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Prothena (PRTA) Down 16.9% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Rebound?

A month has gone by since the last earnings report for Prothena (PRTA). Shares have lost about 16.9% in that time frame, underperforming the S&P 500.

Will the recent negative trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is Prothena due for a breakout? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let's take a quick look at its most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important catalysts.

Prothena Q2 Earnings Miss, Pipeline Progress in Focus

Prothena reported second-quarter 2022 loss of 88 cents per share, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 51 cents per share. In the year-ago quarter, the company reported earnings of 58 cents.

Total revenues came in at $1.31 million in the quarter, missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $20 million. Revenues in the quarter included collaboration revenues from Bristol Myers Squibb. In the year-ago quarter, the company generated revenues of $60 million from collaboration and license revenues from Roche.

Quarter in Detail

R&D expenses were $31.6 million, up from $21.1 million in the year-ago quarter, primarily due to higher manufacturing costs related to the birtamimab program, higher personnel-related expenses and increased clinical trial expenses, mainly related to the PRX012 and birtamimab.

General and administrative (G&A) expenses were $13 million, up from $11 million in the year-ago quarter.

As of Jun 30, 2022, Prothena had $510.1 million in cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash and no debt.

Pipeline Updates

Prothena is advancing an early-stage pipeline of programs for a number of potential neurological indications with Bristol Myers.  PRX005 — a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) — is an investigational antibody that targets tau, a protein implicated in diseases including AD, frontotemporal dementia, progressive supranuclear palsy, chronic traumatic encephalopathy and other tauopathies. A phase I study was initiated in 2021, and top-line data is expected later in the year.

Prothena is also evaluating PRX012, an investigational high-potency monoclonal antibody targeting a key epitope at the N-terminus of amyloid beta (Aβ) for treating AD.   The FDA granted Fast Track designation for PRX012 for the treatment of AD. A phase I multiple ascending dose (MAD) study is expected to be initiated by year-end 2022.

The company is also developing a dual Aβ-Tau vaccine — a potential prevention and treatment for AD — to target key epitopes within Aβ and tau proteins to promote amyloid clearance and block pathogenic tau interaction. An Investigational New Drug (IND) application for the vaccine is anticipated in 2023.

The company is also evaluating prasinezumab in collaboration with Roche for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. PRTA earned a $60 million milestone payment in 2021 upon dosing the first patient in the global phase IIb PADOVA study for prasinezumab from Roche. The study results are expected in 2024.

It is also evaluating birtamimab, a potential treatment for AL amyloidosis.  It reached a Special Protocol Assessment agreement with FDA and initiated a confirmatory phase III AFFIRM-AL study of birtamimab in Mayo Stage IV patients with AL amyloidosis in 2021. Results are expected in 2024.

Novo Nordisk has acquired Prothena’s clinical-stage antibody, PRX004 (now NNC6019) and a broader ATTR amyloidosis program. Prothena is eligible to receive a total aggregate of up to $1.23 billion and has received $60 million upfront payment from NVO in 2021. A phase II study of NNC6019 in patients with ATTR cardiomyopathy is being conducted by Novo Nordisk

How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?

It turns out, estimates revision have trended upward during the past month.

The consensus estimate has shifted 58.78% due to these changes.

VGM Scores

At this time, Prothena has a poor Growth Score of F, however its Momentum Score is doing a lot better with an A. However, the stock was allocated a grade of D on the value side, putting it in the bottom 40% for this investment strategy.

Overall, the stock has an aggregate VGM Score of D. If you aren't focused on one strategy, this score is the one you should be interested in.

Outlook

Estimates have been broadly trending upward for the stock, and the magnitude of these revisions looks promising. Notably, Prothena has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). We expect an in-line return from the stock in the next few months.


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