Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. shares inched 0.29% higher to $202.21 Thursday. This proved to be an all-around favorable trading session for the stock market, with the S&P 500 Index SPX rising 0.52% to 4,319.94 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA rising 0.38% to 34,633.53.
Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. closed $103.87 short of its 52-week high ($306.08), which the company reached on July 7th. The stock demonstrated a mixed performance when compared to some of its competitors Thursday, as Johnson & Johnson JNJ rose 0.74% to $165.96, Merck & Co. Inc. MRK rose 0.28% to $77.99, and AbbVie Inc. ABBV rose 1.44% to $114.26.
Vertex shares tanked by 10% in a single day after the company halted the development of VX-864, a drug under investigation for treating a liver disease called alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency. Although VX-864 met the primary endpoint in phase 2, researchers did not believe it would translate into meaningful clinical benefit. In addition to profit-sharing agreements, Vertex already paid the latter $900 million upfront to jointly develop the technology. In clinical studies, Trikafta demonstrated a 10% to 13% benefit in improving patients’ lung function, improved their quality of life and body mass index, and offered respiratory relief. However, those benefits come at a staggering cost of $311,000 per year.