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Novo Nordisk's (NVO) Share Price Rises YTD on Strong Pipeline

Zacks Equity Research

Shares of Novo Nordisk A/S NVO have increased 6.4% year to date against  the industry’s decline of 0.2%.

Novo Nordisk has a strong presence in the Diabetes care market, with a global market share of 27.9%. Also, the company has a solid footing in the total insulin and modern and new-generation insulin market, with a global market share of 46.4% and 45.2%, respectively. The company has one of the broadest diabetes portfolios in the industry. Solid performance from Tresiba, Victoza, Ozempic, Xultophy and Saxenda boosted sales in 2018.

The company is making efforts to develop new treatments for diabetes, which is its core area of expertise.

In February 2019, the FDA approved Novo Nordisk’s biologics license application (BLA) for Esperoct (turoctocog alfa pegol, N8-GP) to treat haemophilia A in adults and children. The drug is approved for the routine prophylactic to reduce the frequency of bleeding episodes, on-demand treatment and control of bleeding episodes plus perioperative management of bleeding in the given patient population. Per the company, due to third-party intellectual property (IP) agreements, it will not be able to launch the drug before 2020 in the United States.

In January 2019, Novo Nordisk initiated a phase I study on LAIsema, the combination of once-weekly insulin LAI287 and once-weekly injectable GLP-1 Ozempic (semaglutide). The study will investigate single-dose pharmacokinetics of LAIsema in a fixed ratio compared with LAI287 and semaglutide given separately to people with type II diabetes.

In December 2018, Novo Nordisk and Staten Biotechnology entered a collaboration and an exclusive option agreement to develop novel therapeutics for the treatment of hypertriglyceridaemia. Per the collaboration agreement, the company will provide research and development funding and support to Staten Biotechnology for developing its lead asset, STT-5058, for the treatment of dyslipidaemia.

Novo Nordisk has decided to submit the application for oral semaglutide in 2019, and notified the FDA that it will request priority review of the filing based on a priority review voucher. The company still expects to file for oral semaglutide for EU approval in the first half of 2019.

In April 2019, Gilead Sciences, Inc. GILD and Novo Nordisk announced that both the companies intend to collaborate to develop treatments for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). The companies will initiate a proof-of-concept study combining Novo Nordisk's semaglutide and Gilead's cilofexor (FXR agonist) and firsocostat (ACC inhibitor) for the treatment of patients with NASH.

However, Novo Nordisk is going through a rough patch with several drugs in its portfolio losing patent protection. The company is also facing pricing pressure for some of its drugs.

Moreover, the diabetes market is already crowded with a number of drugs. Merck’s MRK Januvia and Janumet (type II diabetes), Eli Lilly’s LLY Trulicity (type II diabetes), and Sanofi’s Toujeo (type I and II diabetes) are already approved.

Novo Nordisk A/S Price


Novo Nordisk A/S Price | Novo Nordisk A/S Quote

Zacks Rank

Novo Nordisk currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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