ACADACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:ACAD) announced the initiation of CLARITY, a Phase II study to evaluate pimavanserin for adjunctive treatment in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who have an inadequate response to first-line therapies for clinical depression. Pimavanserin is a selective serotonin inverse agonist (SSIA) preferentially targeting 5-HT2A receptors that may play a role in depression.

“Major depressive disorder affects millions of people in the United States every year and many do not respond adequately to currently available treatments,” said Professor Maurizio Fava, M.D., Executive Vice Chair, Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Associate Dean for Clinical & Translational Research, Harvard Medical School. “With its highly selective mechanism of action, pimavanserin may provide a new approach to the adjunctive treatment of patients with major depressive disorder and may represent an opportunity to improve clinical outcomes in these patients.”

“We are committed to the development of pimavanserin in additional CNS disorders that are underserved by currently available therapies and represent a significant unmet medical need. Inadequate response to current antidepressants is one such condition,” said Serge Stankovic, M.D., M.S.P.H., ACADIA’s Executive Vice President, Head of Research and Development. “We are gratified to be able to leverage the vast knowledge and expertise of our colleagues at MGH and conduct this study in collaboration with the MGH Clinical Trials Network & Institute.” (Original Source)

Shares of ACADIA Pharmaceuticals closed yesterday at $26.99, down $0.66 or -2.39%. ACAD has a 1-year high of $42.49 and a 1-year low of $16.64. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $24.45 and its 200-day moving average is $33.50.

On the ratings front, ACAD stock has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on November 13, Leerink analyst Paul Matteis reiterated a Hold rating on ACAD, with a price target of $29, which implies an upside of 7% from current levels. Separately, on November 8, Merrill Lynch’s Tazeen Ahmad reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $35.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Paul Matteis and Tazeen Ahmad have a yearly average return of 7.5% and 38.3% respectively. Matteis has a success rate of 57% and is ranked #564 out of 4243 analysts, while Ahmad has a success rate of 56% and is ranked #142.

Overall, 2 research analysts have assigned a Hold rating and 7 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 $43.00 which is 59.3% above where the stock closed yesterday.

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals, Inc. engages in the research, development, and manufacture of pharmaceutical products. It caters to patients with central nervous system disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Schizophrenia, chronic pain, and Glaucoma. Its portfolio consists of Nuplazid, Pimavanserin, Adrenergic, and Muscarinic.