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Fly News Breaks for June 14, 2019
BLUE, NVS
Jun 14, 2019 | 12:40 EDT
The $1.8M price tag of Bluebird Bio's Zynteglo is "hard to justify" given the $2.1M comp of Novartis' (NVS) Zolgensma, which treats children with a certain outcome of death, as opposed to a population where the majority of patients are adequately maintained on transfusions, Piper Jaffray analyst Tyler Van Buren tells investors in a research note. In Zynteglo clinical trials, only 60 beta-thal patients have been enrolled and 16 sickle cell patients have ever been infused, the analyst points out. Yet, says Van Buren, the Street is modeling that Bluebird transplants thousands of patients with Zynteglo. He continues to believe uptake of the gene therapy will be challenging and keeps a Neutral rating on Bluebird Bio with a $120 price target.