Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
) recently announced that Xenon Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced
that the latter has exercised its option to gain an exclusive
worldwide license to XEN701, an antisense candidate discovered
under its collaboration with Isis Pharma.
With Xenon exercising its option, Isis Pharma is entitled to
receive $2 million from Xenon. Isis Pharma's association with
Xenon goes back to 2010 when the companies signed an agreement
for the discovery and development of antisense drugs for the
treatment of anemia of chronic disorders (ACD). At that time,
Isis Pharma had received an upfront payment in the form of a
convertible promissory note.
With Xenon exercising its option, it will be responsible for
the future development and commercialization of XEN701. Isis
Pharma will be entitled to receive payments on the achievement of
development and commercial milestones as well as royalties on
XEN701 sales. Isis Pharma will also be eligible to receive a part
of sublicense revenues.
Xenon will initially evaluate XEN701 in patients with chronic
kidney disease who cannot tolerate or are unable to respond
completely to erythropoietin therapy.
Isis Pharma currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). We are
positive on Isis Pharma's collaborations with companies like
) among others, which not only validate its antisense technology
but also provide Isis Pharma with funds in the form of upfront,
milestone and other payments.
We are also encouraged by the company's progress with its
pipeline - Isis Pharma has several candidates in phase II or
phase III development. The next 12-18 months should be
catalyst-filled with Isis Pharma expected to report results from
We view Kynamro's Jan 2013 approval in the US as a major
milestone for the company. Kynamro was launched in late Mar 2013
and we expect investor focus to remain on the product's
Other companies that currently look well-positioned include
Anika Therapeutics Inc.
) with both being Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks.
ANIKA THERAPEUT (ANIK): Free Stock Analysis
ASTRAZENECA PLC (AZN): Free Stock Analysis
BIOGEN IDEC INC (BIIB): Free Stock Analysis
ISIS PHARMACEUT (ISIS): Free Stock Analysis
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