Why the Mesoblast (ASX:MSB) share price is surging 14%

The Mesoblast (ASX: MSB) share price is surging today after the company reported promising COVID-19 trial results in its quarterly update.

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The Mesoblast Limited (ASX: MSB) share price is surging this morning after the Aussie company’s latest quarterly results. The cellular medicine manufacturer provided an update for the third quarter ended 31 March 2021 (Q3 2021). 

At the time of writing, the Mesoblast share price is trading at $2.09, up 14.21%. 

Why is the Mesoblast share price rocketing?

The Aussie medicine company this morning announced results from its COVID-19 acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) trial.

Mesoblast CEO Silviu Itescu said, “We are very excited about the top-line results announced today from the trial of remestemcel-L in patients on mechanical ventilation due to COVID-19”.

Results showed that patients receiving remestemcel-L had reduced mortality through 60 days in the pre-specified population under 65 years old. In fact, those using Mesoblast’s drug saw 46% lower mortality through day 50.

The trial also showed mortality reduction from the drug was “accompanied by increased days alive off mechanical ventilation and reduced days in hospital”.

Mr Itescu said the results have “the potential to make a substantial impact in outcomes for this critical patient population”. Investors are driving the Mesoblast share price higher in early trade on the back of this morning’s trial updates.

Mesoblast has now entered into a license and collaboration agreement with Novartis for the development, manufacture and commercialisation of remestemcel-L with an initial focus on treating severe COVID-19.

The company also completed a US$110 million private placement during the quarter. That helped boost the company’s cash balance to US$158.3 million at quarter-end with net cash usage of US$25.8 million. 

The Aussie healthcare group continues to engage with the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Mesoblast is seeking to gain approval to use remestemcel-L in treating steroid-refractory Acute Graft Versus Host Disease.

In further news driving the Mesoblast share price, results from the company’s chronic lower back pain (CLBP) trial were also promising. The results indicated that treatment “may be greatest when inflammation is high and before irreversible fibrosis has occurred in the intervertebral disc”.

Foolish takeaway

The March quarter was another action-packed one for the biotech and has resulted in the Mesoblast share price surging higher this morning. This will come as welcome news for shareholders, with the company’s shares still trading around 20% lower since mid-February. 

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Motley Fool contributor Ken Hall has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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