The advent of Covid-19 also bought the rise of coronavirus stocks. The phenomenon caused shares of previously unknown companies to reach unbelievable heights in 2020, based on the potential to bring solutions to market to mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
For a while barely rose higher than Vaxart (VXRT). The small vaccine maker has one big USP: the potential Covid-19 vaccine is in pill form, a godsend for needles.
But Vaxart has fallen far behind in developing its vaccine after reporting disappointing early-stage results, and has been knocked out by not only its competitors, but recent news that Merck has developed a low-cost oral antiviral drug to fight Covid- 19, seems to go further. dampened his outlook.
That said, B. Riley analyst Mayank Mamtani disagrees with the market’s dismal response to Merck’s announcement.
“We believe that the weakness of the macro-C-19 vaccine sector caused by the oral antiviral agent of MRK is unwarranted, as expensive therapeutic modalities represent a second line of defense, and are particularly complementary to the VXRT platform. said the analyst.
Despite the disappointing early results – the candidate did not produce neutralizing antibodies, although it boosted immunity in other ways – Vaxart has continued to develop the vaccine and has recently begun recruiting for a global Phase 2 clinical trial.
The company also had encouraging news last week, when a Gates Foundation-funded study led by Duke University showed that the vaccine reduced airborne transmission of the virus in an animal model.
As such, Mamtani has a “cautiously optimistic view” of the stock, but much depends on the progress of the vaccine program.
“While we see an improving NT catalyst profile, i.e. the release of NHP immunogenicity data in the fourth quarter, we continue to look for granularity over the execution timelines for the Ph. II program, which is expected to expand significantly outside of the US in the coming months. the analyst summed up.
As such, Mamtani rates VXRT stock as Neutral (ie Hold). But the analyst might as well have said “buy” because he believes the stock, currently at $6.89, could grow to $9 within a year and yield some 31% gains for new investors. . (To view Mamtani’s track record, click here)
In the past 3 months, only one other analyst has thrown in the hat with a Vaxart review, though it’s decidedly positive and makes for an average buying consensus rating. Combined with Mamtani’s target, the average price target clocked in at $13.50, suggesting stocks could nearly double in the coming months. (See VXRT stock analysis on TipRanks)
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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the featured analyst only. The content is for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.