Back to top

The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Sanofi, Pfizer, Merck KGaA, Novartis and Biogen

Read MoreHide Full Article


For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – September 14, 2012 – announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include Sanofi (SNY - Free Report) , Pfizer (PFE - Free Report) , Merck KGaA , Novartis (NVS - Free Report) and Biogen Idec (BIIB - Free Report) .


Get the most recent insight from Zacks Equity Research with the free Profit from the Pros newsletter:

Here are highlights from Thursday’s Analyst Blog:


Sanofi MS Drug Gets Approval


Sanofi (SNY - Free Report) and its subsidiary Genzyme recently announced that their oral candidate for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (RMS), Aubagio (teriflunomide), has received US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval. The FDA approved Aubagio as a once-daily treatment for patients with RMS. Aubagio is currently under regulatory review in the EU.

FDA approval came in on encouraging data from a pivotal phase III study (TEMSO) in patients with RMS. The TEMSO phase III study evaluated Aubagio in two dosage strengths, 7mg and 14mg. Patients in both 7mg and 14mg Aubagio dosage arms demonstrated a 31% reduction in annualized relapse rate compared to placebo. Additionally, the company presented positive results from the phase III TOWER trial, which was conducted on 1,169 patients with RMS.

However, we note that in the TENERE trial, reported in December 2011, Aubagio failed to show statistical superiority over Pfizer/Merck KGaA’s (PFE - Free Report) / Rebif. There are two more studies in progress, namely TOPIC and TERACLES.

Competition in the oral multiple sclerosis market will be intense and Aubagio needs to demonstrate superior efficacy and tolerability to gain share. Novartis’ (NVS - Free Report) Gilenya already has a lead in the oral MS market with the product being approved in September 2010. Another major competitor could be Biogen Idec’s (BIIB - Free Report) BG-12, which is currently under regulatory review in the US and EU.

Another RMS candidate, Lemtrada (alemtuzumab), in Sanofi’s portfolio, suffered a setback last month when the FDA issued a refuse-to-file letter in relation to its marketing application. Though the FDA has not asked for any additional studies, Sanofi will have to rework on the presentation of the data. Sanofi plans to work with the FDA and resubmit the marketing application as early as possible.

A marketing application for Lemtrada for RMS was also filed with the European Medicines Agency (EMA), which has been accepted for regulatory review.

We currently have a Neutral recommendation on Sanofi. The stock carries a Zacks #3 Rank (Hold rating) in the short run.



Want more from Zacks Equity Research? Subscribe to the free Profit from the Pros newsletter:

About Zacks Equity Research

Zacks Equity Research provides the best of quantitative and qualitative analysis to help investors know what stocks to buy and which to sell for the long-term.

Continuous coverage is provided for a universe of 1,150 publicly traded stocks. Our analysts are organized by industry which gives them keen insights to developments that affect company profits and stock performance. Recommendations and target prices are six-month time horizons.

Zacks "Profit from the Pros" e-mail newsletter provides highlights of the latest analysis from Zacks Equity Research. Subscribe to this free newsletter today:

About Zacks is a property of Zacks Investment Research, Inc., which was formed in 1978 by Leon Zacks. As a PhD from MIT Len knew he could find patterns in stock market data that would lead to superior investment results. Amongst his many accomplishments was the formation of his proprietary stock picking system; the Zacks Rank, which continues to outperform the market by nearly a 3 to 1 margin. The best way to unlock the profitable stock recommendations and market insights of Zacks Investment Research is through our free daily email newsletter; Profit from the Pros. In short, it's your steady flow of Profitable ideas GUARANTEED to be worth your time! Register for your free subscription to Profit from the Pros at

Visit for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

Follow us on Twitter:

Join us on Facebook:

Disclaimer: Past performance does not guarantee future results. Investors should always research companies and securities before making any investments. Nothing herein should be construed as an offer or solicitation to buy or sell any security.

Media Contact
Zacks Investment Research

800-767-3771 ext. 9339


In-Depth Zacks Research for the Tickers Above

Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report FREE:

Sanofi (SNY) - free report >>

Pfizer Inc. (PFE) - free report >>

Novartis AG (NVS) - free report >>

Biogen Inc. (BIIB) - free report >>

More from Zacks Press Releases

You May Like