Altimmune's (ALT) Astounding Journey From $1 To $20 In Just Few Months

altimmune july09

It has been a banner year so far for Altimmune Inc. (ALT), whose share price has grown a whopping 990 percent year-to-date, thanks to the Company's pipeline progress, including its foray into COVID-19 drug and vaccine development space.

Altimmune is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing treatments for liver disease, immune-modulating therapies, and intranasal vaccines.

The Company's investigational therapeutic program for COVID-19 is T-COVID, an intranasal immune modulator for the treatment of outpatients with early COVID-19. A phase I/II trial of T-COVID is expected to commence enrollment in the coming weeks, with data readout anticipated in the fourth quarter of this year.

The phase I/II trial of T-COVID is funded by the U.S. Army Medical Research & Development Command (USAMRDC).

A vaccine for COVID-19 is also under development by the name AdCOVID, which is under preclinical studies at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). The Company is aiming to advance AdCOVID into phase I trial in the fourth quarter of this year.

Altimmune's lead drug candidate is NasoVAX, an intranasal vaccine being explored in the treatment of seasonal and pandemic influenza. NasoVAX has successfully completed a phase IIa study, demonstrating 100% seroprotection with serum antibody responses, which was comparable to published results of a licensed injected influenza vaccine.

The Company is exploring potential partnerships for further development of NasoVAX, a phase IIb-ready drug candidate.

Up next in the pipeline is HepTcell, a peptide-based immunotherapeutic for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B. A phase II multinational trial of HepTcell is expected to be initiated in the fourth quarter of this year, depending upon the ongoing assessment of the impact of COVID-19 on study conduct.

As recently as late last month, the Company dosed the first patient in its phase Ib clinical trial of NasoShield, a single dose intranasal anthrax vaccine candidate.

The NasoShield program is being developed under a contract with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), with a total potential value of $133.7 million if all options in the contract are exercised. Of this, $3.7 million BARDA funding has been received by the Company to initiate the phase Ib clinical trial. Data from this trial is expected in the second half of this year.

A drug candidate for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), the most severe form of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, ALT-801, is also being developed by the Company.

Manufacturing of the clinical trial material for ALT-801 has begun and the compound is expected to advance into phase I study next quarter.

Shares of Altimmune have come a long way from an opening price of $1.89 on Jan 2, 2020, to an intraday high of $20.65 on July 8, 2020. The stock was trading around $3 when we alerted readers to it on Feb.28, 2020.

With a couple of updates on the Company's clinical programs, most notably, its COVID-19 drug and vaccine trials, expected in the coming months, it is worth keeping an eye on ALT.

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