Shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. (VRTX: Quote) gained almost 7 percent in extended trade on Monday after the company reported loss for the second quarter that narrowed from last year on strong sales of its drugs for hepatitis C and cystic fibrosis. In addition, the company announced positive results from an early-stage study of another hepatitis C drug called ALS-2200.
Revenues for the second quarter includes net product revenues of about $327.7 million from hepatitis C drug Incivek or telaprevir, and about $45.5 million from sales of cystic fibrosis drug Kalydeco or ivacaftor. This compares to total product revenues of $74.54 million in the year-ago period.
Royalty revenues for the quarter more than tripled to $33.48 million, while collaborative revenues declined 61 percent to $11.55 million.
Vertex's second-quarter net loss was $64.93 million or $0.31 per share, narrower than loss of $174.07 million or $0.85 per share in the year-ago period.
Excluding items, adjusted earnings for the quarter were $99.76 million or $0.46 per share, compared to adjusted loss of $136.37 million or $0.67 per share in the prior-year quarter.
On average, sixteen analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report earnings of $0.59 per share for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.
Revenues for the quarter more than tripled to $418.31 million from $114.42 million in the same period last year, yet missed analysts' consensus estimate of $472.16 million.
Looking ahead to fiscal 2012, Vertex lowered its sales outlook for Incivek. The company now expects full-year Incivek net revenues of $1.1 billion to $1.25 billion, compared to the prior guidance of $1.5 billion to $1.7 billion.
The company noted that the revised outlook reflects the recent downward trend in the number of patients initiating treatment within the hepatitis C market.
Additionally, Vertex provided updates on several ongoing and planned trials in cystic fibrosis, hepatitis C, rheumatoid arthritis and other diseases.
Separately, Vertex announced positive viral kinetic data for ALS-2200 - a nucleotide analogue in development for the treatment of hepatitis C. The company said the drug was well-tolerated and showed a median 4.54 log10 reduction in hepatitis C virus RNA after seven days of dosing with 200 mg of ALS-2200 once daily.
Based on the data, Vertex plans to start Phase 2 studies of 12-week all-oral regimens including ALS-2200 in people with genotype 1 hepatitis C, pending discussions with regulatory agencies.
Robert Kauffman, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at Vertex said, "We're encouraged by the substantial, rapid and consistent viral decline and initial safety results from this study, which make ALS-2200 a very promising part of Vertex's hepatitis C pipeline. ALS-2200, with its high level of antiviral activity, gives us flexibility to explore several combinations of all-oral treatment regimens for hepatitis C."
VRTX closed Monday's regular session at $49.96, up $0.64 or 1.30 percent on a volume of 2.23 million shares. In after-hours, the stock further gained $3.46 or 6.93 percent to $53.42.
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by RTT Staff Writer
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