(Reuters) - Questcor Pharmaceuticals Inc reported strong second-quarter sales of its flagship multiple sclerosis drug, sending its shares up as much as 17 percent to a life-high.
The biopharmaceutical company shipped 4,710 vials of Acthar for the April-June period, a 15 percent rise from the first quarter.
ThinkEquity analyst James Molloy said the total numbers were above his estimates of 4,307 vials.
"Questcor continues to show sustained strong growth in both nephrotic syndrome and multiple sclerosis, with the impact of the doubling of the nephrotic syndrome sales force starting to drive the NS prescriptions," Molloy said.
Of the 19 different indications for which the injectable drug is approved, most of the company's sales come from treatment of multiple sclerosis and nephrotic syndrome -- a renal disorder characterized by heavy urinary protein losses.
Jefferies and Co analyst Biren Amin, who raised his price target on Questcor's shares to $60 from $56, expects the company to report second-quarter revenue of $111 million, based on the sales data for Acthar.
Analysts on average were expecting revenue of $103.8 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Amin reiterated his "buy" rating on the stock.
The Anaheim Hills, California-based company's shares were up 11 percent at $55.92 in early afternoon trading on the Nasdaq. They touched a high of $58.91 earlier.
(Reporting by Shailesh Kuber in Bangalore; Editing by Don Sebastian, Maju Samuel)