Wedbush Maintains Outperform on Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc on Back of NASH Competition Results


Wedbush’s healthcare analyst Liana Moussatos weighed in with her views on Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ICPT), after the company’s two competitors announced phase 2 results for their treatment candidates for NASH. The analyst reiterated an Outperform rating without providing a price target.

Moussatos explained, “Conatus Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:CNAT) emricasan achieved the primary endpoint of 39% reduction in alanine amino transferase (ALT; p<0.05) versus 14% for placebo at day 28 from baseline. No mention of an impact on fibrosis. The company indicated its focus for emricasan is initially for patients with cirrhosis (versus NASH with fibrosis for OCA). Genfit also released results from its GOLDEN-505 phase 2b trial. Unfortunately, due to a high placebo rate in patients with early NASH (NAS of 3) the original primary endpoint did not achieve statistical significance.”

Bottom line, “Based on these two top-line data releases, we do not see a material threat to OCA, which demonstrated a reversal in fibrosis in the phase 2b FLINT trial for NASH patients with fibrosis. We anticipate learning the Phase 3 OCA-NASH with fibrosis design in Q2 when we anticipate that Intercept is likely to announce initiation of the trial.”

According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Liana Moussatos has a total average return of 47.3% and a 66.1% success rate. Moussatos has a 130.2% average return when recommending ICPT, and is ranked #8 out of 3550 analysts.

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