The stock price is soaring for local drugmaker La Jolla Pharmaceutical Co. following promising clinical trial data on its experimental blood pressure drug.
The local company is studying the drug, called LJPC-501, in patients who have dangerously low blood pressure, which can lead to a condition called “distributed shock” in which tissues and organs don’t receive adequate blood flow. LJPC-501 was developed to treat those who don’t respond to blood pressure regulating drugs. La Jolla Pharmaceutical Co. released early Phase 3 clinical trial results Monday, showing that the drug had met its primary goal during the trial.
The company’s stock price skyrocketed over 83 percent on the news, bringing the price per share to $36.53 at midmorning Monday and the company’s market cap to $729 million.
Following the release of this data, La Jolla now says it plans to file for regulatory approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in the second half of 2017.
The company released fourth quarter and full year (2016) earnings on Friday, showing a net loss of $24.9 million in Q4 and a net loss of $78.2 million for the full year. The company’s research and development expenses more than doubled in 2016 compared to the prior year, from $29 million to $62.3 million.
La Jolla Pharmaceutical Co. ended the year with $65.7 million in cash and cash equivalents, enough to fund operations of the company into 2018, according to the company.