Solietje schreef op 28 september 2018 15:55:www.fool.com/investing/2018/09/28/bet...
The case for Galapagos
Galapagos can't boast of enormously successful approved products like Vertex can -- at least not yet. However, Galapagos does have a remarkably deep pipeline for a clinical-stage biotech.
The company's lead pipeline candidate, filgotinib, attracted the attention and some big bucks from Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD). Gilead licensed filgotinib in 2015, with Galapagos receiving an upfront payment of $725 million, the potential for up to $1.25 billion in milestone payments, generous tiered royalties, and a profit split in some markets.
Gilead and Galapagos announced positive results in September from a phase 3 study of the drug in treating rheumatoid arthritis. Two more late-stage studies are underway. If all goes as well with these two studies, Galapagos could have its first approved product in the not-too-distant future. Filgotinib is widely expected to become a blockbuster if approved.
Galapagos also has another late-stage pipeline candidate with GLPG1690. The company plans to begin dosing patients in a phase 3 study of the drug in treating idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) later this year. In addition, Galapagos expects to soon announce interim results from a phase 2 study of a triple-drug CF combo.
Although Galapagos doesn't generate product revenue yet, the biotech's market cap tops $6 billion. This reflects investors' great expectations for the company's pipeline candidates, particularly filgotinib.
I think that Galapagos and Gilead will have a big winner with filgotinib. However, I'm not so optimistic about Galapagos' chances with its triple-drug combo for CF. Galapagos reported disappointing results in June from a study of one of the drugs in that combo. Those results led AbbVie to pull out from participating in a second planned triple-drug combo.
But while I like Galapagos' prospects with filgotinib, I like Vertex's overall prospects a lot more. My view is that Vertex will continue to dominate the CF market. And I expect the biotech to use the profits from its CF drugs to fund expansion into new areas of growth. In my opinion, Vertex is the hands-down winner between these two biotech stocks. P