Concert Pharmaceuticals Plunges on Patent Petition Setback

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Shares of Concert Pharmaceuticals, Inc.CNCE plunged more than 25%, following the announcement that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has refused to grant the company a Post Grant Review petition in a dispute related to Incyte Corporation's (INCY) '335 patent.

However, shares of the company have gained 92.4% in the past year, significantly outperforming the industry 's gain of 10.4% in that period.

The patent '335 protects Incyte's JAK inhibitor, ruxolitinib, which is sold under the tradename Jakafi for treating myelofibrosis and polycythemia vera. Concert Pharma's pipeline candidate, CTP-543, is a modified version of ruxolitinib, which is being developed as a treatment for alopecia areata.

Alopecia areata is an auto-immune disease, which result in partial or complete hair losson the scalp and/or body.

However, the company said that it may challenge the validity of the patent in the future in federal court. It will also continue developing CTP-543.

In a separate press release, Concert Pharma announced that the FDA has granted Fast Track designation to CTP-543 as a treatment for moderate-to-severe alopecia areata.

The FDA grants a fast track designation to expedite a candidate's development and its faster review, which treat serious and unmet medical conditions. With this designation, a candidate is expected to be granted a priority review once it files a new drug application.

The candidate is currently being evaluated in a phase IIa study.

Apart from CTP-543, Concert Pharma is also developing AVP-786 for treating agitation associated with Alzheimer's disease, JZP-386 in collaboration with Jazz Pharmaceuticals PLC JAZZ in narcolepsy and CTP-730 in collaboration with Celgene Corporation CELG in inflammatory disease.

However, in an asset purchase agreement, the company sold its cystic fibrosis candidate, CTP-656, to Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated VRTX in July last year.

Zacks Rank

Concert Pharma carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here .

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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.

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

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