While U.S. stocks traded mostly higher Thursday, as oil recovered slightly from multi-year lows, the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF fell nearly 2 percent. Among the biotech equities in focus are TrovaGene Inc (NASDAQ:TROV), AEterna Zentaris Inc. (USA) (NASDAQ:AEZS) and Synthetic Biologics Inc (NASDAQ:SYN). Let’s take a look and see what the analysts have to say about TROV, AEZS and SYN.
TrovaGene shares jumped nearly 70% today following the announced contract with America’s Choice Provider Network (ACPN). In reaction, Cantor analyst Bryan Brokmeier reiterated a Buy rating and a $10 price target on the stock.
Brokmeier commented, “The contract demonstrates that the company’s commercialization plan continues to progress, in our view. Last week, TROV announced that it had built its salesforce up to six representatives and two managers, which with the support of the ACPN contract and recently published and presented data, should further strengthen the company’s market penetration. We anticipate additional data to be published and presented in the coming months, which should further support the validation and clinical utility of TROV’s urine-based tests.”
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Bryan Brokmeier has a yearly average return of 9.2% and a 51.1% success rate. Brokmeier has a -48.3% average return when recommending TROV, and is ranked #463 out of 3579 analysts.
As of this writing, all the 5 analysts polled by TipRanks rate TrovaGene stock a Buy. With a return potential of 83%, the stock’s consensus target price stands at $10.
AEterna Zentaris Inc. (USA)
Maxim analyst Jason Kolbert reiterated a Buy rating on shares of Aeterna Zentaris, with a price target of $11, after the company completed the kick-off meeting with 77 clinical investigators to review the confirmatory phase III trial of Macrilen for the treatment of adult growth hormone deficiency (AGHD).
Kolbert noted, “We believe Macrilen is a viable diagnostic and potential therapeutic that provides what we believe is a better option in the AGHD marketplace and potentially in traumatic brain injury.We believe the market is underestimating the value of the Macrilen program, which we see as low risk, high reward, and for that matter, the entire company.”
According to TipRanks.com, analyst Jason Kolbert has a yearly average return of -21.5% and a 24.0% success rate. Kolbert has a -72.7% average return when recommending AEZS, and is ranked #3577 out of 3579 analysts.
The overwhelmingly majority of analysts say AEZS is a “buy.” The average forecast is for the stock to hit $9.50 in the coming months, according to TipRanks.
Synthetic Biologics Inc
Finally, William Blair analyst Y Katherine Xu reiterated an Outperform rating on shares of Synthetic Biologics, with a price target of $11, after the company reported positive top-line data from the second Phase II study of SYN-010 in constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome.
Xu wrote, “We expect the full data to be presented at the upcoming Canadian Digestive Disease Week (February 26-29, Montreal). Upside to the data could come from the metabolic parameters. We note that lipid levels and BMI (body mass index) data were collected in the study as well. It has been demonstrated in previous small exploratory clinical studies that methane production also correlated with obesity and diabetes, and eradication of methanogens reduces dyslipidemia and improves insulin sensitivity. As a result, SYN-010 could have an impact in these disease areas as well. Although there is no intent to study these areas as label claims, the benefits offered by SYN-010 beyond IBS would make the agent more attractive in the market, in our opinion.”
The analyst concluded, “We reiterate our Outperform rating and $11 price target ahead of the full data release expected in late February. In our probability-adjusted net present value (NPV) model, we estimate peak sales for SYN-004 at $850 million in 2031 with a 60% probability of commercialization and market share at a peak of 15%; we project 100% ownership by Synthetic Biologics in the United States and 20% royalties on sales in the EU.”
According to TipRanks.com, analyst Y Katherine Xu has a yearly average return of -2.9% and a 36.2% success rate. Xu has a -18.3% average return when recommending SYN, and is ranked #2622 out of 3579 analysts.