Markets

Health Care Sector Update for 12/14/2015: AKBA,NRX,ATRA

Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ -0.26%

PZE -0.45%

MRK +0.38%

ABT -0.46%

AMGN +1.11%

Health care stocks have slipped under their break-even levels, with the NYSE Health Care Index declining around 0.3% while shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 were down about 0.1% as a group.

In company news, shares of Akebia Therapeutics ( AKBA ) surged Monday after the drugmaker announced a collaboration agreement with Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma to develop and commercialize Akebia prospective treatment for anemia associated with chronic kidney disease.

Under the terms of the agreement, Mitsubishi Tanabe paid $40 million at signing and will pay up to $60 million more of the costs for a global Phase III trial of Akebia's vadadustat drug candidate. Akebia also is eligible to receive up to $250 million in additional payments tied to certain development and sales milestones.

Also, if vadadustat is cleared for commercial sale, Mitsubishi Tanabe will make tiered royalty payments, ranging from the low teens up to 20%, based on sales of the drug in Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Indonesia, India and other Asian countries.

AKBA shares were up nearly 9% at $10.59 apiece, earlier advancing to a session high of $12.00 a share.

In other sector news,

(+) NRX, (+52.4%) Receives FDA clearance of its Investigational New Drug application for a clinical trial of its intravenous pyridorin product candidate for treating acute kidney injury.

(-) ATRA, (-25.8%) PINTA 745 drug candidate fails to meet primary target during Phase II proof-of-concept trial to treat protein-energy wasting in patients with end-stage kidney disease.

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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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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