Pfizer Drops After Pulling Obesity-Drug Study Following Patient

NYSE:PFE   Pfizer, Inc.
Pfizer will retool its obesity drug efforts, but the delay is a blow to the group's ambitions to challenge Novo Nordisk and Lilly in the fast-developing space.

Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) - shares slumped Friday after the drugmaker said it would not advance a study of its two-dose obesity treatment, following a high level of side effects in patients involved in the Phase II trial.

Pfizer said it would instead focus on a single-dose option. Trials of its danuglipron treated showed good results in weight loss but induced vomiting and nausea in patients, which led to what it called "high discontinuation rates" compared with those taking a placebo.

Pfizer's Mikael Dolsten, president of worldwide research and development, in late October called the danuglipron study "our main opportunity here for getting data to review for obesity, in fact, to diabetes" in a call with investors.

For Pfizer, a Setback in Weight-loss Market
The decision marks a significant setback in Pfizer's ambitions to enter the weight-loss drug market, which is currently dominated by Novo Nordisk's Wegovy. Pfizer rival Eli Lilly (LLY) - Get Free Report last month also won approval for its own weight-loss treatment, Zepbound, from the Food and Drug Administration.

At last check Pfizer stock was trading off 4.7% just above $28.91 That's a bit more than half its 52-week high near $55, set in mid-December 2022.

Pfizer in October slashed its full-year sales and profit forecasts amid a slump in demand for covid treatments, It told investors it would write off around $4.6 billion in inventories of Paxlovid, its oral covid treatment, while taking a further $5.5 billion noncash charge against its third-quarter earnings.

Price Momentum
PFE is trading near the bottom of its 52-week range and below its 200-day simple moving average.

What does this mean?
Investors have been pushing the share price lower, and the stock still appears to have downward momentum. This is a negative sign for the stock's future value.

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