Ocugen (OCGN 3.00%) was a standout stock in the healthcare realm on Thursday, with its share price shooting more than 10% higher, against the slight decline of the S&P 500 index. The gene therapies specialist benefited from some encouraging news from a business partner.
These days, big movements in Ocugen's stock are tied to Covaxin, the coronavirus vaccine for which it holds the exclusive commercial rights in the U.S.
Covaxin is being developed by India's Bharat Biotech, and on Thursday, Ocugen announced that its partner posted very encouraging results in a Phase 2/3 clinical trial of children. Covaxin recipients aged 2 to 18 receiving the vaccine demonstrated "a robust neutralizing antibody response and favorable safety profile." All told, the data indicate a more than 93% reduction in severe disease. No severe adverse events were reported.
When matched to the vaccine's performance with adult recipients, Ocugen added, "These data demonstrate children 2-18 generate antibody response comparable to adults fully vaccinated with Covaxin."
All told, the seven-month study involved 525 children in that age group. The children received two doses of Covaxin, administered 28 days apart.
Ocugen said that the data from the study were submitted to the Drugs Controller General of India to support a pediatric indication for Covaxin. The biotech company added that the data would also be submitted to a peer-reviewed scientific publication, although it did not specify which one.
At the moment, Covaxin has been authorized for emergency use in 17 countries, although, crucially, the U.S. is not one of them. Applications have been submitted in more than 60 other jurisdictions.