It says a lot about ZymoGenetics'
I can see why management might be excited about the hepatitis drug. The phase 1b trial testing of its "IL-29" in hepatitis C patients just came out on Monday. And the stock shot up 17% as a result. But the decision to lead with that probably had more to do with the drug likely joining a market with Schering-Plough's
$1.8 million? Ouch! That's no way to support a drug pipeline.
Unfortunately, this thrombin is competing against entrenched leader King Pharmaceuticals
In order to get hospitals to use its Recothrom, ZymoGenetics is dropping its price. The plan seems to be to switch the hospitals to Recothrom with prices competitive with King and Omrix, while emphasizing the safety. Management said that early results seem positive, and they are projecting $3 million in fourth-quarter sales. They'll begin to raise prices once the hospitals are using the product. Good luck with that.
While I think we can write off Recothrom as being the saving grace of the company -- at least for now -- ZymoGenetics shouldn't be left for dead. This quarter it'll get a milestone payment from Bayer, its international partner for Recothrom, and some cash from Bristol-Myers Squibb