Is BioCrypst Pharmaceuticals (BCRX) Stock a Buy on ORLADEYO News?

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: BCRX) is having a strong start to the trading session this morning, up nearly 10% an hour after the open. The gains are ultimately the result of news surrounding the company’s ORLADEYO product, a treatment for hereditary angioedema that was approved in early-December 2020. 

Here’s what’s happening:

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BCRX Provides ORLADEYO Sales Update

First and foremost, BioCryst Pharmaceuticals provided a preliminary, unaudited ORLADEYO sales update for the fourth quarter and full 2021 year. The company also provided new guidance for 2022 net revenues and expected peak ORLADEYO sales. 

In the update, the company said it drove net revenues from ORLADEYO of $45.6 million in the fourth quarter and the full-year total came to $122 million. 

Sales Stats

BCRX went on to provide further data from the launch and expectations for the future. First and foremost, the company said that new patient demand for the treatment remains strong and consistent with the same number of new patients added in the fourth quarter as was the case in each of the three previous quarters of the year. 

Interestingly, the company is having no problems getting consumers to switch from other therapeutics. In fact, it explained that more than half of new patients to ORLADEYO since the launch had previous prophylactic medicine prior to taking advantage of the new treatment. The vast majority of those that weren’t already on a prophylactic used acute-only treatments. 

Perhaps more importantly, there seems to be quite a bit of sticktoitiveness for the drug. In fact, most patients who’ve used it remain well controlled and on therapy. In fact, about 70% of patients that start therapy remain on it for at least the first year. 

To add icing to the cake, insurance coverage is going great. In fact, all major payors and national and regional benefit managers now cover the therapeutic, according to BCRX. This will likely lead to further growth in demand for the treatment. 

Add that fact to the consistently growing prescriber base for the drug, and significant growth in sales can be expected. In terms of significant sales growth, here’s what the company is expecting:

BCRX Updates ORLADEYO Guidance

The company isn’t expecting growth in sales to slow anytime soon. In fact, it said that it expects to achieve no less than $250 million in net revenue from the drug in 2022. If that proves to be the case Biocryst will have more than doubled its 2021 sales. 

The company also updated investors with what they can expect from peak sales. Once the market is saturated, BCRX is expecting to generate $1 billion annually from the therapeutic. 

Management Commentary

In a statement, Jon Stonehouse, President and CEO at BCRX, had the following to offer:

“Following 12 months of a successful launch through a global pandemic, we have a clear picture of the continued commercial trajectory for ORLADEYO based on a very attractive product profile, leading to strong patient demand to switch from injectable therapies to our oral, once-daily medicine, with 70 percent patient retention through the first year. Building on our substantial 2021 patient base, we are confident that ORLADEYO will achieve no less than $250 million of net revenue in 2022 and that ORLADEYO will become the market leader as the most prescribed prophylactic therapy with peak sales of $1 billion.” 

The above statement was followed up by Charlie Gayer, CCO at BCRX. Here’s what he had to say:

“We expect ORLADEYO revenues in 2022 to more than double in our second year of launch as we benefit from a full year of reimbursement and continued strong demand from patients and physicians. ORLADEYO is transforming the lives of HAE patients, which is why ORLADEYO is on a trajectory to become the market leader in HAE prophylaxis.”

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Is on the Verge of New Approvals

Later in the announcement, the company provided a pipeline update, pointing to the fact that Pivotal Trials surrounding BCX9930 are now enrolling. These trials, known as REDEEM-1 and REDEEM-2 have the potential to set the stage for regulatory filings in paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH). 

In s statement surrounding the pipeline update, Dr. Helen Thackray, Chief R&D Officer at BCRX, had the following to offer:

“Following the discovery, development and commercialization of ORLADEYO, the BioCryst team plans to repeat this success as we leverage our platform to bring new oral medicines to patients suffering from other rare diseases. BCX9930 is especially exciting because the clinical data we have reported so far provides confidence that we can help patients in PNH, and across many complement-mediated diseases, with this pipeline in a molecule.”

The Bottom Line

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The bottom line here is simple. BioCryst Pharmaceuticals is firing on all cylinders and investors are starting to notice. Not only does the company expect to more than double ORLADEYO sales on a year-over-year basis, it’s setting the stage for yet another New Drug Approval in the relatively near future. No wonder excited investors are sending BCRX stock for the top this morning. 

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