Anavex Life Sciences (AVXL) surged Monday on a positive study in Rett Syndrome, helping AVXL stock extend a triple-digit gain over a five-week rally.
The biotech company is working on a treatment for Rett Syndrome, a neurological disorder that affects almost exclusively girls. Anavex’s approach activates the gene responsible for the sigma-1 receptor. That receptor provides a “housekeeping” function in the body. Women who received the drug showed clinical improvements on scales measuring behavioral or mood issues.
Walter Kaufmann, Anavex’s chief medical officer, said the clinical improvements following a biomarker change — the increase in sigma-1 receptors — are promising for early intervention in Rett Syndrome.
In morning trading on the stock market today, AVXL stock soared 18.9% near 26.30.
AVXL Stock Rallies On Rett Drug
The study is the first that suggests increasing sigma-1 receptors leads to clinical improvement in Rett Syndrome patients, Anavex said in a news release.
Anavex tested patients’ responses on the Rett Syndrome Behavioral Questionnaire, a 45-item checklist of behavioral and emotional characteristics of the disorder. Patients who received Anavex’s drug showed a 14.5-point improvement over the placebo group.
Bullishly for AVXL stock, patients showed improvements on the Anxiety, Depression and Mood Scale, a list of 55 items measuring symptoms. Patients developed a 12.9-point improvement over the placebo group, Anavex said.
Now, the company is planning to meet with the Food and Drug Administration to discuss its path forward.
Shares Are Strongly Rated
Anavex shares are on a run this year.
AVXL stock started 2021 as a dollar stock. Shares rocketed on a day in February as excitement swelled for Alzheimer’s stocks. Since then, AVXL stock has remained bound between 10 and 16, hitting a low point at 10.01 on May 16.
But after May 13, shares rallied strongly. As of midday Monday, AVXL stock has surged more than 157% since that day. Shares also have a perfect Relative Strength Rating of 99, according to IBD Digital. This puts Anavex stock in the leading 1% of all stocks in terms of 12-month performance.
Follow Allison Gatlin on Twitter at @IBD_AGatlin.
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