NEW YORK, NY / ACCESSWIRE / September 19, 2018 / Viking Therapeutics and Realm Therapeutics were big winners in the biotech arena on Tuesday with both shares seeing big gains. Viking shares blasted north on positive phase 2 trial results while Realm announced earlier in the week that it has hired MTS Health Partners LP as an adviser as part of its strategic review that may include the potential sales of the company.
RDI Initiates Coverage on:
Viking Therapeutics, Inc.
Realm Therapeutics Plc
Viking Therapeutics, Inc. shares closed up a little over 87% on Tuesday with around 51 million shares traded. The stock catapulted to a new 52-week high of $24.00 as traders reacted to positive results from a mid-stage clinical trial. Viking's phase 2 trial for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), for VK2809, showed reductions in LDL-C and liver fat content, which were the trial’s primary and secondary endpoints, respectively. The 12-week study tested Viking's VK2809 against a placebo in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and elevated LDL-C, or "bad cholesterol". "We are encouraged by the preliminary efficacy and safety profile VK2809 has shown in this study," stated Brian Lian, Ph.D., the CEO of Viking. "VK2809's effect on liver fat at 12 weeks appears to exceed all other oral agents currently in development for NASH, supporting our view that VK2809 has a best-in-class profile. Based on published data from multiple studies, we anticipate that these liver fat reductions would result in longer-term histologic benefit. In addition, the improvement in lipid parameters observed in this study suggests potential benefits in cardiovascular health, an important consideration in this population. We look forward to pursuing further development of VK2809 in NASH."
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Realm Therapeutics Plc shares closed up nearly 107% on Tuesday on a lackluster 33,000 shares traded roughly. The company announced earlier in the week that it has hired MTS Health Partners LP as an adviser as part of its strategic review that may include the potential sales of the company. The company recently revealed results of a phase 2 trial of its Atopic Dermatitis treatment that did not meet its threshold for continued investment and Realm Therapeutics has discontinued all of its drug development programs. In a press release on Monday, the company's CEO Alex Martin remarked, "A full analysis of our Atopic Dermatitis study results showed a statistically significant efficacy signal in a sub-population treated with the higher dose formulation. However, the overall study results did not meet our threshold for continued investment and, as such, we have decided to discontinue all of our drug development programs, which are all based on the Company's proprietary technology." He added, "We have engaged MTS Health Partners to act as an advisor to assist us in exploring potential strategic alternatives, as we seek to maximize the value of our assets including the growing Vashe® Wound care royalty stream and our FDA 510(k)-cleared anti-itch hydrogel, which was formerly marketed as Aurstat™. Previously, we successfully developed and sold businesses focused on supermarket retail and endoscope decontamination, both of which were based on our proprietary HOCl technology. The Company may look to in-license or acquire further assets or undertake a broader corporate transaction."
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