BTIG ups Aerovate to buy on competitor data

BTIG upgraded Aerovate Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AVTE) to “buy” from “neutral” with a $27 price target, citing Gossamer Bio’s TORREY results that could validate Aerovate’s dry powder inhalation (DPI) administered tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) in pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) as a safe and technically viable approach.

Shares of Aerovate were quoted at $18.22, up 22 cents, at mid-day on Dec. 6 as Gossamer announced that its seralutinib met its primary endpoint in the Phase 2 study in PAH.

But analyst Julian Harrison writes that Gossamer’s DPI seralutinib “does not look like a competitive disease modifying therapeutic in PAH” … and “therefore likely does not put pressure on the [Aerovate’s] AV-101 opportunity at this time.”

Aerovate is guiding enrollment completion in its Phase 2b trial of AV-101 in PAH in mid-2023, and data in the fourth quarter of 2023 or first quarter of 2024.

“There is seamless transition from Phase 2b to Phase 3 in Aerovat’s IMPAHCT trial, by design, so we are not expecting Gossamer to have a material timeline advantage going forward,” Mr. Harrison said. Gossamer is not initiating its Phase 3 program until the second half of 2023.