Halozyme (HALO) Soars On A Major Milestone Payment from Roche

Shares of Halozyme Therapeutics (HALO) soared last week, after the company announced that the commercial launch of Roche's Herceptin SC (subcutaneous version) in Europe had triggered a $10 million milestone to the company. Roche's Herceptin is its top-selling treatment for patients with HER2-positive breast cancer, and generated $6.3 billion in annual sales in fiscal 2012. HER2-positive breast cancer, which is a particularly aggressive form of the cancer, affects 15% to 20% of diagnosed patients.

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Herceptin had previously been administered intravenously. But now, through a combination with Halozyme's patented recombinant human enzyme technology, it has been made into a subcutaneous form that can simply be injected, cutting the time needed for a dose from 30 to 90 minutes down to two to five minutes. That huge change could end up replacing the IV version of Herceptin completely, and help Roche outrun the patent expirations of Herceptin, which start next year. The commercial launch of Herceptin SC will also help Halozyme overcome investor concerns that its enzyme could cause unwanted antibody production in patients, which could cause adverse effects. Halozyme's prior collaboration with ViroPharma (VPHM) was first halted by the FDA then terminated by ViroPharma for that reason. Halozyme had been originally working on a subcutaneous version of its orphan drug Cinryze, which is used to treat HAE (hereditary angioedema), a rare condition which causes the uncontrollable swelling of the extremities, genitals, respiratory system, and gastric tract. ViroPharma's termination of the partnership in August cast a gloomy shadow over Halozyme as investors questioned the safety of its human enzyme. The success of Herceptin could spell future good news for Halozyme's other collaborators, which include Pfizer (PFE) and Baxter Healthcare (BAX). Although Halozyme is currently unprofitable, its revenue climbed 86.3% year-over-year in its latest quarter on collaboration and royalty revenues. Shares of Halozyme have climbed 33% over the past twelve months, handily beating out the NASDAQ's 19% gain. The stock currently trades with a price to sales ratio of 22, indicating that investors still expect big things from this stock going forward. Other News About HALO Commercial Launch of Herceptin SCinEU Triggers Milestone Payment Halozyme gets a big payday from the new version of Herceptin. Halozyme Stock Climbs 8% As It Reaches a Milestone Halozyme surges on good news from Europe. Other Stocks in the News Achillion Crashes on FDA Clinical Hold Achillion loses 50% of its market value overnight. Eli Lilly Hits Another Brick Wall Lilly's breast cancer drug fails. Copyright 2013 by InvestorGuide.com, Inc. InvestorGuide has no control over the sites we link to, is not affiliated with these sites, and cannot take responsibility for their quality or suitability. The news, analysis, commentary and profile information is not meant to be comprehensive, and the data provided is not guaranteed to be accurate. WebFinance Inc., the publisher of this newsletter, is not a registered investment advisor or a broker/dealer. This is not a stock recommendation newsletter but rather a source for investment ideas, and we encourage you to fully research any company before considering investing. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of nor are they endorsed by WebFinance Inc. No employee of WebFinance has owned or currently owns any shares in the company described above. The above is neither an offer nor solicitation to buy or sell any securities. The trading of securities may not be suitable for all potential readers of this newsletter, and the purchase of stocks mentioned in this newsletter may result in the loss of some or all of any investment made. We recommend that you consult a stockbroker or financial advisor before buying or selling securities or making investment decisions. We are not responsible for claims made by advertisers and sponsors. Anyone who makes decisions based on what they read here does so at their own risk and cannot hold WebFinance Inc. (DBA InvestorGuide.com, Inc.) or its employees responsible.

Published on Oct 3, 2013
By Leo Sun
Leo Sun
Leo Sun is a freelance finance writer and position trader. He focuses on a combination of value and momentum investing, with a strong interest in the trading philosophies of Warren Buffett and Peter Lynch. Leo also has experience writing articles to help small business owners acquire loans and manage their finances. He regularly contributes to the Stock of the Day analysis.

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