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Arena (ARNA) Q1 Earnings Beat Estimates, Etrasimod Progresses

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Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ARNA - Free Report) incurred a loss of $1.98 per share in the first quarter of 2021, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $2.19. The company had incurred loss of $2.00 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Arena recorded no revenues in the reported quarter. The Zacks Consensus Estimates for revenues was pegged at $1 million. The company had recorded revenues of $0.3 million in the year-ago quarter.

Shares of Arena have lost 16.3% so far this year compared with the industry’s 6% decrease.

Quarter in Details

Research & development (R&D) expenses escalated 30.6% from the prior-year level to $102.5 million, primarily as a result of the progress of its pipeline candidate, etrasimod, to the next phase of clinical development.

Selling, general and administrative expenses increased 11.7% from the year-ago figure to $29.5 million.

The company ended the quarter with approximately $1.1 billion in cash, cash equivalents and investments balance, same as of Sep 30, 2020.

Pipeline Update

In March, Arena announced that a mid-stage study evaluating its cannabinoid receptor 2 agonist candidate, olorinab, in patients with abdominal pain due to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) failedto meet the primary endpoint. Further development of the candidate is now subject to regulatory approval.

Arena has another candidate, etrasimod, in its pipeline that is being developed for multiple indications in separate clinical studies. It also has two early-stage candidates, ADP418 and temanogrel.

Etrasimod is presently in late-stage development for ulcerative colitis. Arena is evaluating the candidate in the pivotal phase III ELEVATE UC 52 study and another phase III study — ELEVATE UC 12 — as a treatment for moderately-to-severely active ulcerative colitis ("UC"). Top-line data from both studies are expected in the first quarter of 2022.

During the first quarter, the company initiated a phase IIb study — VOYAGE — to evaluate etrasimod in patients with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE).

The company is also evaluating the candidate in the phase IIb/III CULTIVATE study in patients with Crohn's disease. A phase II study is evaluating etrasimod in alopecia areata (AA) patients. The company is advancing the candidate to a phase III registrational program to evaluate it as a potential treatment for atopic dermatitis.

The temanogrel program was announced in January at the JP Morgan Health Care Conference. It will be developed for treating coronary microvascular obstruction disease. A phase II study is under planning.

Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Quote

Zacks Rank and Stocks to Consider

Arena currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks from the drug/biotech sector are Atea Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (AVIR - Free Report) , Kiniksa Pharmaceuticals, Ltd. (KNSA - Free Report) and Nabriva Therapeutics AG (NBRV - Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Atea’s earnings per share estimates have moved up from $3.79 to $8.34 for 2021 and from $16.76 to $17.25 for 2022 in the past 30 days. The stock has soared 757.3% in the past year.

Kiniksa’s loss per share estimates narrowed from $2.70 to $2.62 for 2021 and from $2.40 to $2.07 for 2022 in the past 30 days.

Nabriva’s loss per share estimates narrowed from $2.03 to $1.95 for 2021 and from $1.35 to $1.22 for 2022 in the past 30 days. The company delivered an earnings surprise of 46.50%, on average, in the last four quarters.

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