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Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT) Sees Pullback from Record Gains

By  +Follow January 14, 2014 12:05PM
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Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT) continued its wild, roller-coaster ride on Tuesday, with a second-straight day of major losses. Intercept made news last week after its treatment for fatty liver disease, obeticholic acid (OCA), had a Phase II clinical trial halted early because of its efficacy. Shares spiked, then jumped again on the second day after the stock received a raft of massive upgrades from major analysts.

However, this week appears to have seen Intercept return to earth. Shares dropped nearly 20 percent on Monday, and Tuesday saw losses in excess of 30 percent, making the two-day loss nearly 45 percent of its share value. That still has Intercept sporting a five-day gain approaching 450 percent, so investors are hardly sweating recent losses, but it does have the stock returning from the rarified air it reached by the close of markets on Friday.

ICPT Sheds Value on CEO Comments

The plummet for Intercept could be attributed to comments from CEO Mark Pruzanski that his company will most likely need to partner with a larger company to bring OCA to market; a deal that would most likely eat into any potential profits.

“[Intercept’s plan] is very much to build a commercial capability,” the he said in a phone interview with Bloomberg. “But large pharmaceutical companies are very good at this kind of thing. And the overarching responsibility here is to do what we can in a responsible way to get” OCA to patients if it’s approved.

“If that can be done in a more expedited fashion with a partner, that’s something we should consider,” he continued.

However, while these comments from Monday are clearly a factor, profit-taking by traders satisfied with last week’s massive gains and anticipating a market pull-back is probably a contributing factor as well as share-volume continued at very high levels.

Concerns Over Cholesterol Levels in OCA Patients Also a Factor

The revelation that the study showed rising cholesterol levels for the patients taking OCA as compared to those on a placebo could also be weighing on Intercept’s stock. The details of the study were included in a Sunday press release from Intercept.

"OCA is an FXR agonist and we have known for a long time that it is involved in many aspects of lipid metabolism," said Pruzanski in the release. "An important part of the rationale for advancing our drug in NASH is that by activating FXR in the liver, we believe that it reduces the excess lipid load which is a causal factor in the disease. In addition, there is preclinical evidence that by activating FXR systemically, OCA is able to shunt excess lipids away from collecting in arteries and other organs which could also be beneficial. It is in any case clear that the lipid changes seen in OCA-treated patients are part of a complex set of mechanisms and we are already conducting further studies to gain a more complete understanding of the clinical implications."

The timing of the release and the major decline in shares would seem to indicate that the cholesterol concerns may also be part of the picture this week.

“[While the cholesterol] link is not new news, we believe many investors are seeing it now for the first time,” wrote Oppenheimer & Co. analyst Akiva Felt in a note to clients.

While the Phase II trial showed promising results, some still noted that OCA is still far from approval even if it appears nearly certain to reach that end point.

“What we have is a proof of concept study,” said Nezam Afdhal, head of hepatology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. “‘How that becomes a registration trial and an approvable drug is a million-dollar question.’’

ICPT Continues to Move Price for Galectin, Others

The explosion of Intercept’s stock, as well as that of other pharma companies developing similar therapies, indicates that the potential for a successful treatment for fatty liver disease, which is estimated to affect 5 percent of the population, took the markets by surprise to some degree.

And, once again, the markets appeared to treat companies with potential treatments for fatty liver disease as a monolith to some degree, with Intercept's declines appearing to trigger similar declines among its competitors in the fatty liver disease sphere.

Shares in Galectin Therapeutics (GALT) plunged over 12 percent Tuesday to make its two-day losses over 20 percent, while Conatus Pharmaceuticals (CNAT) lost almost 2.75 percent Tuesday for two-day losses just under 20 percent.

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of equities.com. Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to: http://www.equities.com/disclaimer


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Results for icpt
Mercy Brickman
29 Jun 15 19:44:54
RT @BlinkX90: $ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S./ Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliar…
Yu Zhu
29 Jun 15 17:31:13
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
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29 Jun 15 17:00:26
$ICPT | Intercept Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is down 23% since we reported $1,456,667 of insider selling on ... - http://t.co/uqAflBEhal
Venator
29 Jun 15 16:36:50
$ICPT Submits Applics in US/Euro for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid 4Treatment of Primary Biliary Cirrhosis. http://t.co/FhS9wqLnzK
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29 Jun 15 15:57:40
$ICPT Seeks Marketing Approval in the U.S., Europe for Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliary Cirrhosis
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29 Jun 15 15:55:17
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
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29 Jun 15 15:20:03
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29 Jun 15 15:18:17
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29 Jun 15 15:14:26
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29 Jun 15 14:46:04
RT @BlinkX90: $ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S./ Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliar…
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29 Jun 15 14:12:40
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
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29 Jun 15 13:25:21
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
Biotech Supernova
29 Jun 15 13:19:02
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
Brandon
29 Jun 15 13:15:47
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
shmittahcapital
29 Jun 15 13:15:37
RT @adamfeuerstein: $ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
Lu
29 Jun 15 13:15:12
RT @BioStocks: $ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S. and Europe for Marketing Approval of OAC http://t.co/vp0cRWibRC
Adam Feuerstein
29 Jun 15 13:15:07
$ICPT submits OCA for PBC to FDA and EMA.
Breaking News Now
29 Jun 15 13:09:03
$ICPT: Intercept Pharmaceuticals Submits Applications in the U.S. and ...: http://t.co/i3fGmdSdFG
Biostockinfo
29 Jun 15 13:09:01
RT @BlinkX90: $ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S./ Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliar…
NKhan
29 Jun 15 13:07:10
RT @BlinkX90: $ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S./ Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliar…
Bio Stocks™
29 Jun 15 13:06:53
$ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S. and Europe for Marketing Approval of OAC http://t.co/vp0cRWibRC
nixon786
29 Jun 15 13:05:54
RT @BlinkX90: $ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S./ Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliar…
GNWLive
29 Jun 15 13:05:45
Intercept Pharmaceuticals Submits Applications in the U.S. and Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic $ICPT http://t.co/7AP4CD5aQs
GNWLive
29 Jun 15 13:05:45
Intercept Pharmaceuticals Submits Applications in the U.S. and Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic $ICPT http://t.co/1rTrwmNA0O
Blink
29 Jun 15 13:05:36
$ICPT Submits Applications in the U.S./ Europe for Marketing Approval of Obeticholic Acid for the Treatment of Primary Biliary Cirrhosis
Venator
29 Jun 15 13:02:19
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shmittahcapital
29 Jun 15 12:49:36
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29 Jun 15 09:09:49
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Peter Bardens
29 Jun 15 08:05:39
$ICPT Shares of Intercept Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ICPT) Sees Large Inflow of ... http://t.co/rLYN2z94Na
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29 Jun 15 07:33:39
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Irma Doucet
29 Jun 15 05:32:47
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29 Jun 15 04:58:39
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29 Jun 15 03:33:07
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29 Jun 15 03:32:52
Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc $ICPT Insider Selling
				
				
By  +Follow January 14, 2014 12:05PM
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