First Berlin – Valneva SE Research Update (14/03/2018)

First Berlin Equity Research has published a research update on Valneva SE (ISIN: FR0004056851). Analyst Christian Orquera reiterated his BUY rating and increased the price target from EUR 4.70 to EUR 5.70.

Valneva announced yesterday that its live-attenuated vaccine candidate VLA1553 has entered a Phase I clinical study in the US. The randomised, observer-blinded, dose escalation, multi-centre study will evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of the vaccine candidate in approx. 120 healthy adults. The Phase I study will assess three different dose levels of the vaccine candidate applying a single-shot immunisation. The study design entails monitoring of antibody persistence as well as an additional vaccination with the highest vaccine dose at 6 and 12 months. Through the revaccination Valneva intends to demonstrate protection against vaccine induced viremia (presence of the virus in the blood) and hence first signs of potential efficacy. In our view, the convenient one-shot formulation represents a substantial advantage over competitors' vaccines requiring several shots. The company anticipates first data from the trial in early 2019. We have included the vaccine candidate in our SOTP-valuation-model, obtaining a higher price target of €5.70 (previously €4.70). Top-line data on the lead vaccine candidate VLA15 (Lyme) due within the next few weeks will be the next important pipeline related near-term catalyst for Valneva's share price development. We reiterate our Buy recommendation.