In a Dec. 2 research note, Dawson James Securities analyst Jason Kolbert purported that Anavex Life Sciences Corp.'s (AVXL:NASDAQ) ANAVEX2-73 is "a better choice" than Biogen's beta amyloid Alzheimer's drug aducanumab.
Kolbert chose this time to highlight Anavex as a recent Barron's report "highlighted a former colleague's note discussing the likelihood that the firm's beta amyloid Alzheimer's drug aducanumab is not likely to get approved" by the FDA. Kolbert opined that it is surprising Biogen is even trying for approval as aducanumab had "mixed clinical results."
"Our point here is not to argue the validity of Biogen's data but to point out, by comparison, how compelling the Anavex data looks to us," on all studies, from animal to recent clinical ones, he noted. Anavex is currently in a Phase 2b/3 trial, which could be done by year-end 2020. If so, commercialization could ensue by the end of 2022, he stated.
Kolbert highlighted that ANAVEX2-73 has a different mechanism of action in Alzheimer's disease than aducanumab. Rather than focus on beta amyloid, it targets and activates the Sigma-1 receptor. "It is believed that Sigma 1 can help to protect a cell from the accumulation of misfolded proteins, acting to chaperone them out of the cell. As a result, cell metabolism (oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction) are kept in balance." Accordingly, it could have "an impact across a wide range of neurodegenerative diseases from Alzheimer's to Parkinson's and niche orphan diseases such as Rett syndrome, which may represent a 'fast path' to establish proof of concept, around Sigma-1 agonism," Kolbert commented.
Dawson James has a Buy rating and a $16 per share target price on Anavex. The stock is currently trading at around $2.38 per share.[NLINSERT]
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Disclosures for Dawson James Securities, Anavex Life Sciences Corp., December 2, 2019
The Firm does not make a market in the securities of the subject company(s). The Firm has NOT engaged in investment banking relationships with AVXL in the prior twelve months, as a manager or co-manager of a public offering and has NOT received compensation resulting from those relationships. The Firm may seek compensation for investment banking services in the future from the subject company(s). The Firm has not received any other compensation from the subject company(s) in the last 12 months for services unrelated to managing or co-managing of a public offering.
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