Agios Stock Go up after an Encouraging Experimental Trial for Anemia

Agios Pharmaceutical reported an increase in their stock performance and upgraded rating after the news came out about the positive result of its anemia drug.

The shares of Agios are higher by 0.06% with $52 after the trading hours on Monday. The analyst in JP Morgan upgraded the company from neutral to overweight. The firm raised the price target from $50 to $62.

Last Saturday, the company presented their report in the European Hematology Association. They reported the results of the ongoing mid-stage study for their candidate drug – AG-348.  The AG-348 will be used to treat patients suffering from a rare genetic type of anemia which is known as Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency or PKD.

Agios announced the positive result of the Phase 2 trial of its lead anemia drug.  The PKD clinical trial program showed 50% responder rate.  The corresponding doses given to the patient showed increase in hemoglobin levels.

An analyst noted that the increase in hemoglobin count was observed in patients who were given AG-348.  The result of the study is statistically significant and the company believes that they found an effective treatment to manage PKD.

Canaccord upgraded Agios from “hold” to “buy”.

TheStreet Ratings give the company stocks at a “sell” level with a score of D.

An Analyst noted a number of weaknesses that were attributed to its poor rating.   They noted that Agios has several weaknesses that are seen in multiple areas. The company has weak growth in terms of earnings per share and Agios has a failing net income. There is also a disappointing return in terms of equity.

Generally, the company has disappointing performance on their stock as seen in their previous records.

TheStreet Ratings gave a “risk-adjusted” rating on the company’s total return prospect for a 1 year investment perspective.

Agios Targets PKD Anemia

Agios Pharmaceutical is working on finding a drug to treat PKD or Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency, a rare form of anemia. PKD is an inherited disease that presents clinically as hemolytic anemia.  This is a form of anemia wherein there is accelerated destruction of red blood cells.

The mutations in PKR enzymes cause a cellular energy deficit in the red blood cells. This can caused lower activity of pyruvate kinase enzyme, reduction in ATP levels and build up of 2-3 DPG an upstream metabolites.

The standard of care for patients with PKD is supportive treatment which includes chelation therapy, splenectomy and blood transfusion.  Chelation therapy is used to address excessive amount of iron and for the treatment of co-morbidities.  As of now, there is no approved therapy to treat Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency.

Boston Children’s Hospital is collaborating with Agios to better understand the natural history of the disease, its symptoms and complications.   They also identify patients in the treatment centers to get clinical data like genetic information and quality of life measures.

Agios has been discovering and working on novel medicines to treat rare genetic metabolic disorders and cancer. The company continuously conducts research and discovers therapeutic drugs.  The company has multiple investigational medicines for preclinical and clinical development.

Bottom line

Agios Pharmaceuticals may not be in a good position right now in terms of their stock performance. But if they are able to prove that their candidate drug is successful in treating rare form of diseases like PKD – they will be able to regain their falling company.

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