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Why Gilead Can't Exit The Current Trading Range

May 04, 2020 11:28 AM ETGilead Sciences, Inc. (GILD)84 Comments
Biotech Beast profile picture
Biotech Beast


  • Something has stopped GILD breaking out from the current range.
  • There are still some questions on remdesivir and the company hasn't quite provided the details the market wants.
  • Some of those details may come in late May.

The end of last week saw the release of results from multiple studies of Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) remdesivir, but the stock finds itself more or less in the same spot as it was before the data. This article takes a look at why that might be and what could trigger a change in the share price.

ChartData by YCharts

Figure 1: Past month of GILD trading.

Remdesivir data no slam dunk

The first reason GILD might not have experienced a sustained rally relates to the data seen with remdesivir itself in COVID-19.

GILD's SIMPLE study comparing five days of remdesivir to 10 days in severe COVID-19 produced an uninterpretable result. Five days of therapy was numerically more likely than 10 days to produce ≥ 2 points of clinical improvement, produced greater rates of clinical recovery and discharge, and also lower rates of mortality. Thankfully, those differences were only trends, there was no statistical significance.

Table 1: Key efficacy and safety data from GILD's SIMPLE Phase 3 study. Source: April 29 press release.

With results from the SIMPLE study, we are left asking if five and 10 days of remdesivir are equally effective, or equally ineffective. How are we supposed to build upon that result? The fact that the benefit trended towards five days of therapy vs. 10 days of therapy doesn't help matters.

Fortunately, we also have data from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) study which were much more convincing. Preliminary results from The Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial found that the time to recovery was 31% in COVID-19 patients treated with remdesivir compared to those treated with placebo (p<0.001). There was no mortality benefit (8% remdesivir vs 11.6% placebo, p=0.059) but a near miss.

One of the issues with this trial is the fact that the

This article was written by

Biotech Beast profile picture
Scientist and trader of biotech stock. Focus on trading around events such as trial results and NDA/BLA approvals. Also covering companies in industries regulated by the FDA. Articles present my opinion on stocks, but don't constitute investment advice.

Analyst’s Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

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