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Bellerophon Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:BLPH): Buy On The Dip

Bellerophon Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:BLPH): Buy On The Dip
Written by
Chris Sandburg
Published on
April 13, 2017
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Bellerophon Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:BLPH) put out some data at the end of last week relates to its lead development asset, INOpulse. Markets have sold off on the company since release, and Bellerophon shares currently trade at an around 20% discount to their prerelease price.There's some suggestion that the data is underwhelming, and that markets are seeing its implications as inhibitory to a long term approval for the INOpulse system in its target indication.We took a look at the numbers, and they aren’t underwhelming. They fall in line with what's come before, and by proxy in line with what can be expected. There's some credence to the suggestion that they aren’t any real improvement over current standard of care in terms of what difference they make on a patient's key metrics, but as we've addressed before, this development program isn’t just about key metrics.Here's a look at what the numbers came in at, and what we are watching for going forward.For those new to this company, it's a biotech play looking to get the above mentioned INOpulse to as a therapy for (primarily, and initially) a condition called pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Patients that suffer from PAH have high blood pressure in the arteries that go from the heart to the lungs, and this brings about a range of problems, from breathing issues to potential stroke. Current SOC is nitric oxide, and Bellerophon has taken this SOC and changed the delivery to a sort of pulse type method that introduces a pulse of NO at the early stage of a patient's breath.The just released data, which came from an investigator led study carried out in London, ON and the Cardiovascular Institute, Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA, looked at the impact of INOpulse on two metrics – pulmonary artery pressures (PAP) and total pulmonary resistance (TPR), before and after exercise. At rest, INOpulse led to a consistent trend towards improvement in both PAP and TPR. This trend was preserved and demonstrated a blunting effect with exercise. In a comparison that looked at the pre/post exercise group with and without treatment, again the trend was preserved.Like we said, it's not overwhelming evidence of an improvement over standard of care, but there's a trend towards improvement, and that's not what's important here, anyway.What is important, if not improvement in the key metrics over SOC?Well, the current SOC is NO, but it's delivered by way of a large tank that a patient has to wheel around with them, or strap themselves to and take immobile delivery. The former, the wheeling around of a large gas canister, generally serves to exacerbate the problems that characterize PAH as a condition. INOpulse is far smaller (the size of VHS cassette is the best comparison). It straps to a patient's waist by way of a belt like holster, and delivers the NO pulse as required, on demand.If a patient is given the choice between one of these systems, then, and a gas canister, chances are they are going to go for the former. Even if the INOpulse system isn’t quite an as effective treatment (and we're not saying this is the case, but if it turned out to be), we still think a patient would rather go for it. Perhaps there's even room for a combination of the two – a patient can use the gas canister delivery at home and the INOpulse delivery when on the move. Again, speculation, but far from ill advised.Anyway, the really important trial, the phase III, is set to hit press mid year. The point here is that the latest data doesn’t really tell us much about the chances of this trial succeeding, and if it does, it's certainly not negative in its implications.We will be updating our subscribers as soon as we know more. For the latest updates on BLPH, sign up below!Disclosure: We have no position in BLPH and have not been compensated for this article.

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