Global Blood Therapeutics Inc (GBT): Despite Reports of Two Patient Deaths, This Top Analyst Remains Bullish

Why patient deaths don't necessarily scuttle Global Blood's chances for voxelotor's clinical success.

Global Blood Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:GBT) investors got cold feet today, sending shares tumbling nearly 14% in Tuesday’s trading session. The reason? The drug maker reported at the American Society of Hematology’s (ASH) annual meeting that two patients with severe anemia and various co-morbidities died while receiving voxelotor under the compassionate access.

However, Cowen analyst Ritu Baral points out that both patients had multiple co-morbidities and advanced organ injury prior to initiation of treatment (e.g., chronic kidney disease, hepatic dysfunction, iron overload), and the treating physicians concluded that voxelotor did not contribute to either death, nor to patient decline previous to death.

“Despite the high level of disease severity at the time of treatment start, voxelotor appeared to elicit strong responses in terms of Hb values, as well as daily pain, VOC-related hospitalizations, number of transfusions, as well as depression and measures of QoL. All four patients who had low room air oxygen saturations at baseline improved upon treatment, and the 2 patients who were oxygen-dependent prior to treatment initiation no longer required continuous supplemental oxygen after receving voxelotor. The clinician who presented the poster passionately underlined the large impact that the drug has had in these terminally-ill patients from a QoL standpoint,” Baral stated.

Baral reiterates an Outperform rating on shares of Global Blood with a price target of $83, which represents a potential upside of 116% from where the stock is currently trading.

According to, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, Ritu Baral is a top analyst to follow to outperform the market. Baral has a yearly average return of 25.4% and a 53% success rate. Baral has a 51.4% average return when recommending GBT, and is ranked #61 out of 4723 analysts.

Global Blood stock has one of the best ratings by the Street. TipRanks reveals that GBT has a Strong Buy analyst consensus rating with 8 back-to-back buy ratings in the last three months. Meanwhile the average analyst price target of $70.43 suggests the stock has upside potential of just over 83% from the current share price for the next 12 months.

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