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Needham Keeps Buy on Rigel Pharmaceuticals

Needham reiterated the buy rating on Rigel Pharmaceuticals (RIGL).

Analyst Mark Monane says positive data results will enable Rigel to move on to late-stage testing and secure a collaborative partnership for its allergy treatment R112 in the near future. He says the data is clinically meaningful and supports his thesis that R112 is a "nonsteroid steroid."

Monane notes the rapid onset of action and effect on nasal congestion seen with R112 are two beneficial effects typically not seen with intranasal steroids. In anticipation of continued positive news flow in the third and fourth quarters, given Rigel's solid fundamentals, he believes the current valuation is very attractive.

Monane sees a $2.58 2004 loss and a $2.75 2005 loss. He has a $33 target.

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