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Auris Medical trades near a historical low, with a lot to prove

Switzerland-based pharmaceutical company Auris Medical Holding (NASDAQ: EARS) has lost almost 70% of its value since the start of this year. Investors have been anxiously waiting to hear some good news related to the company’s hearing-disorder treatments that are currently in phase 3 clinical trials, but it’s been a pretty long wait.

The company does not have any products in the market, and hence financing for its research and development is still on a shaky platform. Though it has been cutting down on its operating losses over the past three years, most of this was primarily due to reductions in the R&D expenses, which prompts investors to question its pipeline strategy.

pharma stocks
Image for representation (Photo by Drew Hays on Unsplash)

Earlier this year, the stock received a notice from Nasdaq after its share price fell below $1. In order to save itself from delisting, the company was forced to do a 1-for-20 reverse stock split. Despite this reverse stock split, which became effective on May 1, the stock is currently trading near an all-time low.  

Auris Medical has also shifted its earnings announcement to a semi-annual basis, from a quarterly basis, in a move that is expected to save it from aggressive investor scrutiny.

auris medicals product pipeline

Auris Medical’s two product candidates are in phase 3 clinical development for the treatment of acute inner ear tinnitus, and acute inner ear hearing loss. The company is developing a therapy for the treatment of vestibular disorders, and other pre-clinical stage products for treating certain types of tinnitus.

LISTEN TO: Auris Medical Holding Q4 2018 earnings conference call

Interestingly, the company’s inner ear hearing loss drug Sonsuvi has orphan drug designation from both EMA and FDA. If it clears the clinical trials, the drug would have an early mover advantage in the US and Europe.

Despite the tumbling share price, Wall Street analysts have a positive outlook towards the stock. Needham has a Buy rating on the stock, while ROTH Capital, which recently launched its coverage, also initiated with a Buy recommendation.

On the other hand, there has been a slight spike in the short interest in the stock. Around 8.2% of EARS stock is currently being shorted.

Listen to on-demand earnings calls and hear how management responds to analysts’ questions

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