Achillion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ACHN) Shares Rose High After The Success Of Drug Hep C Print E-mail
By Josh Gee   
Monday, 22 December 2014 20:04

After the biotech reported that the NS5A drug of Achillion Pharmaceuticals, Inc.(NASDAQ:ACHN Achillion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ACHN) combined with Gilead's Sovaldi scored a quick cure among a small group of hepatitis C patients after only 6 weeks of treatment, the shares of Achillion rose high.

Achillion shares went up more than 16% as company execs touted their "best-in-class" potential and analysts continued to assess the implications of AbbVie's FDA approval on Friday for its cocktail, Viekira Pak.

Since now Gilead and AbbVie have arrived in the market, analysts have begun focusing more on the next wave of therapies looking to compete on price and duration of treatment. Achillion attracted considerable attention with its 100% cure rate in a small 8-week study involving treatment naïve genotype 1 patients with ACH-3102 and Sovaldi last summer. In this new study a combination of the two therapies achieved a 100% cure rate among 12 patients after 6 weeks of therapy, where signs of the virus disappeared within 4 weeks of completing treatment. And that will help to raise the market expectations even more.

Achillion will be required to deal with a clinical hold, which is temporarily chilled red-hot rumor of a potential takeover. The hold, though, was lifted ahead of the early-stage data, and Merck helped to reignite the speculation of a possible takeover after paying $3.9 billion for the rival Idenix. Few biotechs loved to flirt with investors about the prospect of a buyout more than the hepatitis C specialist Achillion.

Dr. David Apelian, the chief medical officer at Achillion said that the data when combined with the Phase II proxy study results will lead them to believe that the doublet regimen of ACH-3102 and ACH-3422 can be a highly competitive, regimen to cure HCV.

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