Shares of Editas Medicine (EDIT 2.66%) were rocketing more than 13% higher in late-afternoon trading on Wednesday, and it was little wonder. The company scored twin beats in its latest set of quarterly results, with one line item in particular being a standout.
Prior to market open that day, Editas took the wraps off its second-quarter figures. The genome editing company's revenue was $6.3 million. That's rather impressive for a clinical-stage biotech, and well up from the roughly $379,000 Editas posted in the second quarter of 2021. Net loss narrowed, but only slightly, coming in at $53.5 million ($0.78 per share) versus the year-ago shortfall of $55.3 million.
Analysts weren't expecting that level of top-line improvement. On average, those following Editas stock were forecasting the company would earn less than $4.3 million in revenue. They also believed it would post a marginally deeper net loss of $0.81 per share.
Gene editing continues to be a hot area of interest in the biotech sphere these days, and Editas is benefiting commensurately.
What also helps is that the company's experimental programs are progressing. It recently dosed its first patient in a phase 1/2 trial for its EDIT-301 targeting sickle cell disease, and during the quarter the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Orphan Drug Designation to its EDIT-301, which aims to treat a blood disorder called beta-thalassemia.
It's extremely difficult, if not near-impossible, for companies in the very up-and-down biotech sector to issue guidance for future periods. Entirely in character for the industry, Editas did not do so in its latest set of quarterly results. Nevertheless, the company is clearly making a mark in the industry and progressing well with its pipeline. The happy investor reaction to the quarterly results, then, is understandable.