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Apellis (APLS) Up on Tie-up With Beam for Novel Therapies

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Shares of Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. APLS were up 7.3% on Thursday after the company announced that it has entered into a research collaboration with Cambridge, MA-based Beam Therapeutics Inc. BEAM to discover and develop novel therapies for complement-driven diseases.

In fact, the stock has rallied 18.5% so far this year compared with the industry’s increase of 1.4%.

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With this deal, the companies are looking to leverage Apellis’ expertise in complement, a complex biological system, along with Beam’s proprietary base-editing platform.

The companies will collaborate for an initial period of five years and work on six research programs focused on C3 and other complement targets in the eye, liver and brain.

Per the deal, Apellis will make an upfront payment of $75 million to Beam. Upon exercising the opt-in license rights for each of the programs, Beam will also be entitled to receive development/regulatory and sales-based milestones from Apellis, as well as royalties on net sales, if a product is commercialized from the above collaboration. The initial five-year deal might get extended up to two years.

While Apellis will have the rights to license each of the six programs and will take full responsibility for development, Beam may decide to equally co-develop and co-commercialize the same in the United States.

We remind investors that, in May 2021, Apellis received the FDA approval for its targeted C3 therapy, Empaveli (pegcetacoplan), as a monotherapy treatment for adult patients suffering from paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (“PNH”), a rare blood disorder.

A marketing authorization application seeking approval for Empaveli as treatment for PNH patients is under review in Europe. A potential approval is anticipated in the second half of 2021.

Apart from PNH, Apellis is developing Empaveli for systemic administration in several indications. Empaveli is being evaluated as a monotherapy in two phase III studies, namely, DERBY and OAKS, for treating patients with geographic atrophy. Top-line data from the same is expected in the third quarter of 2021.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Apellis currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the biotech sector are Repligen Corporation RGEN and Trevena, Inc. TRVN, both carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Repligen’s earnings estimates have been revised 18.3% and 14.7% upward for 2021 and 2022, respectively, over the past 60 days. The stock has rallied 4.3% year to date.

Trevena’s loss per share estimates have narrowed 6.4% for 2021 and 3.7% for 2022 over the past 60 days.

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Beam Therapeutics Inc. (BEAM) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Repligen Corporation (RGEN) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Trevena, Inc. (TRVN) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (APLS) : Free Stock Analysis Report

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