Maxim ups Abeona price target to $35

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Maxim Group raised its price target for Abeona Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ABEO) to $35 from $17, citing advances in the gene therapy space and comparatives to competitor, AveXis.

“Given the valuation gap between these two companies, we see significant upside in Abeona,” writes analyst Jason McCarthy.

The differences lay in stage of development, he said, noting that AveXis has a $3.1-billion market cap and has had safety and efficacy data in patients with Spinal Muscular Atrophy for well over a year and is now in a pivotal trial.

Abeona is at an earlier clinical stage, with positive data in a handful of patients with Sanfilippo syndrome at six months, and a market cap of $700-million.

Mr. McCarthy said that Abeona’s Phase 1/2 study could expand to a pivotal trial in 2018. Abeona also is building the first commercial gene therapy manufacturing facility in Ohio, a global resource, and the company has a collaboration with Brammer Bio for commercial AAV vector process development and scale up, he added.