Long/short equity, biotech, healthcare, small-cap

InterMune: Esbriet And Ascend Will Drive Growth

InterMune (ITMN) has an opportunity to build a market-leading franchise for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, or IPF, which represents an attractive market due to its relatively high prevalence, unmet needs, high pricing, and limited competition. The improved sentiment in Europe for Esbriet's launch (also known as pirfenidone) and ASCEND's success probability make InterMune a good stock for long-term growth.

Given the larger homogeneous IPF patient population compared to the CAPACITY studies, I anticipate Esbriet to show a significant statistical improvement (percentage change) in its primary endpoint, for forced vital capacity, or FVC. Esbriet's market is in a growth curve, which bodes very well for its U.S. market potential if the ASCEND data proves to be positive. The ASCEND trial...

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