Stock Update (NASDAQ:CELG): Celgene Corporation’s Oral OTEZLA Receives Positive NICE Recommendation for Adults with Chronic Plaque Psoriasis


Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG) announced that adult patients in England and Wales with chronic plaque psoriasis will now have access to oral OTEZLA®(apremilast) following a positive final appraisal determination from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). The decision is the conclusion of a NICE Rapid Review and ensures patients in England andWales will join those in Scotland, who have been benefitting from access to OTEZLA since it was recommended by the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) in June 2015.

Psoriasis has been found to have a detrimental effect on many aspects of patients’ day-to-day lives, impacting everything from ability to dress and participate in sports to their social, work and personal relationships, with 46% of psoriasis patients saying they feel ‘depressed’ about their condition. Psoriasis is estimated to affect around 960,000 adults in the UK.

Professor Chris Griffiths, Professor of Dermatology, University of Manchester commented: “NICE’s decision to recommend apremilast for the treatment of psoriasis is an important step forward in the management of a disease which for many patients can have a significant detrimental effect on their lives. Apremilast offers patients a much needed new oral treatment option that does not require routine laboratory monitoring. Clinical trials of apremilast demonstrated a reduction in severity of psoriasis and associated itching as well as improvement in hard to treat areas, such as the nails and scalp. The drug has the potential to fill an important gap in the psoriasis treatment pathway and its introduction is welcomed by patients and healthcare practitioners.”

OTEZLA, a tablet, has a novel mechanism of action offering a treatment option that does not require pre-screening for tuberculosis or regular laboratory monitoring.

NICE recognises the clinical benefit and innovation of OTEZLA by recommending it for use in England and Wales as an option for treating chronic plaque psoriasis in adults whose disease has not responded to other systemic therapies, including ciclosporin, methotrexate and PUVA (psoralen and ultraviolet-A light), or when these treatments are contraindicated or not tolerated, only if:

  • the disease is severe, as defined by a total Psoriasis Area Severity Index (PASI) of 10 or more and a Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) of more than 10

Carla Renton, Information and Communications Manager at the Psoriasis Association remarked: “This decision is welcomed by thePsoriasis Association. People with psoriasis have a chronic and complex condition that can have a profound effect on quality of life and mental wellbeing, as well as physical health. An increase in the choice of treatment options for people with psoriasis is invaluable in helping them regain control of their condition and of their day to day lives.”

Dr Dani Thomas, Medical Director, Celgene UK & Ireland commented: Celgene has been working with NICE over the past year to ensure patients in England and Wales can benefit from OTEZLA. We are delighted that eligible people with psoriasis looking for a much needed oral treatment will now have access to OTEZLA.”

OTEZLA is an oral treatment for psoriasis, and works by reducing the activity of an enzyme called phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4), which is involved in the process of inflammation. By reducing the activity of this enzyme, OTEZLA can help to control the inflammation associated with psoriasis, and thereby reduce the signs and symptoms of the condition. Over 100,000 patients worldwide have already been treated with OTEZLA.9

In clinical trials, treatment with OTEZLA for psoriasis showed a reduction in psoriatic skin plaques and other signs and symptoms of the disease including itch, skin pain and discomfort. OTEZLA is also effective in the treatment of the difficult to treat aspects of scalp, nail and pruritus.

OTEZLA is currently undergoing NICE Rapid Review for active psoriatic arthritis. A positive Appraisal Consultation Document (ACD) recommending OTEZLA for use in the NHS was issued by NICE on 11th October 2016.12 A decision is expected later this year. (Original Source)

Shares of Celgene closed yesterday at $100.02, down $0.04 or -0.04%. CELG has a 1-year high of $128.39 and a 1-year low of $93.05. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $105.07 and its 200-day moving average is $105.52.

On the ratings front, Celgene has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on October 18, Jefferies Co. analyst Brian Abrahams reiterated a Buy rating on CELG, with a price target of $134, which implies an upside of 34.0% from current levels. Separately, on the same day, Canaccord Genuity’s John Newman reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $156.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Brian Abrahams and John Newman have a total average return of 8.6% and -11.5% respectively. Abrahams has a success rate of 54.4% and is ranked #316 out of 4180 analysts, while Newman has a success rate of 35% and is ranked #4063.

Overall, 3 research analysts have assigned a Hold rating and 16 research analysts have given a Buy rating to the stock. When considering if perhaps the stock is under or overvalued, the average price target is $137.50 which is 37.5% above where the stock closed yesterday.

Celgene Corp. is an integrated global biopharmaceutical company engaged primarily in the discovery, development and commercialization of therapies for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases through gene and protein regulation. Its targeting areas include intracellular signaling pathways, protein homeostasis and epigenetics in cancer and immune cells, immunomodulation in cancer and autoimmune diseases and therapeutic application of cell therapies. The company’s products include Revlimid, Vidaza, Thalomid, Pomalyst/Imnovid, Abraxane, and Istodax.