Cantor Fitzgerald raised its price target for RAPT Therapeutics (NASDAQ:RAPT) to $71 from $51, citing an increased probability of success for RPT193 in atopic dermatitis to 50% from 25% previously, and taking up peak sales of the drug, while also increasing expenses due to broad development plans. The stock was quoted at $34.54 near midday on June 14.
“We think RAPT’s RPT193 data update was robust with clear clinical benefit, compared with placebo on all exploratory endpoints, particularly eczema area and severity index (EASI)score and pruritus,” or intense itching, writes analyst Alethia Young.
Ms. Young said the company surpassed its internal goal of 15% placebo-adjusted change in EASI score, with a 19.3% adjusted change, and its goal of a doubling of pruritus improvement, with a 22.8% adjusted improvement.
“We think the data were clearly supportive of advancing to a Phase 2b, which is now expected to initiate in the first half of 2022, given the company plans to take time to analyze the data for biomarker analysis and different sampling,” she added.
Ms. Young said she views the risk/benefit profile as very attractive for an oral, especially compared with oral JAK inhibitors, and “think RAPT may potentially have a best-in-class oral profile. We see a large unmet need for a safe and effective oral treatment, which is separate from the injectable market.”