UPDATE: Bank of America Reiterates Neutral Rating, Raises PT on Idenix Pharmaceuticals
In a report published Monday, Bank of America reiterated its Neutral rating on Idenix Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: IDIX), and slightly raised its price target from $6.00 to $7.00.
Bank of America noted, “Today IDIX announced a non-exclusive collaboration with JNJ to initiate Phase 2 all-oral combination studies for the treatment of HCV for the company's early stage NS5a inhibitor. While the news is consistent with early-Jan feedback from the company of an imminent transaction, it provides IDIX with a critical first step forward to advance IDX719, which had taken a backseat in 2012 during multiple program setbacks for the company's HCV nucs. The first study expected to start in 1Q13 will evaluate IDX719 with JNJ's protease inhibitor TMC-435 and RBV dosed for 12 weeks and will be initiated following a standard drug-drug interaction study; a second combo study with JNJ's non-nuc should follow. These data will provide the first 12-week safety data for IDX719, and will establish whether the IDIX/JNJ combo has any benefits over the similar BMY/JNJ combo already under investigation. If positive, IDX719 could be an important value driver for the IDIX, which is currently primarily valued on the potential royalty stream from GILD's GS-7977. Based on today's news, we are increasing our PO from $6 to $7 to increase IDX719 value per share from $2 to $3; however we see impressive potential upside to valuation on positive results.”
Idenix Pharmaceuticals closed on Friday at $5.48.
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