Lineage Cell Delivers Lower-than-Feared Q1 Loss; Shares Pop 5%

Shares of Lineage Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (LCTX) rose 5% in Thursday’s extended trading session after the biotechnology company reported a smaller-than-expected loss in the first quarter. The company develops novel cell therapies for unmet medical needs.

Lineage Cell reported a loss of $0.01 per share in Q1 compared to the $0.06 loss per share recorded in the year-ago quarter. Analysts were expecting the company to report a loss of $0.03 per share.

Total revenues were $0.39 million in Q1 versus analysts’ expectations of $0.35 million. Top line figures were down 24% year-over-year.

Research and development expenses increased 3% year-over-year to $3.4 million, while general and administrative costs decreased 13.3% to $3.9 million. (See Lineage Cell Therapeutics stock analysis on TipRanks)

Lineage CEO Brian M. Culley said, “We remain encouraged by the totality of the OpRegen clinical data presented to date, which is suggestive of clinically meaningful benefits, especially in earlier stage disease dry-AMD patients. Moreover, the strategic collaborations we announced for OPC1 and VAC reflect our commitment to a comprehensive asset management approach and add external validation to the potential of our platform to create positive outcomes for patients.”

Last month, Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Kristen Kluska reiterated a price target of $6 (176.5% upside potential) and a Buy rating on the stock.

Kluska believes that the company’s efforts to evaluate OpRegen for the treatment of dry-AMD with geographic atrophy, OPC1 for spinal cord injuries, and VAC2 for cancer, have “demonstrated transformational benefits” across its two lead programs.

These initiatives along with solid execution could lead to upside potential in shares over the next 12 months, the analyst added.

Consensus among analysts is a Strong Buy based on 5 Buys and 1 Hold. The average analyst price target stands at $4.75 and implies upside potential of 118.9% to current levels. Shares have gained 152.3% over the past year.

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