AstraZeneca’s (AZN) decision to stop the Phase IIa INEXAS trials for AZD9412 has caused shares in its partner Synairgen (SNG:AIM) to crash as investors jump ship. Shares in the latter are collapsing, down 34% at 22.33p.

AZD9412 inhaled interferon beta is a testing programme aimed at asthma sufferers that was developed by Synairgen and licensed to AstraZeneca in June 2014.

'The interim analysis confirmed the positive safety and tolerability profile seen in previous trials, and inhaled IFN-b remains an interesting treatment opportunity for patients with respiratory disease,' AstraZeneca comments today. The drug giant now plans a review process of all the collected data and will also look at the study itself, before coming to any firm conclusions about how next to proceed.


FinnCap supports the decision, pointing out that the costs do not currently justify the implied benefits, especially given the numbers of extra patients needed. The broker has maintained its current forecasts for Synairgen, although that simply implies years more of losses.

Analysts at broker N+1 Singer say that dropping the trial is disappointing but it too remains positive on Synairgen going forward, sticking with its ‘buy’ recommendation. Full year results to 31 December 2016 are expected in March 2017.

Issue Date: 12 Oct 2016