CEMI: Study May Offer Support for DPP HCV Test
Brian Marckx, CFA
Results of a study in which IV drug users in San Diego were tested
with three rapid hepatitis-C antibody assays potentially provides
further support of Chembio's (
) decision to move forward on continued development of its DPP HCV
The study article, titled "Field-based performance of three
pre-market rapid hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibody assays in STAHR
(Study to Assess Hepatitis C Risk) among young adults who inject
drugs in San Diego, CA", was published in the online version of the
Journal of Clinical Virology and will also be published in the July
Three rapid tests were used in the study, which included Chembio's
DPP HCV oral fluid (cheek swab) and blood tests (finger-stick) and
MedMira's blood test. Sensitivity and specificity measures
were compared to widely used laboratory tests. The highest
sensitivity achieved for CEMI's oral fluid and blood tests were
85.4% and 97.1%, respectively. The highest sensitivity for
MedMira's blood test was just 80.0%. Specificity of CEMI's
oral fluid and blood tests and MedMira's test were 100%, 99%, and
Sensitivity and specificity of CEMI's blood test, the authors
noted, were "acceptable" and "comparable to conventional assays
currently in use." The conventional assays used as
comparators were two laboratory assays including that used by the
Chembio has previously noted that they were in discussions with
potential partners for commercialization of a DPP hepatitis C
test. Chembio had already done significant work on an HCV
test so, depending on the circumstances, we think further
development could potentially move along quickly. Management
has also noted that discussions with
potential collaborators for an HCV diagnostic, including diagnostic
and pharma companies remain in the early stages but ongoing.
However, as we've noted in the past, we do not currently model any
contribution from a DPP HCV antibody test based on the uncertainty
of development and ultimate potential commercial demand.
Depending on the progress and success of CEMI's HCV development
program, we will update our model accordingly which could
potentially provide some upside to our current model.
We cover Chembio with an Outperform rating and a $10.40 (adjusted
for the recent 1 for 8 reverse split) price target.
for a complimentary copy of the full CEMI research report.
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