If you have ever personally contracted or know anyone who has contracted hospital or long-term care born internal infection, there is a bit of good news this morning. Optimer Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: OPTR) released some positive top-line results from its pivotal Phase III clinical study of Optimer’s lead anti-infective drug candidate, OPT-80, in patients with Clostridium difficile Infection (CDI).
ViroPharma (NASDAQ: VPHM) makes the competing drug called Vancocin, and its shares are down 5.7% at $11.85 in pre-market trading.
ViroPharma Inc. (NASDAQ: VPHM) is bucking the trend of bad earnings, which you might expect considering that the biotech company should be somewhat independent of growth or recession. The company has also just last week closed its merger with Lev Pharmaceuticals, and those numbers are not in the past quarter earnings.
The company reported Q3-2008 earnings of $0.33 EPS on a 29.4% year/year revenue gain to $65.9 million. First Call had estimates at $0.23 EPS and $59.2 million in revenues.
More importantly than the past, the company is also giving upside guidance of $235 to 245 million for the year in Vancocin sales vs. estimates of $233.3 million. Guidance on R&D and general and administrative expenses for 2008 is roughly $115 to $125 million.
Regarding additional payments due to Lilly in connection with the Vancocin acquisition, the company said that net sales as of September 30, 2008 exceeded the threshold of $45.0 million and it recorded additional purchase price of $7.0 million to intangible assets in 2008.
ViroPharma commercializes Vancocin, which is approved for oral treatment of antibiotic-associated pseudomembranous colitis caused by Clostridium difficile and enterocolitis caused by Staphylococcus aureus. This includes methicillin-resistant strains. ViroPharma commercializes Cinryze(TM) for routine prophylaxis against angioedema attacks in adolescent and adult patients with hereditary angioedema, also known as C1 inhibitor deficiency.
The primary drivers were the increase in net sales and a lower effective tax rate.
Shares are up over 7% at $11.95 and the 52-week trading range is $7.11 to $15.16.
Jon C. Ogg
October 29, 2008