Neurocrine made a big bet on Takeda’s psychiatric drugs last summer, licensing seven programs worth over $ 2 billion

Luvadaxistat was the most advanced of the group after entering Phase 2 testing in 2017.The drug is said to block an enzyme that breaks down a certain type of amino acid that is important for brain function

While the science behind luvadaxistat has caused a stir, Wall Street analysts lost much of their optimism about the program last month after Massachusetts-based Concert Pharmaceuticals reported disappointing results for an experimental drug that is said to work similarly >

Despite lower expectations, negative results for luvadaxistat still caused Neurocrine’s stock price to fall more than 7%, with shares trading at $ 101 apiece on Tuesday morning, a little more than 20% less than last June when Neurocrine signed his contract with Takeda

Neurocrine hasn’t given up, however, and biotechnology now appears to be reshaping its development plans based on the drug’s potential cognitive effects

Paul Matteis, an analyst at Stifel, wrote to clients that his team was able to connect with Neurocrine and gain more context about the luvadaxistat program and its future path, according to Matteis, Takeda initially considered whether the drug should be developed for schizophrenia negative symptoms or cognition, which implies that the signal observed in the interim study is consistent with the company’s original scientific hypotheses

In addition, there remains a great need for treatments to combat cognitive impairment in schizophrenic patients. Should Luvadaxistat be approved in this indication, it could be a valuable source of revenue diversification for Neurocrine, which is marketed almost entirely at Ingrezza, its marketed Therapy for tardive dyskinesias is instructed

“However, there is also a lot of opacity here and no data to analyze,” wrote Matteis, reiterating that other analysts who have written the prospect for luvadaxistat will not be fully understood until the data is published or presented

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Source: https://www.biopharmadive.com/news/neurocrine-schizophrenia-study-failure-takeda/595956/