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Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ISIS - Analyst Report) reported a net loss of 10 cents per share in the second quarter of 2013, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 26 cents. Second quarter 2013 loss was, however, wider than the year-ago loss of one cent, with revenues declining and expenses increasing.

Revenues declined 19.5% to $38.1 million. Revenues, however, exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $19 million. Revenues include license fees, milestone-related payments and other payments.

Isis Pharma did not provide any details on Kynamro’s performance – Kynamro was launched by Genzyme in late Mar 2013. Isis Pharma said that it would provide an update on its fourth quarter call on the product’s performance. Kynamro’s sales ramp up could be slow due to the reimbursement process and the process of finding eligible patients. Moreover, competition exists in the form of Aegerion Pharmaceuticals, Inc.’s (AEGR - Analyst Report) Juxtapid.

Operating expenses increased 5.4% in the second quarter of 2013 to $46 million. Research and development expenses increased 5.4% to $42.6 million and general and administrative expenses were up 5.6% to $3.4 million. Expenses are slated to increase slightly in the second half of the year as the company moves ahead with the development of candidates like ISIS-APOCIIIRx (cholesterol management), ISIS-SMNRx (spinal muscular atrophy) and ISIS-TTRRx (transthyretin amyloidosis).

ISIS-APOCIIIRx, which is currently being developed entirely by Isis Pharma, is expected to move into phase III development early next year. The company remains on target to meet or beat its net operating loss guidance of $60 million.

Isis Pharma currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). The next 12-18 months should be catalyst-filled with Isis Pharma expected to report results from several studies.

At present, companies like Biogen Idec (BIIB - Analyst Report) and Gilead Sciences, Inc. (GILD - Analyst Report) look well-positioned with both being Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks. Aegerion also looks attractive with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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