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October 17, 2013
Cognitive Dissonance at Lilly
If there is some chemistry hiring going on out there in the big pharma world, and more to come, Eli Lilly does not look like it's going to be joining that kind of party. The analysts following its stock are getting increasingly worked up:
As the analyst notes, there are two distinct schools of thought about Lilly's pipeline. One, represented by Tim Anderson at Bernstein, is that Lilly's broad pipeline of late-stage assets will rescue the company from the loss of patents on the company's top drugs. The bear view, though, is that more failures of high-profile programs--like the recent Phase III failure of ramucirumab for breast cancer or last year's fiasco with the solanezumab flop in Alzheimer's--will leave Lilly no way out except with a restructuring. And that would alter CEO John Lechleiter's long-term plan for staying the course with in-house research.
Lilly's position is simple: Everything is great.
One of the only bright spots is the continuing clinical success of their injectable GLP-1 agonist dulaglutide. Nothing had better happen to that one - it really does look like an advance in type II diabetes therapy. But even if everything goes according to plan with that one, things are going to be rough in Indianapolis.
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