Endocyte, Inc. (ECYT - Free Report) incurred a loss of 16 cents per share in the first quarter of 2018 narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 19 cents. The figure was narrower than the year-ago loss of 27 cents.
The company earned collaboration revenues of $0.02 million in the reported quarter.
Shares of the company moved up 8.6% on Wednesday following the release. Over a year, Endocyte’s shares have rallied 173.9%, outperforming the industry’s decline of 2%.
Research and development (R&D) expenses fell 33.8% year over year to $5.3 million, courtesy of the workforce reduction as part of the company’s restructuring plan, and the discontinuation of certain research and development activities.
General and administrative expenses were almost flat year over year at $3.8 million.
The company’s key pipeline candidate is 177Lu-PSMA-617 ,a first-in-class radioligand and therapeutic (RLT) that targets prostate-specific membrane antigen. The company acquired exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize 177Lu-PSMA-617 from ABX GmbH in October 2017. The candidate holds more than $1 billion market opportunity and its development is now the priority of the company.
Along with the earnings report, the company announced updated encouraging data on 30 patients with PSMA-positive metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) treated with 177Lu-PSMA-617 from the ongoing phase II study. The data was published in The Lancet Oncology. The study showed that treatment with 177Lu-PSMA-617 led to longer median overall survival, longer median prostate specific antigen progression-free survival, and higher RECIST response rates in patients as compared with the previously presented data. The company expects to report new data at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in June from the trial’s expansion to 50 patients..
During the quarter, the company also finalized a phase III VISION study design evaluating177Lu-PSMA-617 in patients with PSMA-positive mCRPC following a successful End of Phase II meeting with the FDA.
The company expects to enroll the first patient in the VISION study in 2018.
During the quarter, Endocyte also entered into an agreement with ITM Isotopen Technologien München AG, a specialized radiopharmaceutical company, where the latter will provide clinical supply of no-carrier-added Lutetium for the manufacturing of 177Lu-PSMA-617.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Endocyte carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
A few better-ranked stocks from the same space worth considering are Ligand Pharmaceuticals (LGND - Free Report) , Enanta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ENTA - Free Report) and Catabasis Pharmaceuticals (CATB - Free Report) . While Ligand sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Enanta and Catabasis carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Ligand’s earnings per share estimates have moved up from $4.20 to $4.43 for 2018 over the past 60 days. The company delivered a positive earnings surprise in all of the trailing four quarters, with an average beat of 31.79%. The company’s shares have rallied 25.4% year to date.
Enanta’s earnings per share estimates have moved up from 86 cents to $2.48 for 2018 over the past 30 days.. The company delivered a positive earnings surprise in three of the trailing four quarters, with an average beat of 372.02%. The stock has rallied 68.2% so far this year.
Catabasis’ loss estimates narrowed from $1.09 to 90 cents for 2018 and from $1.76 to $1.43 for 2019, in the past 60 days. The company came up with a positive earnings surprise in all the preceding four quarters, with an average beat of 14.56%. The stock has rallied 9.4% so far this year.