Alnylam Falls on Pfizer's Rare Disease Drug Success

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Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 's ALNY shares fell 8.3% after pharma giant Pfizer Inc. PFE announced positive top-line results from a late-stage study on a competing rare disease candidate.

Pfizer announced that a phase III ATTR-ACT study evaluating pipeline candidate tafamidis for a transthyretin cardiomyopathy, which is tied to progressive heart failure, met the primary endpoint. The condition belongs to a family of diseases called transthyretin amyloidosis, or ATTR.

Top-line data from the ATTR-ACT study showed that treatment with tafamidis led to a statistically significant reduction in the combination of all-cause mortality and frequency of cardiovascular-related hospitalizations - the primary endpoint - compared with the placebo at 30 months. The safety data also demonstrated that that tafamidis was generally well tolerated by patients.

Currently, there are no approved medications in the United States for the treatment of transthyretin cardiomyopathy.

Shares of Alnylam plunged on this news as it increases competitive pressure on Alnylam's lead candidate patisiran which has been developed for hereditary TTR amyloidosis, or hATTR. Patisiran is under review in the EU and United States (PDUFA date of Aug 11, 2018) and might be launched this year.

There are two types of TTR-CM, a hereditary form and a wild-type form of the disease, which is not hereditary. The ATTR-ACT study included both types of patients. However, Alnylam has developed patisiran for the hereditary form of the disease.

Note that shares of Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. IONS also fell on the announcement of the positive data by Pfizer, as the Ionis' candidate inotersenis also under review for hereditary ATTR amyloidosis with polyneuropathy.

Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price

Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price | Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Quote

Zacks Rank & Stock to Consider

Alnylam carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Shares of the company rallied 136.1% in the past one year against the industry 's decline of 5.1%.

Investors interested in the space can consider a better-ranked stock Regeneron Pharmaceuticals REGN , sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see  the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .

Regeneron's earnings per share estimates have moved up from $18.65 to $18.68 for 2018 in the last 30 days. The company pulled off a positive earnings surprise in three of the last four quarters, with an average beat of 9.15%.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: PFE , REGN , ALNY , IONS

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