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Aurinia Pharma Rises Following Updated Mid-Stage Results

Chris Lange

Shares of Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AUPH) saw a handy gain on Friday after the firm presented new data from its mid-stage study in lupus nephritis (LN) during the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR) 2017. The updated data came from the firm's global Phase 2b AURA-LV study.

The company previously reported that its treatment with low dose voclosporin showed statistically improved efficacy over the control arm at both the 24- and 48-week mark, with a doubling of remission rates at 48 weeks compared with the control arm (49% versus 24%).

The data presented at EULAR 2017 demonstrated that over the course of the 48-week trial, patients on voclosporin stayed in remission approximately twice the amount of time as those in the control group. These differences were statistically significant.

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No unexpected safety signals or adverse events were observed, and voclosporin was generally well-tolerated, consistent with what is expected of patients suffering from active LN.

Dr. Vladimir A. Dobronravov, M.D., PhD, DSc, clinical investigator for the study and Vice Director, Research Institute of Nephrology, commented:

Not only have more patients on voclosporin achieved complete remission, but they have done so faster. Patients on low-dose voclosporin are also maintaining remission for a longer duration—nearly twice that of the control group on average. The quicker we can bring patients into remission and keep them there, the more likely we are to delay or even prevent the deleterious effects of prolonged inflammation which can lead to irreversible kidney damage.

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Shares of Aurinia were trading up 3% at $6.12 on Friday, with a consensus analyst price target of $11.25 and a 52-week range of $1.74 to $10.54.

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