or transaction but is compensated based on factors including total revenue and profitability of the Firm, a substantial portion of which is derived from investment banking services.
The Firm or its affiliates did not receive compensation from Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. and Voyager Therapeutics, Inc. for investment banking services within twelve months before, but will seek compensation from the companies mentioned in this report for investment banking services within three months following publication of the research report.
The Firm or its affiliates did receive compensation from Axovant Sciences Ltd. for investment banking services within twelve months before, and will seek compensation from the companies mentioned in this report for investment banking services within three months following publication of the research report.
H.C. Wainwright & Co., LLC managed or co-managed a public offering of securities for Axovant Sciences Ltd. during the past 12 months.
The Firm does not make a market in Axovant Sciences Ltd., Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. and Voyager Therapeutics, Inc. as of the date of this research report.