Questcor Pharmaceuticals Inc.
) participated in the 32
annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. Questcor mentioned at
the conference that it is looking to adopt business development
activity owing to its huge cash flow. The company is
contemplating many options that include going private, possible
acquisitions and/or partnerships. Investors reacted positively
with the share price surging 11.2%.
The presentation also talked about the company's fourth
quarter 2013 performance and its overall business.
Questcor's lead product Acthar is approved by the U.S. Food
and Drug Administration (FDA) for as many as 19 indications. Some
of these indications include nephrotic syndrome (NS), systemic
lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis
(MS) relapses and infantile spasms (IS) indications.
Questcor expects Acthar prescriptions to be around 2,500 in
the fourth quarter and nearly 9,000 for 2013. In the fourth
quarter, Questcor expects sales from Acthar's therapeutic
indications to rise on a year-over-year basis. Questcor expects
Acthar's MS indication sales to fall slightly, NS sales to rise
sequentially and rheumatology to rise in the range of 15% to 20%
in the fourth quarter of 2013. Questcor anticipates a cash
balance of $320 million at the end of 2013.
Acthar is currently under evaluation for amyotrophic lateral
sclerosis (ALS) (phase II), acute respiratory distress syndrome
(phase II), diabetic nephropathy (phase II), idiopathic
membranous nephropathy (phase IV) and lupus (phase IV).
Questcor's growth going forward will be driven by increasing
investment in current market penetration, research and
development, development of new indications for Acthar and
developing international markets for Synacthen and Acthar.
Questcor carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks
Lannett Company, Inc.
WuXi PharmaTech (Cayman) Inc.
). All the three stocks carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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