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CRISPR, Intellia, and Caribou Receive a US Genome-Editing Patent

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CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing granted US patent

On June 19, the Regents of the University of California, the University of Vienna, and Emmanuelle Charpentier, co-owners of fundamental intellectual property associated with CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing technology, were granted a US patent by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent is covered under US patent number 10,000,772 (or “the 772 patent”).

CRISPR Therapeutics (CRSP), Intellia Therapeutics (NTLA), and Caribou Biosciences jointly noted that the 722 patent completely covers CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing with guide RNA (ribonucleic acid), which is being widely used in the biopharmaceutical industry.

Update on CRISPR and Vertex’s applications for CTX001

In May, the FDA put a clinical hold on CRISPR Therapeutics’ and Vertex Pharmaceuticals’ Investigational New Drug Application for CTX001, an investigational gene-edited autologous hematopoietic stem cell therapy for the treatment of sickle cell disease. CRISPR Therapeutics and Vertex Pharmaceuticals had filed the application to the FDA for the initiation of Phase 1 and 2 trials of CTX001.

CRISPR Therapeutics’ and Vertex Pharmaceuticals’ plans for the initiation of the trials in Europe for adult individuals with transfusion-dependent beta-thalassemia remain unchanged, and they’re expected to start during the second half of 2018.

Stock performance of CRISPR

On June 18, CRISPR Therapeutics stock saw a rise of 5.6% and closed at $62.63.

On June 18, CRISPR Therapeutics’ stock price closed at $62.63, which reflected a rise of ~337% from its 52-week low of $14.32 on June 20, 2017.

Analysts’ recommendations

Of the analysts tracking CRISPR Therapeutics in June, six have recommended “buys,” while two have recommended “holds” on the stock.

Of the analysts tracking Intellia Therapeutics in June, three have recommended “strong buys,” while another three have recommended “buys” on its stock. One analyst has recommended a “hold” on Intellia Therapeutics.

Of the 24 analysts tracking Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) in June 2018, nine have recommended “strong buys” on the stock, while 11 have recommended “buys,” and four have recommended “holds” on the stock.

On June 18, CRISPR Therapeutics, Intellia Therapeutics, and Vertex Pharmaceuticals had consensus 12-month target prices of $67.07, $48.75, and $191.45, respectively, representing returns on investment of ~8.3%, ~74.1%, and ~24.6%, respectively, over the next 12 months.

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