NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Galectin Therapeutics (GALT) - Get Reportwere slumping 8.56% to $1.28 on heavy trading volume mid-afternoon Thursday as the biopharmaceutical company's fatty liver disease drug failed to meet its primary and secondary endpoints in a phase II clinical trial. 

The GR-MD-02 therapy is meant to treat patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) liver disease with advanced fibrosis. 

H.C. Wainwright subsequently downgraded the Berkeley Lake, GA-based company's stock to "neutral" from "buy." 

The firm also slashed its price target to $1.50 from $8, according to TheFly.

H.C. Wainwright added that it has "increased doubts" about the true therapeutic effect of GR-MD-02 on fibrosis or cirrhosis. 

More than 1.77 million Galectin shares have traded so far today vs. the 30-day average volume of 999,187 shares.

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