Optimer Pharmaceuticals Inc.
) recently announced its preliminary sales for the fourth quarter
and full year 2012.
Optimer said that preliminary gross product sales of its only
marketed product, Dificid (fidaxomicin), were $74.4 million in
the US and Canada for the full year 2012 compared to $24.4
million in 2011. Dificid gross sales for the fourth quarter of
2012 were $21.3 million representing a sequential increase of
more than 14.4%. Optimer mentioned that preliminary gross-to-net
range for the last quarter of 2012 is expected to be
Optimer recently (effective from January 3, 2013) increased
Dificid's wholesale acquisition cost by around 5.6%. Moreover,
the company announced the launch of a Co-Pay Assistance Program
for patients who are commercially insured.
Dificid was launched in the US in July 2011 for treating
patients suffering from clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea
(CDAD) -- the most common form of nosocomial, or hospital
acquired, diarrhea. We note that Optimer has an exclusive
two-year agreement (through July 2013) with
) to co-promote Dificid in the US for the treatment of CDAD.
Dificid was approved in the EU under the trade name, Dificlir,
in December 2011 and was launched in Canada in June 2012.
We remind investors that in December 2012, Optimer
) to commercialize Dificid in South America including Brazil,
Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean.
Optimer's preliminary Dificid result looks encouraging.
However, we remain concerned about Optimer's dependence on a
single product for growth.
Currently, we have a Neutral stance on Optimer in the long
run. The company carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). However, other
pharma stocks such as
) carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Buy).
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