SAGE Therapeutics Inc (SAGE) Shines on Encouraging Clinical Data


Experienced investors in search of growth know to look beyond current trends and market momentum or rely on pundit’s expectations. Today’s results are important to consider, of course, but for bright investors, it’s the future that matters, and the future of SAGE Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:SAGE) looks bright.

The biopharmaceutical company announced positive top-line results from the Phase 2, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of SAGE-217 in the treatment of 89 adult patients with moderate to severe major depressive disorder (MDD). In the trial, treatment for 14 days with SAGE-217 was associated with a statistically significant mean reduction in the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D) 17-Item total score from baseline to Day 15 (the time of the primary endpoint) of 17.6 points for SAGE-217, compared to 10.7 for placebo (p<0.0001). SAGE-217 was generally well-tolerated with no serious or severe adverse events

Shares of Sage Therapeutics reacted to the news, skyrocketing nearly 75% to $160.63 in Thursday’s trading session.

Sage Therapeutics CEO Jeff Jonas commented, “These very encouraging data suggest the potential of SAGE-217 in the treatment of MDD as well as other mood-related disorders that we may pursue […] There has been little innovation in the discovery and development of treatments for depression in the last two decades. Coupled with our recent positive Phase 3 data read-out evaluating brexanolone for the treatment of postpartum depression, the findings in this study suggest our pipeline of proprietary GABAA modulators may impact novel and fundamental brain mechanisms, offering potential development opportunities in a variety of indications. The positive activity and safety findings of SAGE-217 in MDD support advancing the program into later stage clinical development and we will work with the FDA to determine next steps in the further development of SAGE-217.”

On the ratings front, SAGE stock has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report released today, Leerink Swann analyst Paul Matteis reiterated a Buy rating on SAGE. Similary, on November 27, RBC’s Brian Abrahams maintained a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $137.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Paul Matteis and Brian Abrahams have a yearly average return of 25.3% and 9.0% respectively. Matteis has a success rate of 61% and is ranked #233 out of 4721 analysts, while Abrahams has a success rate of 53% and is ranked #551.

Sentiment on the street is mostly bullish on SAGE stock. Out of 10 analysts who cover the stock, 10 suggest a Buy rating . The 12-month average price target assigned to the stock is $116.67, which represents a potential upside of 27% from where the stock is currently trading.

SAGE Therapeutics is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company. The company engages in the development and commercialization of novel medicines to treat central nervous system disorders. Its product candidate includes SAGE-547, which is in clinical development for super-refractory status epileptics; SAGE-217; and SAGE-689, which are in IND-enabling toxicology and safety pharmacology testing.