This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

After Exubera, Uncertainty Reigns

Long before Pfizer's (PFE - Get Report) decision to stop selling Exubera, Wall Street was already having second thoughts about inhaled insulin.

Now, with Exubera's failure, analysts are sharpening their focus on competing products, none of which are expected to reach the market until 2009 or 2010 at the earliest.

The brightest spotlight is on companies with experimental products in late-stage clinical trials. Do they keep spending hundreds of millions of dollars in the belief that they can do a better job than Pfizer, which just took a $2.8 billion pretax charge to drop inhaled insulin?

Exubera's inability to catch on "negatively impacts the other inhaled insulin products in development as it was necessary for Pfizer to ease the barriers in the marketplace for later entrants to be successful," says the independent publication BioMedTracker, which analyzes drug and biotechnology developments.

"We are lowering our estimates for all the drugs in the inhaled insulin market," the research publication said Oct. 18. "We think at least some of the new entrants will do better than Exubera, because some of its unpopularity was likely due to its bulky device and difficult dosing."

Although many observers had turned sour on Exubera well before last week, at one time, after it received U.S. regulatory approval in January 2006, there was considerable enthusiasm for it and its competitors.

Despite Exubera's big lead, analysts initially viewed its endorsement as good for the Eli Lilly (LLY - Get Report) partnership with Alkermes (ALKS), Novo Nordisk (NVO - Get Report), and MannKind (MNKD). Their experimental products are in late-stage clinical testing.

Enthusiasm was bolstered by analysts' belief in company-sponsored studies that said many diabetics wanted an alternative to injectable insulin.

"Some -- certainly including this analyst -- may have overestimated the motivation of diabetics to adopt the clinical and disease management advantages based on market research," says Andrew Forman, of WR Hambrecht, in a research report to clients.

1 of 3

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,461.13 +73.92 0.43%
S&P 500 2,038.65 +9.10 0.45%
NASDAQ 4,726.1890 +44.6920 0.95%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs