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Sage Jumps on Positive Data from SAGE-718 Trial

Sage Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: SAGE) has revealed positive results from the Phase 2 LUMINARY Study of SAGE-718, which is designed to treat mild cognitive impairment and mild dementia due to Alzheimer’s disease.

Sage engages in the development and commercialization of novel medicines to treat brain health disorders. Following the news, shares of the company rallied 11.8% on Friday to close at $37.

The company found that SAGE-718 improved performance and learning and memory in 26 patients, who were given the drug once daily for 14 days. On the last day, the patients showed improvements from baseline.

Further, on day 28, statistically significant improvement in the Montreal Cognitive Assessment was observed.

Jim Doherty, Ph.D., Chief Development Officer at Sage, said, “We are encouraged by the positive results shared from the LUMINARY Study, which are consistent with signals suggesting improvement in cognitive performance seen across the SAGE-718 program, including in people with Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease.”

“We look forward to learning more about the potential of SAGE-718 as we continue to advance our program with multiple ongoing or planned Phase 2 studies,” he added.

Analysts’ Take

Last week, Berenberg Bank analyst Esther Hong initiated coverage of Sage with a Hold rating and a price target of $37.

Hong said, “While SAGE has one marketed product – Zulresso (we expect peak sales of $30m) – the stock has been (and will likely continue to be in the near term) driven by the outlook for zuranalone. With limited proof of meaningfully more effective outcomes than current standards of care regarding duration of effect, we struggle to see meaningful upside to the stock.”

Based on seven Buys and nine Holds, the stock has a Moderate Buy consensus rating. SAGE’s average price target of $58.67 implies 58.6% upside potential from current levels. Shares have lost 52.5% over the past year.

Positive Sentiment

TipRanks’ Stock Investors tool shows that investors currently have a Very Positive stance on Sage Therapeutics, as 10.9% of investors increased their exposure to the stock over the past 30 days.

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