BTIG starts KalVista at buy

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BTIG launched coverage of KalVista Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:KALV) with a “buy” rating and $18 price target. The stock closed at $6.59 on August 30.

KalVista is focused on developing a portfolio of oral plasma kallikrein inhibitors for the treatment of hereditary angioedema (HAE) and other uses, and on developing both intravitreal and oral plasma kallikrein inhibitor molecules for diabetic macular edema (DME).

Analyst Robert Hazlett writes that plasma kallikrein is a “validated therapeutic target in HAE, and is both emerging and promising in DME.”

KalVista’s KVD818 and KVD900 are highly-selective oral plasma kallikrein inhibitors that are currently in early phase trials for HAE. The company also is developing other selective kallikrein inhibitors with differing characteristics to address other aspects of the HAE condition.

The company’s DME molecules include KVD0001, an intravitreally administered plasma kallikrein inhibitor that has completed Phase 1 and generated promising data. It is expected to initiate Phase 2 trials in 2017.