Leerink Positive on Aurinia Pharma (AUPH) Following Presentation of Data from Voclosporin Phase 2b in Lupus Nephritis

November 17, 2016 6:24 AM EST
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Leerink affirms Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AUPH) at Outperform with a price target of $7 after the company highlighted additional findings from its global Phase IIb AURA study of voclosporin in the treatment of lupus nephritis (LN) at the American College of Rheumatology and Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals (ACR/ARHP) Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. during the Late-Breaking News session on November 15, 2016.

The firm commented Thursday: Full data from the AURA study presented at the American College of Rheumatology and Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals (ACR/ARHP) showed that the response provided by voclosporin was rapid, with most patients achieving complete response (CR) at or before the eighth week of the trial.

The AURA study was not only the first global lupus nephritis (LN) study to meet its primary endpoint, but the study also achieved all of its secondary endpoints. While adverse events were higher in the voclosporin arms, this is consistent with increased immunosuppression. We believe this is a standard feature of existing LN regimens which often fail and a necessary price to pay for a higher likelihood of achieving a CR, which has been associated with much improved kidney survival.

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