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karmaswimswami
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MD, PhD, FACP
  • Durata (DRTX) Is A Strong Buy Here 4 comments
    Feb 28, 2014 10:53 AM | about stocks: DRTX, MRK

    Durata has completed phase II and phase III studies on an exceptional antibiotic, dalbavancin. This agent will be considered by an FDA AdCom at the end of March 2014 and appears on track to be recommended for approval. Dalbavancin is likely to be deemed exceptional in ways not yet priced into DRTX.

    This antibiotic has exceptional pharmacokinetics. It is given iv but requires only once-weekly administration. Dalbavancin has excellent activity against gram positives that cause cellulitis, certain pneumonias and osteomyelitis.

    The advent of dalbavancin could lead to a minor sea change in medical practice and will likely be embraced by payers for one reason: it prevents hospitalization. Clinicians like me often panic with certain bacterial infections clinically (e.g., cellulitis in a diabetic patient) and plonk those patients in hospital to give round the clock in antibiotics. Now we can infuse a drug in the office, send the patient out and see them again in 5 days. The advent of dalbavancin will also obviate many situations in which home-health nurses muse infuse daily antibiotics, which is less costly than inpatient care but still costly.

    Detractors will whine and say that antibiotics are not blockbusters. Yet it is on the basis of one antibiotic, daptomycin, that Cubist has become a multi-billion dollar company. Dalbavancin will be more convenient than daptomycin and just as effective.

    DRTX does not yet have a product to market. An approval will be a transformative event for the company, which is now at market cap of about $300 million. To speculate, it may be an attractive takeover target.

    One stealth source of appeal for dalbavancin is its activity against a serious bio-terror threat:

    www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2826002/

    Disclosure: I am long DRTX, CBST.

    Stocks: DRTX, MRK
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  • GrowthGeek
    , contributor
    Comments (2958) | Send Message
     
    You present a solid an logical argument. Although one never knows for sure re. FDA approval, I would estimate a 90% chance given Dalba's efficacy and the paucity of new antibiotics in recent years. This stock is still "flying under the radar" probably because many ignore antibiotics. Since the stock price has not risen much even with the promise of Dalba, it presents a very attractive investment opportunity.
    3 Mar 2014, 06:27 PM Reply Like
  • Greenfire87
    , contributor
    Comments (657) | Send Message
     
    Quite compelling Doc.
    Could you think of a reason dalbavancin would NOT be approved?
    This works against MRSA also, which cases of here in the US are growing exponentially every year. Sometimes several IV antibiotics are given at once to beat MRSA.
    Would dalbavancin be a "one only" cure or mono treatment?
    11 Mar 2014, 10:21 PM Reply Like
  • Greenfire87
    , contributor
    Comments (657) | Send Message
     
    Correction;

     

    Apologies. MRSA comment was for CTIX.
    12 Mar 2014, 05:15 PM Reply Like
  • phil.mynutz
    , contributor
    Comments (56) | Send Message
     
    Congrats @karmaswimswami !
    31 Mar 2014, 04:20 PM Reply Like
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