U.S. Markets closed

Allergan (AGN) and Editas Tie Up to Treat Eye Diseases

Zacks Equity Research

Allergan plc AGN, and Editas Medicine, Inc. EDIT, entered into a strategic research and development agreement. According to the agreement, Allergan will receive exclusive access and the option to license up to five of Editas Medicine's genome-editing ocular programs, including its lead program. Editas Medicine's lead program is being developed for the potential treatment of LCA10, a rare, inherited retinal degenerative disease that appears in childhood and leads to blindness.

Edit’s share price was up around 5% following the news.

Allergan’s share price has decreased 14% year to date, while the Zacks classified Medical-Generic Drugs industry gained 4.2%.

 

Editas Medicine is a leading genome editing company that treats patients with genetically-defined diseases by correcting their disease-causing genes.

Per the agreement, Editas Medicine will receive an upfront payment of $90 million for the development of five candidate programs. The company will also be entitled to receive development and commercial milestones, as well as royalty payments on a per-program basis. On the other hand, Allergan will have the option to license up to five programs and will develop and commercialize the optioned products, subject to Editas' option right to co-develop and co-promote up to two optioned products in the U.S.  

The agreement includes early stage, first-in-class ocular programs targeting serious diseases based on Editas Medicine's CRISPR genome editing platform, including CRISPR/Cas9 and CRISPR/Cpf1. CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) is a dynamic technology that allows researchers to permanently modify genes and has the potential to create medicines with a durable treatment effect.

The technology has the potential to transform the treatment of many genetic and non-genetically derived diseases, including diseases and conditions of the eye. The CRISPR genome editing platform complement’s Allergan’s portfolio which has eye care development programs with large unmet medical need.

Allergan’s focus is on core therapeutic areas like eye care, aesthetics, CNS, GI, anti-infectives, women's health and urology. In 2016, Allergan bought private clinical stage biotechnology companies, RetroSense Therapeutics and ForSight VISION 5, which boosted its eye care pipeline.

Allergan PLC. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Allergan PLC. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Allergan PLC. Quote

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Infinity is a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock. Some other better-ranked stocks in the health care sector include Heska Corporation HSKA and Retrophin, Inc. RTRX. Heska and Retrophin carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Heska’s earnings estimates increased from $1.53 to $1.65 for 2017 and from $1.90 to $2.01 for 2018 over the last 30 days. The company posted a positive earnings surprise in all of the four trailing quarters with an average beat of 291.54%. Its share price increased 30.7% year to date.

Retrophin’s loss estimates narrowed from 85 cents to 72 cents for 2017 and from 67 cents to 53 cents for 2018 over the last 30 days. The company posted a positive earnings surprise in three of the four trailing quarters with an average beat of 80.55%.  

Will You Make a Fortune on the Shift to Electric Cars?

Here's another stock idea to consider. Much like petroleum 150 years ago, lithium power may soon shake the world, creating millionaires and reshaping geo-politics. Soon electric vehicles (EVs) may be cheaper than gas guzzlers. Some are already reaching 265 miles on a single charge.
With battery prices plummeting and charging stations set to multiply, one company stands out as the #1 stock to buy according to Zacks research.
It's not the one you think.

See This Ticker Free >>


Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
 
Allergan PLC. (AGN): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Retrophin, Inc. (RTRX): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Heska Corporation (HSKA): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Editas Medicine, Inc. (EDIT): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.
 
Zacks Investment Research