Cowen Boosts Price Target on Global Blood Therapeutics (GBT) Amid GBT-440 Phase III HOPE Trial FDA-Accepted Design

Today, Global Blood Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:GBT) announced design of the pivotal two-part GBT-440 Phase III HOPE trial in evaluating adults and adolescents with Sickle Cell Disease (SCD), which was sanctioned by the FDA after “extensive discussions.”

On back of the clinical update, Cowen analyst Ritu Baral believes the HOPE trial’s primary endpoint “looks achievable” and therefore reiterates an Outperform rating on shares of GBT while lifting the price target from $80 to $83, which represents a nearly 309% increase from where the shares last closed.

Baral explains, “The primary endpoint of Pt A (PBO, 900mg, 1500mg arms) is proportion of patients achieving >1mg/dL Hb increase at 6 mo. which we think is achievable given previous data. Secondary endpoints will determine the main P Pt B clinical outcome endpoint (not necessarily VOC, possibly a PRO), due by 1H19.”

Moreover, the analyst adds in regards to the Part A/Part B structure of the trial, “We expect guidance on Part A data timing once trial sites start enrolling patients but suspect it could be as early as 2H17.”

“If an Pt. B endpoint of hospitalization or transfusion is chosen, final enrollment could be >250 pts. Regardless, treatment duration will be until last enrolled patient is treated for 12 months (which should allow for early patients to be treated for 18+ months). Statistical significance on this secondary endpoint would support full FDA approval per recent agency discussions,” Baral concludes.

As usual, we recommend taking analyst notes with a grain of salt. According to TipRanks, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, four-star analyst Ritu Baral is ranked #469 out of 4,190 analysts. Baral has a 40% success rate and realizes 5.9% in his yearly returns. However, when recommending GBT, Baral loses 12.7% in average profits on the stock.

TipRanks analytics demonstrate GBT as a Strong Buy. Based on 3 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 100% rate a Buy on GBT. The consensus price target stands at $71, marking a 250% upside from where the stock is currently trading.


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