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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

-=Novavax (NVAX) : RSV, NanoFlu vaccine updates

Earlier this year, analysts said investors in Novavax Inc. would be watching closely for updates in December that could be key to indicating the future of the Gaithersburg biotech.

Shares of Novavax (NASDAQ: NVAX) fell 22 percent Tuesday after the company disappointed investors by saying it would announce data for the phase 1/2 trial of its NanoFlu seasonal flu vaccine candidate in February. Investors had been looking for results on the program this month.

The company also said it will continue a phase 3 clinical trial of an RSV vaccine candidate for infants via maternal immunization. RSV is a common source of dangerous infections in infants and older adults, and Novavax is targeting a worldwide RSV vaccine market that exceeds $6 billion with multiple vaccine candidates.

This disappointment on Wall Street is something we've seen before with Novavax. In July, analysts said Novavax's cautious path forward did not meet expectations. At that time, Novavax opted to run yet another phase 2 clinical trial on its RSV vaccine candidate for elderly patients instead of moving into its phase 3 clinical trial — the final test of a product's success. That vaccine candidate had a stunning phase 3 trial failure in 2016 leading the company to retool its approach.

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