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Charles River (CRL) to Aid INADcure in Plasmid DNA Manufacture

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Charles River Laboratories International, Inc. (CRL - Free Report) recently announced a plasmid DNA manufacturing alliance with INADcure Foundation. The collaboration will leverage Charles River’s market-leading contract development and manufacturing organization expertise in High Quality (HQ) plasmid DNA production, to manufacture its leading candidate for Phase I/II clinical trials.

The latest development is expected to strengthen Charles River’s Biologics Testing Solutions business unit offered under the Manufacturing segment. 

About INADcure Foundation

This nonprofit organization intends to support the development of treatments for Infantile Neuroaxonal Dystrophy (“INAD”) and other forms of PLA2G6-related neurodegeneration.

Zacks Investment Research
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Collaboration in Detail

INAD is known to be a progressive neurodegenerative disease, affecting more than 150 children worldwide with a life expectancy of 10 or fewer years. With no known treatment or cure, symptoms of the rare disease include poor motor functions, involuntary eye movements, seizures, hearing loss, and difficulty swallowing and breathing. CRL’s plasmid DNA production, particularly HQ plasmid, combines the key features of Good Manufacturing Practice (“GMP”) manufacture with rapid turnaround times to accelerate the timeline to the clinic.

However, being a critical starting material for many cell and gene therapy therapeutics, the demand for plasmid DNA continues to outstrip supply. Charles River recently announced the opening of a state-of-the-art HQ plasmid manufacturing center of excellence to address these supply shortages and support the growing needs of the cell and gene therapy field.

With the collaboration, Charles River looks forward to helping the foundation deliver breakthrough treatments for INAD-afflicted patients.

Industry Prospects

Per a Research report, the global plasmid DNA manufacturing market was valued at $1.30 billion in 2022 and is expected to witness a CAGR of 17.6% up to 2030.

Recent Developments

In May 2023, Charles River and Wheeler Bio, Inc. announced an agreement to implement the RightSource Platform at Wheeler Bio's CGMP biologics production plant in Oklahoma City. It is expected to begin in-process and release testing by the end of the year after becoming operational in the third quarter of 2023.

Earlier in May, Charles River launched Accugenix NGS Services for Bacterial Identification and Fungal Identification. To enhance its global coverage, CRL also announced partner lab initiatives.

Price Performance

In the past six months, shares of Charles River have increased 0.6% against the industry’s decline of 9.3%.

Zacks Rank and Key Picks

Charles River currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the overall healthcare sector are Penumbra (PEN - Free Report) , Lantheus (LNTH - Free Report) and Neuronetics (STIM - Free Report) . While Penumbra and Lantheus each sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Neuronetics carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Penumbra’s stock has risen 139.2% in the past year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Penumbra’s earnings per share (EPS) has increased from $1.55 to $1.56 for 2023 and remained constant at $2.56 for 2024 in the past 30 days.

PEN’s earnings beat estimates in each of the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 109.42%. In the last reported quarter, the company registered an earnings surprise of 109.09%.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Lantheus’ 2023 EPS has remained constant at $5.60 in the past 30 days. Shares of the company have improved 39% in the past year against the industry’s 27.6% decline.

LNTH’s earnings beat estimates in each of the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 25.77%. In the last reported quarter, the company recorded an earnings surprise of 13.95%.

Estimates for Neuronetics’ loss per share have narrowed from $1.32 to $1.29 for 2023 in the past 30 days. Shares of the company have declined 30.4% in the past year against the industry’s 6.7% growth.

STIM’s earnings beat estimates in each of the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 19.61%. In the last reported quarter, Neuronetics delivered an earnings surprise of 2.56%.

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