Back to top

Analyst Blog

This page is temporarily not available.  Please check later as it should be available shortly. If you have any questions, please email customer support at support@zacks.com or call 800-767-3771 ext.  9339.

ViroPharma Incorporated recently announced results from a phase II study of its candidate VP20621 (non-toxigenic Clostridium difficile), which is being developed to prevent recurrent C. difficile infections (CDI), a gastrointestinal infection.

The study (n=168) was conducted over 14 days wherein VP20621 was administered orally in adults previously treated for C. difficile- associated diarrhea (CDAD)  with oral vancomycin or metronidazole.  The patients were given either placebo or VP20621 after they completed their antibiotic treatment to evaluate the tolerability of the latter.

Results from the study revealed statistically significant reductions in CDI recurrence in patients treated with VP20621 compared to those in the placebo arm. We note that at its inv day in Sep 2012, the company had designated VP20621 as a non-core asset. However, encouraged by the data, ViroPharma plans to seek a partner for the further development and subsequent commercialization of the candidate. We note that ViroPharma already has an approved drug, Vancocin indicated for the treatment of CDAD.

Hence, ViroPharma plans to complete the evaluation of the phase II data to determine the pathway for future development.

Nevertheless, ViroPharma also has maribavir in its pipeline, which is being developed for the treatment of cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections in transplant recipients. Other candidates include VP20629, which is being developed for the treatment of Friedreich's Ataxia.

Meanwhile, the growth story for ViroPharma revolves around Cinryze, which is approved in the US for routine prophylaxis against angioedema attacks in adolescent and adult patients with hereditary angioedema (HAE). Cinryze accounted for 76% of total sales in 2012.

Although we are positive on the growth prospects of Cinrzye, we are concerned about the company’s increasing dependence on the same going forward.

ViroPharma currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Pharma stocks, which currently look more attractive, include Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (VRTX - Snapshot Report), UCB SA (UCBJF) and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (ALNY - Analyst Report). All three carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

 

Please login to Zacks.com or register to post a comment.

New to Zacks?

Start Here

Zacks Investment Research

Close

Are you a new Zacks Member or a visitor to Zacks.com?

Top Zacks Features

Learn more

Start for as little as $4.50 per trade.

My Portfolio Tracker

Is it Time to Sell?

One of the most important steps you can take today is to set up your portfolio tracker on Zacks.com. Once you do, you'll be notified of major events affecting your stocks and/or funds with daily email alerts.

More Zacks Resources

Zacks Rank Home - Evaluate your stocks and use the Zacks Rank to eliminate the losers and keep the winners.

Mutual Fund Rank Home - Evaluate your funds with the Mutual Fund Rank for both your personal and retirement funds.

Stock/Mutual Fund Screening - Find better stocks and mutual funds. The ones most likely to beat the market and provide a positive return.

My Portfolio - Track your Portfolio and find out where your stocks/mutual funds stack up with the Zacks Rank.

Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers for Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers

Company Symbol Price %Chg
DIXIE GROUP DXYN 15.84 +7.90%
BOFL HOLDING BOFI 85.30 +4.97%
RAMBUS INC RMBS 12.31 +4.41%
VIPSHOP HOLD VIPS 148.73 +4.35%
NETFLIX INC NFLX 345.74 +4.32%