bluebird bio (BLUE) PT Raised to $80 at Leerink Partners
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Leerink Partners analyst Michael Schmidt reiterated an Outperform rating and raised his price target on bluebird bio (NASDAQ: BLUE) to $80.00 (from $67.00) saying they are positive on BLUE's outlook and stock.
Schmidt commented, "While development of key product LentiGlobin in transfusion-dependent beta-thalassemia (TDT) and severe sickle cell disease (SCD) has been more complex than initially anticipated, we believe BLUE is well positioned (and capitalized) to overcome remaining technical hurdles. Lenti-D (CCALD) represents a small but compelling near-term commercial opp'ty for BLUE, while the company's CAR-T pipeline is still underappreciated by investors, but could emerge as an important growth driver. Shares are up 54% since we initiated coverage earlier this year (LINK) (vs. 4% for the NBI). Today we're increasing our PT from $67 to $80/share as we see the clinical development and regulatory path for BLUE's pipeline products incrementally more de-risked. Yesterday at its R&D day, mgmt. provided key updates including agreement with FDA and EMA on the regulatory path to approval for LentiGlobin in TDT across all genotypes. In addition, manufacturing and treatment protocol changes which have been implemented to optimize patient outcomes in TDT and SCD increase the probability of success of these programs in our view. Next updates from ongoing LentiGlobin trials HGB-204, -205, and -206 (under the existing manufacturing process) in TDT and SCD are expected at ASH, which could substantiate or improve upon initial results from ASH 2015, in more patients and with longer term follow-up. First clinical data from CAR-T product bb2121 (anti-BCMA) in multiple myeloma are expected in 1H17. The Lenti-D Phase III "Starbeam" trial is expected to complete in 2H17."
Shares of bluebird bio closed at $65.24 yesterday.
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