Biotech firm Amyris, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMRS) and ImmunityBio (NASDAQ: IBRX), a clinical-stage immunotherapy company, have concluded their joint venture (JV) agreement to support the commercialization of a next-generation COVID-19 vaccine.
Following the news, shares of Amyris rose 8.3% to close at $5.86 on Monday, while shares of ImmunityBio had jumped 24% at the close.
Amyris and ImmunityBio will combine their vaccine technology with their manufacturing capabilities. Notably, upon completion of successful human trials and regulatory approval, the joint venture aims to deliver the second-generation vaccine in 2022 to underserved parts of the world, where cost and supply-chain limitations have made access to current vaccine technology challenging.
Global Chief Scientific and Medical Officer at ImmunityBio, Patrick Soon-Shiong, said, “We are pleased to combine our expertise in human trials, T-Cell technology and our access to RNA manufacturing capacity with the Amyris and Infectious Disease Research Institute (IDRI) RNA technology platform and Amyris’ adjuvant technology. Combined we have a real opportunity to provide true immunity against COVID-19 variants along with a platform that can quickly adapt to a future potential respiratory virus. We are focused on completing human trials and delivering vaccines in 2022.”
Amit Dayal of H.C. Wainwright recently maintained a Buy rating on Amyris and a price target of $30 (412% upside potential).
Dayal expects Amyris to record a loss per share of $0.11 in the fourth quarter of 2021.
Consensus among analysts is a Strong Buy based on 3 unanimous Buys. The average Amyris price target of $21.33 implies 264% upside potential from current levels. However, shares have fallen 16.5% over the past year.
Bloggers Weigh In
TipRanks data shows that financial blogger opinions are 71% Bullish on AMRS, compared to a sector average of 70%.