HCW ups Sophiris Bio PT to $10 from $4.30

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H.C. Wainwright raised its price target for Sophiris Bio (NASDAQ:SPHS) to $10 from $4.30, citing autopsy results that found a patient deathin its Phase 2b trial for the treatment of localized prostate cancer was not linked to its drug topsalysin or the procedure. The stock rose almost 25% to $3.19 on August 29.

Analyst Joseph Pantginis writes that with the overhang removed, the latest informationallows “focus to return to our underlying investment case on Sophiris, subsequent to the positive Phase 2b data announced on June 25. The goal is to now move the program into a pivotal program.”

Mr. Pantginis said data showed that six-month biopsy results achieved a 29% (10/35) clinical response rate. Of the 10 responders, six achieved complete ablation of their targeted lesion, and 37% (13/35) achieved partial responses.

 Follow-up data from all patients, including 10 patients who received a second administration of topsalysin, are expected in the fourth quarter of 2018.

He said a key investment driver for the product is that it could provide a powerful new option to patients by delaying or even preventing more aggressive treatments. 

“We believe that the safety profile may allow it to carve out a niche between non-invasive therapeutic options and invasive surgical options, while also reducing or preventing the off-target effect,” he added.

Stephen Kilmer