Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ARNA - Free Report) incurred loss of $1.46 per share for the third quarter of 2019, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $1.36 as well as the year-ago quarterly loss of 70 cents.
Moreover, Arena’s total revenues of $1.4 million in the reported quarter plunged 62.2% year over year. However, the top line beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.04 million. Revenues included $0.8 million of royalty revenues and $0.5 million of collaboration revenues.
Shares of Arena have increased 23.8% so far this year compared with the industry’s 0.2% rise.
Research & development (R&D) expenses escalated 109% from the prior-year level to $60.3 million.
General and administrative expenses surged 89.7% to $20.4 million from the year-ago figure.
Arena’s pipeline currently consists of two key candidates, namely etrasimod (autoimmune diseases) and olorinab (pain and fibrotic diseases).
Etrasimod (APD334) is presently in mid-stage development for ulcerative colitis. In June, Arena dosed the first patient in the pivotal phase III ELEVATE UC 52 stud,y evaluating etrasimod for treating moderately-to-severely active ulcerative colitis ("UC").
The study is part of the ELEVATE UC registrational program, which comprises two pivotal studies to evaluate etrasimod in UC patients. The company has plans to initiate ELEVATE UC 12, a 12-week induction study, in the second half of 2020.
Notably, etrasimod has the potential to be developed for additional indications beyond ulcerative colitis. The company initiated dosing in the phase IIb ADVISE study to evaluate the candidate for atopic dermatitis in October. It is planning to start a phase IIb/III CULTIVATE study for treating patients with Crohn's disease by 2019-end
A phase II CAPTIVATE study is evaluating another candidate, olonarib (APD371), as a treatment for abdominal pain associated with irritable bowel syndrome.
We would like to remind investors that in January 2019, Arena out-licensed the global rights to its pulmonary arterial hypertension candidate ralinepag to United Therapeutics, Inc. (UTHR - Free Report) . The company received an upfront payment of $800 million and is eligible to receive up to $400 million as potential milestone fees and tiered low double-digit royalties on the net sales of ralinepag from United Therapeutics. The agreement provided Arena with funds for continuing development of its clinical and pre-clinical studies.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Arena currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
A couple of better-ranked stocks in the biotech sector are Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (VRTX - Free Report) and Alkermes plc (ALKS - Free Report) . Both stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Vertex’s earnings per share estimates have moved up from $4.58 to $4.81 for 2019 and from $6.03 to $6.62 for 2020 in the past 30 days. The company delivered a positive earnings surprise in all the trailing four quarters, with the average being 17.59%. Share price of the company has increased 18.2% so far this year.
Estimates for Alkermes have moved up from earnings of 36 cents to 52 cents for 2019 and from a loss of 11 cents to earnings of 42 cents for 2020 in the past 30 days. The company pulled off a positive earnings surprise in all the last four quarters, with the average being 236.8%.
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