Research analysts at Mizuho assumed coverage on shares of AveXis (NASDAQ:AVXS) in a note issued to investors on Monday. The firm set a “buy” rating and a $147.00 price target on the stock. Mizuho’s price target points to a potential upside of 31.37% from the stock’s previous close.

The analysts wrote, “We expect a pre-BLA meeting in 2Q/3Q18, and potential regulatory approval in 2019 for type 1 SMA. We also see additional upside for AVXS-101 in SMA type 2 patients. KeyPoints Gene therapy is coming of age. After years of advancements and discovery in the field of gene therapy, we believe a number of companies are on the cusp of gaining approval for these novel one-time treatments. We see strong potential for leading candidate products and take confidence from the recent unanimous FDA approval of Spark’s (ONCE, Buy, $79 PT) Luxturna. A significant opportunity for gene therapy in the treatment of SMA. With approximately 60% of the incident SMA population affected by type 1 and limited treatment options, AveXis’ lead product candidate AVXS-101 could have a substantial impact. Given strong data from a recent phase 1 trial, we believe AVXS-101 could capture a significant market share in SMA type 1.””

AVXS has been the topic of several other research reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of AveXis from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, October 30th. Bank of America decreased their target price on shares of AveXis from $115.00 to $112.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, November 10th. Canaccord Genuity set a $110.00 target price on shares of AveXis and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 14th. Royal Bank of Canada upped their target price on shares of AveXis from $92.00 to $97.00 and gave the stock a “sector perform” rating in a research report on Friday, November 10th. Finally, BidaskClub cut shares of AveXis from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 14th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $116.95.

AveXis (NASDAQ AVXS) traded up $2.36 on Monday, reaching $111.90. 306,673 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 670,478. The firm has a market capitalization of $4,020.00 and a price-to-earnings ratio of -20.05. AveXis has a 52-week low of $53.94 and a 52-week high of $128.00.

In other news, VP Andrew F. Knudten sold 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $118.13, for a total value of $236,260.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 7,000 shares in the company, valued at $826,910. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Brian K. Kaspar sold 15,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $94.73, for a total transaction of $1,420,950.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 1,826,502 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $173,024,534.46. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 57,560 shares of company stock valued at $6,160,062. 18.60% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank boosted its holdings in shares of AveXis by 57.5% in the fourth quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,241 shares of the company’s stock valued at $137,000 after acquiring an additional 453 shares in the last quarter. Amalgamated Bank boosted its holdings in shares of AveXis by 19.6% in the third quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 3,187 shares of the company’s stock valued at $308,000 after acquiring an additional 523 shares in the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC boosted its holdings in shares of AveXis by 2.9% in the second quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 20,943 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,721,000 after acquiring an additional 598 shares in the last quarter. Jennison Associates LLC boosted its holdings in shares of AveXis by 0.5% in the fourth quarter. Jennison Associates LLC now owns 185,094 shares of the company’s stock valued at $20,484,000 after acquiring an additional 883 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Strs Ohio bought a new position in shares of AveXis in the third quarter valued at approximately $116,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 81.52% of the company’s stock.

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About AveXis

AveXis, Inc is a clinical-stage gene therapy company. The Company operates through the developing and commercializing gene therapy treatments for patients suffering from neurological genetic diseases segment. The Company’s product candidate, AVXS-101, is its gene therapy product candidate that is in a Phase I clinical trial for the treatment of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) Type 1, which is a genetic disorder characterized by motor neuron loss and associated muscle deterioration.

Analyst Recommendations for AveXis (NASDAQ:AVXS)

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