ACOR

Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. (ACOR)

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Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. (ACOR)

31st Annual JPMorgan Healthcare Conference

January 07, 2013 2:00 pm ET

Executives

Ron Cohen - Founder, Chief Executive Officer, President and Director

Analysts

Geoffrey C. Meacham - JP Morgan Chase & Co, Research Division

Presentation

Geoffrey C. Meacham - JP Morgan Chase & Co, Research Division

Good morning. Welcome to the Day 1 of the 31st Annual JPMorgan Healthcare Conference. My name is Geoff Meacham. I'm a biotech analyst here at JPMorgan. It's a pleasure to introduce Acorda Therapeutics, one of the leaders in the neurology space. And speaking on behalf of Acorda is its CEO, Ron Cohen. Ron?

Ron Cohen

Thank you very much, Geoff. Thanks for having us, and welcome, everyone. We're looking forward to giving you an update on Acorda this morning.

Before I begin, just a reminder that the presentation will contain forward-looking statements, and we encourage you to consult our detailed filings at the SEC.

I also want to remind you all that after -- immediately after this session, there will be a breakout session in the Yorkshire Room, which I'm told is in immediate left out the door and the first door on the right.

So today, I will be taking you through a quick summary of our achievements in 2012, as well as giving you a commercial update on AMPYRA, an overview of our newly acquired asset, Diazepam Nasal Spray, a look at the progress of our pipeline programs, our business development focus, and then finally, a financial summary and our guidance for '13.

Acorda's corporate objective is to be the leading biopharmaceutical company, delivering therapies that restore neurological function to people with these terrible conditions affecting the nervous system that remove function, and thereby, improve the lives of those people.

Looking first to 2012. Our AMPYRA unaudited revenue, net revenue for the year was $266 million. We also, as I mentioned, acquired Diazepam Nasal Spray, which I'll talk more about in the next few slides. We initiated 2 Phase II proof-of-concept studies of AMPYRA, our lead commercial asset, looking at post-stroke deficits and also improving functions in cerebral palsy.

We completed all of our FDA commitments, our post-approval commitments for AMPYRA, as well as completing a Phase I trial, safety trial, for GGF2, one of our pipeline products looking at heart failure. And we filed and now have an open IND for rHIgM22, which is our remyelinating antibody, and I'll cover all of these in more detail in the ensuing slides.

Looking first at AMPYRA, just a snapshot. Since our launch in March of '10, and you see a very nice progression, very nice year-over-year growth, which included about a 26% year-over-year growth, '12 to '11.

The success of AMPYRA in '12 was driven in part by our new commercial and educational initiatives. In particular, we broadened access to what we call our First Step Program. Now again, for those of you who may not have been following us as closely, AMPYRA is indicated to improve walking in people with multiple sclerosis. A walking disability is one of the most common and one of the most feared aspects of multiple sclerosis as it inexorably removes independence and ability to function in these people. AMPYRA is the only drug that has been approved to improve walking function in MS. And we initiated this -- or rather broadened last year our access to a program we called First Step, in which the patients are given a 2-month free trial of AMPYRA. And this was in response to the fact that there is a subset of responders to the drug as there is with any drug, but we've been able to characterize that subset at about 40% of the people who tried the drug. And this is a way for people to try the drug and for clinicians to prescribe it without getting into issues of reimbursement, any other issues they might have, until they know whether the patient is a responder or not. And once they do know that the patient is a responder, they're highly motivated to keep the patient on drug, and the patients are highly motivated to stay on drug.

So that has been extremely successful for us. And we married it with another program that we call Step Together. And there's a prize at the end for anyone who can see the common thread in our marketing logo here or our marketing themes. It is the word "step". And Step Together allows the patient and the doctor to sign up at the time that the drug is prescribed, and we then give the patient the ability to fill out a specific questionnaire on how the drug may be affecting their walking ability, and then the physician is given access to those data. And this is in response to our recognition that for most of these patients, they'll come see the doctor once every 6 months or so. So they get the prescription, and then the doctor never hears again or doesn't hear again for a very long time. And this is a way of giving the doctor, in real time, feedback from the patient and also giving the patient the opportunity to communicate with the doctor about how they're doing on the drug. And this has been very well received by both the patients and the prescribers.

We've also enhanced our consumer outreach both digitally and at various functions, speaker programs, MS Walks and the like. And to-date, since launch, over 73,000 people with MS have tried AMPYRA.

Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com