Abbott (ABT - Analyst Report) recently released positive data from the EVEREST II (Endovascular Valve Edge-to-Edge REpair STudy) High Surgical Risk cohort.
The study evaluated Abbott’s MitraClip system for the treatment of mitral regurgitation (MR) - a common form of heart valve insufficiency.
The device is delivered to the heart through a blood vessel in the leg (the femoral vein). Furthermore, the MitraClip system aims to bring down MR by clipping together the leaflets of the mitral valve so that the heart can pump blood in a more efficient manner.
We note that Abbott’s MitraClip system is currently under review for approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). An amended filing was submitted to the FDA in Dec 2011, which is expected to be reviewed by a FDA panel in the first half of 2013.
The MitraClip system received CE mark (mandatory confirmation for products placed in the European market) in 2008 and is marketed in Europe and in parts of Asia and Latin America.
The study suggested that treatment with the MitraClip device provides a new option to patients, who are at a high risk of open mitral valve surgery, to return to normal activities along with a reduction in hospitalization for heart failure.
Having separated its proprietary pharmaceutical business into a separate company in Jan 2013, the diagnostics business presents a key opportunity for growth to Abbott. The business primarily focuses on the development of next-generation instruments and other advanced technologies, expansion in emerging markets along with margin improvement.
Abbott currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Large-cap pharma companies that currently look attractive include Eli Lilly (LLY - Analyst Report) ), Novo Nordisk (NVO - Analyst Report) and Shire (SHPG - Analyst Report). All three carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).