This bank downgraded VRTX on their speculation that VRTX may have to run another Ph 2 trial before an expanded (48 wk as well as 24 wk arm) ph 3 trial.
The medical community is very intransigent and maintains their dogma that it takes 1 year for adaptive immunity to be effective, and also that PI-resistant and -selected mutants are permanently held in patients, that is not the case. The VRTX scientists have shown that the mutant pool is dynamic because the resistant strains are slowly growing and removed by IFN+Riba.
The company initiated a retesting of TVR-non-responders, possibly to answer the question of whether the first-time non-responders would not respond to a subsequent SOC or TVR+SOC .. this is my thinking only.
What new information does the wachovia analyst have? Is he getting information from the company? Is he getting information from the Government (FDA)? I think he is just stirring the waters and creating trading volume and opportunity to pick up vrtx on the cheap during a period of weak sentiment.
My broker shows 21 analysts following Vertex, with 4 strong buys, 5 buys, 11 holds and one sell. No matter Wachovia, that is a positive outlook.
My take on the Wachovia call. Wachovia has no special insight on the FDA or vertex, rather they are taking a low-risk gamble. Analysts know that no one really remembers bad calls and overall performance reporting of analysts is medicore and manipulated. But people do remember good calls and you can publicize them to show how smart you are. So, Wachovia is taking a flyer that Vertex will have some mediocre news out of their FDA discussions and they will look like geniuses.
My take is that Vertex will have major news in January connected to the FDA and Prove 3. All of the telaprevir arm will have finshed treatment and EOT will be available as will svr 12 or 24 for many of the patients. This data will likely have a great influence on FDA discussions regarding the route to approval.