Viking Therapeutics (VKTX) is developing VK2735, a GLP-1/GIP dual agonist, for treatment of obesity. VK2735 is in Phase II as a weekly subQ injection and Phase I as an oral form with new proof-of-concept data expected in 1Q 2024, explains John McCamant, editor of The Medical Technology Stock Letter.

Roche is buying a VKTX competitor, privately held Carmot Therapeutics, for $2.7 billion in cash and up to $400 million in potential milestone payments. Carmot's pipeline includes CT-388, a sub-q dual GLP-1/GIP agonist for obesity. 

VK2735 has a very competitive efficacy/safety profile compared with CT-388 and also includes an oral formulation. Next up are the two catalysts for VKTX in 1H24, with data from the Phase II VENTURE study of subQ '2735 in obese patients in 1H24 as well as data from the oral formulation of '2735 in 1Q24.

We continue to believe the weight loss profile for '2735 will get better with further follow up and look forward to data from the Phase II VENTURE study in 1H24 and data from the Phase I oral formulation study of '2735 in 1Q24. In our view, VKTX is still significantly undervalued and could easily be worth more than the $2.7 billion Roche just paid for Carmot.

The potential impact of anti-obesity medicines (AOMs) on conditions and indications goes way beyond overweight/obesity, too. Patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD), chronic kidney disease (CKD), heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), peripheral arterial disease (PAD), obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), osteoarthritis (OA), and even Alzheimer's disease (AD) will all benefit from weight loss. In our view, obesity is over a $100 billion opportunity and VK2735 has a shot on goal at being best-in-class.

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