Maxim likes ContraVir merger with Ciclofilin

The merger of ContraVir Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:CTRV) with closely-held Ciclofilin Pharmaceuticals strengthens ContraVir’s position in the hepatitis B virus (HBV) space, according to a new report from Maxim Group analyst Jason Kolbert.

The mechanism of action of Ciclofilin’s antiviral asset, CPI-431-32, should be complementary to ContraVir’s CMX157 by inhibiting distinct critical steps in the viral life cycle, he said.

ContraVir also plans to continue its “door and hinge” approach, with CMX157 as a backbone regimen and CPI-431-32 as a combination therapy, he added.

Mr. Kolbert reiterated his “buy” rating and $4 price target for ContraVir. The stock was quoted at 86 cents, down 5 cents, in afternoon trading on Tuesday.