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Catalyst (CPRX) Posts In-Line Q4 Loss, Pipeline in Progress

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Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. CPRX reported a loss of 6 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2017, on par with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The reported loss was wider than the year-ago loss of 5 cents.

Being a development-stage company, Catalyst Pharma does not have any approved product in its portfolio yet. Hence, the company did not generate any revenues in the quarter.

So far this year, Catalyst Pharma’s shares have rallied 74.2% compared with the industry’s gain of 4.4%.

Quarter in Detail

Research and development (R&D) expenses were $3.4 million, up 20.7% from the year-ago quarter. The costs included expenses related to ongoing studies and trials for Firdapse, costs associated with the Firdapse Expanded Access Program and expenses pertaining to the CPP-115 and generic Sabril programs.

General and administrative expenses totaled $2.1 million, up 41% from the year-ago quarter.

Pipeline Update

Currently, Catalyst Pharma has two candidates under development — Firdapse and CPP-115.

The company made significant progress with respect to the second phase III study evaluating Firdapse for the treatment of Lambert-Eaton Myasthenic Syndrome. Catalyst Pharma also successfully completed the required abuse liability studies that confirmed that Firdapse does not exhibit abuse potential.

The company also expects to enroll patients in its phase III study for MuSK antibody positive myasthenia gravis in the first half of 2018 and the proof-of-concept study for spinal muscular atrophy Type 3 in the second quarter of 2018.

Meanwhile, the company is on track to resubmit its new drug application for Firdapse in the first quarter of 2018 and is actively engaged in pre-commercialization activities for a potential launch of the same.

The company expects to complete enrollment in the phase III CMS (CMS-001) study before 2018-end and report top-line results it in the first quarter of 2019.

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Quote

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Catalyst Pharma has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A few better-ranked stocks from the same space are Regeneron REGN, Ligand Pharmaceuticals LGND and Enanta Pharma ENTA. While Regeneronsports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Ligand andEnanta Pharma carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Regeneron’s earnings per share estimates have moved up from $18.65 to $18.68 and from $21.56 to $21.60 for 2018 and 2019, respectively, in the last 30 days. The company pulled off a positive earnings surprise in three of the last four quarters, the average beat being 9.15%.

Ligand’s earnings per share estimates rose from $3.78 to $4.20 and $4.75 to $5.32 for 2018 and 2019, respectively, over the last 30 days. The company delivered positive earnings surprises in three of the trailing four quarters, the average beat being 24.88%. The company’s shares have rallied 64.6% in a year’s time.

Enanta Pharma delivered a positive earnings surprise in three of the last four quarters, with an average beat of 373.1%. The company’s shares have gained 193.6% over a year.

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