Shares of BioCryst Pharmaceuticals (BCRX 0.78%) are rising sharply today following bullish commentary from a Wall Street analyst. The biopharmaceutical company's stock was up by 9.2% as of 1:11 p.m. EST, after jumping by as much as 10.6% earlier on Monday.
Cowen analyst Ken Cacciatore initiated coverage on BioCryst stock with an outperform (buy) rating. Cacciatore also gave the stock a price target of $16. Shares of BioCryst Pharmaceuticals closed Friday's trading at $10.78, and they are at $11.89 as of this writing. In other words, the analyst's price target represents a significant upside on the stock, even accounting for today's rally. Why is Cacciatore so enthusiastic regarding BioCryst Pharmaceuticals' prospects? In a word: Orladeyo.
Orladeyo is a once-daily pill to prevent hereditary angioedema attacks. It was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in December. BioCryst expects this medicine to generate peak sales of more than a half-billion dollars, and Cacciatore agrees with this assessment. The analyst believes that Orladeyo has great potential thanks to patients' preference for oral treatments. Cacciatore also thinks some of BioCryst's other programs add upside to the company's stock.
Should investors be as excited about BioCryst Pharmaceuticals as Cacciatore? On the one hand, there is no questioning Orladeyo's potential, but the company's future beyond this drug is a lot less certain. For that reason, I think it is worth it for long-term investors to keep an eye on this healthcare stock, but I wouldn't pull the trigger just yet.