Healthcare Review: Galectin Therapeutics, Cardiome Pharma, pSivida, Ampio Pharmaceuticals, Cell Therapeutics Print E-mail
By Staff and Wire Reports   
Monday, 07 October 2013 14:04
U.S. stocks dropped on Monday as the partial U.S. government shutdown dragged on with no signs politicians were willing to relax positions over the debt-ceiling limit or budget impasse. Republican House Speaker John Boehner vowed on Sunday not to raise the U.S. debt ceiling without a "serious conversation" about what is driving the debt, while Democrats said it was irresponsible and reckless to raise the possibility of a U.S. default.

Ascendiant Capital Markets starts Galectin Therapeutics ($GALT +6.8%) at Buy, calling the company "an intriguing speculative small cap investment story." Price target is $13, representing an 18% upside from Friday's close.

Shares of Cardiome Pharma ($CRME +18.2%) are surging on huge volume. Data from an observational, retrospective study shows 70% of 251 recent-onset AF patients who received Brinavess treatments responded with conversion to sinus rhythm. Median time was 11 minutes. Median ER time for converted Brinavess patients was 6.5 hours."The finding that 75% of successfully treated BRINAVESS patients remained in normal sinus rhythm after a one year follow-up period - was an extremely interesting and important finding that requires further investigation," the study's principal investigator notes.

pSivida ($PSDV +8.4%) trades markedly higher on heavy volume. The shares look to be getting a lift from SA contributor Bob's Stocks, who says the stock is worth "way north of $15/share" based on the company's share of revenues from the DME treatment Iluvien. The author is also "95% sure" that the company's upcoming (October 17) PDUFA meeting with the FDA will go well and calls the polymide tube's chances of U.S. approval "a slam dunk."

Ampio Pharmaceuticals ($AMPE +3.4%) reports interim results from a dose finding trial of Optina in DME. Ultimately, the IDRC recommended the continuation of the trial as "it was determined that there was a treatment dosage that was demonstrating a potentially beneficial anatomic effect [and] there were no significant safety concerns."

Cell Therapeutics ($CTIC) reaches agreement with the FDA for the Special Protocol Assessment (SPA) of the second Phase III trial of the company's Pacritinib treatment for myelofibrosis, a chronic bone marrow disease. Under the SPA, the sides have agreed the design of the trial, called PERSIST-2, endpoints and the planned statistical analysis approach.Cell Therapeutics expects to start the 300-patient study by the end of the year. The company began the first Phase III trial in January.

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