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Piper Jaffray Initiates Coverage of Trovagene with an Overweight Rating

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Piper Jaffray today initiated coverage of molecular cancer diagnostic firm Trovagene with an Overweight rating and a $6.25 price target. 

Piper Jaffray analyst William Quirk estimated Trovagene revenues for full-year 2015 at $900,000 with a loss per share of $.92. In a research report, he said that while the company has successfully launched into the qualitative space, with tests for detecting BRAF, V600E, and KRAS, and plans to launch a test for EGFR T790M in Q1 2015, larger opportunities await Trovagene with expected launches this year and in 2016 into single and panel mutation monitoring. Those markets represent a $1 billion opportunity initially and $4.3 billion longer-term, Quirk said. 

"Initial quantitative data is encouraging, with mutations found in urine correlating to treatment response," he said. "We believe Trovagene's value proposition centers around the 2015 release of quantitative [cell-free DNA] tests, as well as the late 2015/2016 launch of panels designed specifically for melanoma, colorectal, pancreatic, NSCLC, and breast cancer mutational load monitoring." 

Quirk also noted a deal struck by Trovagene with Illumina in 2013 to evaluate Trovagene's technology and said that if the collaboration leads to a commercial product, his estimates for the firm "may be too low." 

Last week, San Diego-based Trovagene announced it raised $23 million in a public offering of its common stock.

In morning trading Tuesday on the Nasdaq, shares of Trovagene increased 3 percent to $5.15.

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