Heron Therapeutics (HRTX): Reiterating Outperform Rating Ahead of 4Q Sustol Launch - Leerink
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Leerink Partners analyst, Jason Gerberry, reiterated his Outperform rating on shares of Heron Therapeutics (NASDAQ: HRTX) ahead of a 4Q Sustol launch in chemo induced nausea & vomiting (CINV). Based on a differentiated label claim, the analyst does not anticipate reimbursement access being an issue and management has articulated a viable strategy for dealing with the lack of a permanent J-Code at launch.
The analyst stated "Overall, we believe HRTX scored enough label wins to support our $350m sales forecast by 2022E". No change to the price target of $33.
Sustol was approved for treatment of patients with acute and delayed symptoms of CINV. One of the important label variables sought by HRTX was to become the only drug in its 5Ht3 receptor antagonist class to be indicated for treatment of the sub-population of patients with delayed HEC, e.g. those patients with delayed symptoms (5-days) who received what is considered a highly emetogenic chemo (HEC) regimen. Patients with delayed MEC (moderately emetogenic chemo) and HEC account for 60% and 20% of competitor Aloxi prescriptions, or 2m units. HRTX effectively got a delayed HEC label claim, although the wording in the package insert reflects a distinction that Sustol is only to be used in HEC regimens where Sustol was studied -- known as AC regimens (anthracycline & cyclophosphamide) and not cisplatin regimens. To put this is further context, approximately 93% of Aloxi usage is in AC-based chemo regimens.
Shares of Heron Therapeutics closed at $20.33 yesterday.
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