Gilead earnings beat Street estimates, writedown taken on cancer drug

April 28 (Reuters) - Gilead Sciences Inc (GILD.O) on Thursday said its first-quarter revenue rose 3%, helped by sales of HIV drug Biktarvy and COVID antiviral Veklury, but the company reported a net loss as it wrote down the value of its 2020 acquisition of Immunomedics following recent trial results for cancer drug Trodelvy.

The biotech company said adjusted earnings rose 4% from a year ago to $2.12 per share, topping the average analyst estimate of $1.81, as compiled by Refinitiv.

Revenue for the quarter rose to $6.6 billion from $6.4 billion, ahead of Wall Street estimates of $6.27 billion.

Net income, however, fell to $12 million from $1.72 billion as Gilead took a $2.7 billion research and development impairment charge related to the Immunomedics deal.

Gilead Chief Financial Officer Andrew Dickinson said on a conference call that the company had reassessed the value of those assets at $12 billion - down from its previous view of $14.7 billion.

The company in March said a large Trodelvy trial achieved its goal of delaying tumor growth in women with the most common form of breast cancer, but it has not disclosed specific data from the study.

Dickinson said the accounting change reflects the likelihood of a delayed launch for the drug for that use, as well as the possibility of reduced market share in other indications.

"We continue to see Gilead at a crossroads," BMO Capital Markets analyst Evan Seigerman said in a research note, adding that he was waiting for more data on the company's cancer drugs in development.

First-quarter sales of Trodelvy, which is approved for treating a rare type of breast cancer and bladder cancer, doubled from a year earlier to $146 million.

Gilead's HIV drug sales rose 2% to $3.7 billion, slightly ahead of Wall Street estimates.

Sales of the COVID-19 treatment remdesivir, which is sold under the brand name Veklury, rose 5% to $1.5 billion, exceeding analysts' estimates of $1.15 billion.

For full-year 2022, the California-based company said it still expects adjusted earnings per share of $6.20 to $6.70 on product sales of $23.8 billion to $24.3 billion.

Gilead shares were down about half a percentage point at $61.71 in after hours trading.

Reporting By Deena Beasley Editing by Bill Berkrot

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