BioMarin's Vimizim Gets Canadian Nod

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Health Canada has approved BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc.’s (BMRN) enzyme replacement therapy, Vimizim, for the treatment of patients suffering from mucopolysaccharidosis type IVA (MPS IVA) or morquio A syndrome.

Vimizim was approved on a priority basis by the Canadian regulatory authority. As per BioMarin, Vimizim becomes the first therapy to be cleared in the country for the treatment of this rare genetic disorder in children and adults.

Vimizim is available in the U.S. since Feb 2014. The drug contributed around $0.9 million to BioMarin’s top line in its first few days in the market in the first quarter of 2014. In Apr 2014, the drug was approved in the EU for the same indication. Needless to say, Vimizim has strengthened BioMarin’s existing product portfolio comprising Naglazyme (MPS-VI), Kuvan (phenylketonuria), Aldurazyme (MPS I) and Firdapse (:LEMS).

The company is looking to get Vimizim approved in other countries like Brazil, Australia, Mexico and Japan. Approval in additional markets will boost the drug’s sales potential. BioMarin expects revenues of $60–$70 million from Vimizim by the end of 2014.  

Meanwhile, BioMarin has several pipeline related news lined up in the coming quarters. The company’s pipeline currently consists of candidates like PEG PAL (phase III, PKU), BMN 673 (phase III, breast cancer), BMN 701 (phase II/III, Pompe disease) and BMN 111 (phase II, achondroplasia) among others. We expect investor focus to stay on these candidates, the successful development of which will strengthen BioMarin’s portfolio further.

BioMarin, a biopharmaceutical company, currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked biopharma stocks include Actelion Ltd. (ALIOF), The Medicines Co. (MDCO) and Synergy Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (SGYP). All three stocks carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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