By: Adam Feuerstein | 08/06/14 - 12:07 PM EDT
(SRPT) disappoints me.
By publicizing its outreach to the U.S. government about an experimental ebola treatment, Sarepta comes off looking like just another opportunistic, self-promoting drug developer. Sarepta isn't wrong to remind the U.S. government about the drug in its freezer which might be effective against the ebola virus, but why talk to the media about it?
If Sarepta's ebola contract with the government is revived, issue a press release on the material news. Until then, the company should emulate the respectable low-key approach taken by Tekmira Pharmaceuticals (TKMR) and not the crass, stock-pumping antics of Hemispherx Biopharma (HEB) or NewLink Genetics (NLNK).
Ebola is big news today, but Sarepta has one job right now: Finishing the eteplirsen regulatory package and delivering it to the FDA for review before the end of the year. Nothing else is more important to Sarepta, shareholders or Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients and their families. Talking up ebola sounds like a distraction from Sarepta's priority. It sounds like the company is losing focus.
When a DMD parent frustrated by Sarepta inability to make enough eteplirsen for a compassionate use program reads a sentence like the one below, it's a slap in the face:
Sarepta Therapeutics says it has enough doses of its injectible drug - AVI-7537 - to treat about two dozen patients within a week and could ramp up a supply for another 100 patients within a few months.
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