Pozen poised for profits after Vimovo wins approval

Shares of Pozen shot up 21 percent on Friday after the FDA sanctioned its new combo therapy for arthritis. Vimovo, developed in partnership with AstraZeneca, contains the NSAID pain drug naproxen along with the main ingredient for Nexium. London-based Gbola Amusa estimates that the drug--intended for arthritis patients in danger of developing an ulcer--could reap $500 million in sales revenue in 2014.

The approval opens a new chapter in the development story of the Chapel Hill, NC-based Pozen. The developer will earn a $20 million milestone check on the approval and will also garner a new royalty stream, which Eun Yang at Jefferies believes will wipe out the biotech's red ink and make close to $11 million in new annual revenue in 2013. The royalty stream could make Pozen profitable by 2012, reports localtechwire.

Pozen's announcement, though, was largely focused on the therapeutic benefits of the new drug. Data from study PN400-301 showed a 4.1 percent incidence of gastric ulcers in patients taking Vimovo, compared with 23.1 percent among patients taking enteric-coated naproxen. Researchers also raised a red flag for hypertension, noting that all NSAIDs are linked to the condition.

- here's Pozen's press release
- check out the story from localtechwire