Healthcare Business

Analysts Massively Increasing Dyax Price Targets

The next hot biotech stock could very well be Dyax Corp. (NASDAQ: DYAX). With biotech such a hot sector of late, investors are likely to pay close attention to this pop to see if this is the next leg up or whether this is an overreaction. So far, analysts have not backed off their bullish views. In fact, many analysts took their price targets up remarkably on the news.

The company announced positive drug study data on Tuesday evening from the Phase 1b clinical study of the company’s investigational product, DX-2930. This candidate is being developed for the prevention of hereditary angioedema (HAE) attacks. Note that this disorder affects roughly one in 10,000 to 50,000 people.

A total of 37 subjects were randomized to active drug or placebo in a 2:1 ratio across four dosing groups of 30, 100, 300 or 400 mg. Each subject received two doses of DX-2930 or placebo, separated by 14 days, and was followed for 15 weeks after the second dose.

The good news was that DX-2930 was well tolerated at all dose levels. There were no deaths or subject discontinuations due to an adverse event. No serious adverse events in subjects treated with DX-2930 and no evidence of dose-limiting toxicity were reported.

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Another big bit of news to note in this release was that Dyax received Fast Track designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the investigation of DX-2930 for HAE.

Analysts are looking for almost $93 million in 2015 revenues, followed by an expectation of $117.6 million in 2016 revenues. The company is expected to have losses of $0.19 per share in 2015 and $0.05 per share in 2016.

After seeing such a jump in reaction to the announcement, analysts could not help but weigh in on Dyax after the news broke. Again, some of the price target hikes are nothing short of huge.

  • Oppenheimer maintained an Outperform rating and raised the price target to $26 from $14.
  • RBC Capital Markets maintained its Outperform rating and raised the price target to $31 from $18. Also kudos to RBC for predicting positive results ahead of the study being released.
  • Leerink Partners reiterated an Outperform rating and raised the price target to $25.
  • Wedbush reiterated an Outperform rating and raised the price target to $35. The firm noted, “Small numbers, but data suggest DX-2930 could represent the new gold standard for HAE prophylaxis.”
  • Jefferies reiterated a Buy rating and raised the price target to $31 from $18, implying that DX-2930 has the potential to become the next standard of care in HAE.
  • Needham reiterated a Buy rating and raised its price target to $30 from $19.
  • Merrill Lynch reiterated a Buy rating and raised its price target to $30 from $16. The firm noted that the drug showed impressive efficacy and a thus far clean safety profile.

Note that short interest for the March 13 settlement date, ahead of this release, was the highest since December, at 4.9 million with 4.8 days to cover.

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In Wednesday’s premarket trading alone, Dyax moved nearly 1.6 million shares, already well above its average daily volume of 973,582.

Following the opening bell, shares of Dyax were up 52% at $25.57, in a 52-week trading range of $6.05 to $18.07.