AbbVie's (ABBV) - Get Report fledgling rheumatoid arthritis treatment Rinvoq is showing promise and appears to be tracking "meaningfully ahead of expectations," according to analysts at Piper Jaffray.
Analyst Christopher Raymond reiterated the firm's overweight rating on the North Chicago biopharma while increasing its price target to $92 from $90.
At last check Tuesday AbbVie was trading down 1.2% at $86.
Piper Jaffray's bullish outlook on Rinvoq is fueled by the results of a new survey of 100 rheumatologists, who provided mostly positive feedback about the drug. A rival treatment still enjoys success, but Rinvoq could soon be on its heels, the analyst wrote.
"And in terms of reported sales contact," AbbVie's rheumatology focus on Rinvoq appears to rival that "of its Humira effort, and then finally, when compared to the prior two rheumatoid arthritis launches (Olumiant and Kevzara), unaided awareness, brand familiarity and initial user base are all head-and-shoulders above."
"[Just] months post-launch, ... Rinvoq registers 1% patient share," Raymond wrote. But "asked to delineate most recent scripts, doctors give Rinvoq 8% share. When asked to project share in six months, rheumatologists indicate Rinvoq's share will grow to 6%."
"In that Rinvoq largely takes a back seat to [AbbVie treatment] Skyrizi as a key growth driver in the minds of most investors we speak with, we see this feedback as a welcome source of upside in coming quarters," Raymond wrote.