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Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Message Board

  • nucleotidestring nucleotidestring Jul 2, 1999 5:46 PM Flag

    The Great News Keeps Coming

    I spoke recently with ISIS� management, and
    learned of a number of very positive

    One of the largest financial institutions in the
    world has just agreed to provide ISIS with an equity
    line of credit involving many tens of millions of
    dollars. The terms call for a straight equity investment
    with options, warrants, interest accruals and the
    shorting of shares playing no role what-so-ever in the
    transaction. This investor, justifiably, has so much
    confidence in ISIS, that they have virtually guaranteed the
    Company that it will be in a position to maintain
    substantial capital reserves until profitability is attained
    (2001 or 2002). They will buy, at market rates, as many
    or as few shares as ISIS chooses to sell at any
    given time. When the fireworks begin with ISIS 2302 and
    the share price advances, the Company will have the
    option of bringing to market, a standard, secondary
    offering, or continuing its relationship with this
    investor. As compared to the current financial condition of
    most small biotechs, ISIS now finds itself in a very
    enviable position.

    In discussions with some of the
    senior people at ISIS who are involved with the
    development of ISIS 3521 (targeted against PKC-Alpha), the
    word is that the open label phase II trials �are going
    to shock everyone with their efficacy.� In addition,
    ongoing trials continue to demonstrate a high degree of
    safety with minimal side effects. There are very few
    drugs employed in the treatment of cancer for which
    claims of safety, efficacy, and non-toxicity can
    legitimately be made. ISIS 3521 apparently is one. There is a
    great deal of excitement at the Company with respect to
    this, their first anti-cancer agent. Results of the
    trials will be presented at a cancer conference in
    November. Data for the other two anti-cancer compounds are
    not yet available.

    Big pharma continues to
    pursue ISIS for a variety of partnerships. The Company
    expects to close on at least three joint ventures this
    year. It is anticipated that all three of their areas
    of expertise, antisense, target validation and IBIS
    will be employed in these programs.

    continues to make progress in every area. The only possible
    glitch the Company faces is the fact that theG/I
    division of the FDA has taken a great deal of heat for
    approving Remicade, and then discovering that this drug had
    many more side effects than it had been aware of. As a
    result, it is possible that they may scrutinize ISIS 2302
    much more carefully than would otherwise have been the
    case. Fortunately, this compound, and in fact, all
    oligonucleotides, that have been tested in human clinical trials,
    have demonstrated extraordinary safety and a
    negligible side effect profile. Regardless of how cautious
    the FDA is in reviewing ISIS� NDA, ISIS 2302 will be
    approved in the treatment of Crohn�s disease. It is, quite
    simply, the best therapeutic available for the treatment
    of this disorder, and no one gains by depriving
    Crohn�s patients of its benefits.

    I only mention
    this issue because there are so many positive
    developments emanating from ISIS, that to discuss only them,
    would make me appear as a pollyanna.


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    • I need to understand antisense and ISIS. If you
      took part in the development of the treatment
      technology, then CONGRATULATIONS to you! And, if you can help
      some of us to better understand antisense and ISIS,
      then please continue to post.

    • Please keep posting as long as you believe you
      have some information, knowledge, or informed opinion
      to convey. I do not look at these boards as simply a
      confidence-building forum for people already owning the stock. The
      board should also be used for persons considering the
      stock, and who want to share info and opinion so as to
      determine whether to join the ranks of investors. I wish
      only the best for all longs, but I for one have been
      following ISIS somewhat peripherally for 2 or more years
      without buying. I am thirsty for more information and
      informed opinion so I can figure out whether and when to

    • I just wish I had clairvoyance - just this once.
      I can't imagine biotech not being huge in the next
      2 to 10 years. Targeting disease processes at a
      molecular level or, as ISIS is trying to do, right in the
      anti-sense DNA strand, will ultimately be to earlier forms
      of medicine what satellite communication is to tin
      cans with strings. (I think). But, where to put our
      investment dollar? Do we look for a company with a treatment
      for a major market disease in Phase III, but which
      may not have a platform from which to launch multiple
      treatments? Or, do we go with an ISIS, with but one treatment
      in Phase III for a medium market didease, but with a
      (supposed, presumed, hoped for)platform from which to
      launch? (and hope that their platform is the real deal)
      Please, someone with either clairvoyance or an
      exceptionally brilliant mind, tell us where to invest for a
      fifty bagger.

    • I infrequently post messages to this Board, but I
      read with great care the various facts, "analyses",
      and commentary posted. I am intrigued by the recent
      posts of binvestory99 and cyclix.

      As I recall,
      cyclix has previously identified himself as a former
      Isis employee who led the fomivirsen product
      development. It seems to me that he would have first-hand
      knowledge of how much his company spent to develop this
      drug whereas binvestory99 can only make "educated"
      guesses. As a former employee, I understand that cyclix
      might not be able to be more explicit in his
      explanations, but his suggestions to examine past financial
      statements from the company do raise significant questions
      about the credibility of using "industry averages" as
      binvestory99 posted to draw conclusions about the R&D

      It is also interesting to me that binvestory99
      believes that Isis continued development of fomivirsen in
      the face of a vanishing market for its intended
      indication. Cyclix asked a good question about what
      management should have done about "calling it quits" on this
      program and the message that action might send to the
      market. Binvestory99 did not answer except to reveal that
      he sold his shares in Isis when the stock price was
      at $18 per share. Examine the history of the stock
      price, there are only a few times when this sale could
      have occurred, and none of these times supports the
      contention that he timed the sale "just right" relative to
      information about a declining market potential for CMV
      retinitis treatments. Maybe binvestory99's
      "retrospectroscope" was focused on the target of gastrointerologists
      rather than ophthalmologists.

      So who has the most
      credibility on this subject. I would hazard a guess that the
      one who was in charge of the budget for Isis might
      have more accurate insight than an "analysis" by an
      outsider who used industry averages to make a point that
      sounds so wise. Seems to me that binvestory99's
      commentary smacks of one trying to write the history as
      imagined to further support what looks like a good
      decision today to cash in at $18/share. Time will tell how
      great this decision really was.

    • is the mark of a post. I don't always agree and I
      don't usually respond. But word for windows does the
      spelling and grammar checking. Are you going to do it to.
      Lighten up, let the people speak. Punctuation and
      spelling are for anal retentives.

    • Take your personal attacks and your innuendo
      elsewhere. I chose to disclose my lack of financial position
      in this company simply to show that I have no hidden
      agenda. I don't need to defend my part in the development
      of the technology that produced a new drug that has
      saved the eye sight of many who have received

      There are always those - like you - who wish to twist
      the truth or interpret remarks to benefit your
      position. My lack of a financial stack in Isis says nothing
      about my belief in the company or its

      For those readers of this Board who enjoy reading
      these editorials without rebuttal, I hope that you find
      their informative remarks to be just what you need to
      understand antisense and Isis. Good luck to all.

    • Sadly, if the only thing you can attack from my
      post is my spelling and grammar (unfortunately, a
      spelling checker wasn't available), I guess I otherwise
      have an accurate and disturbing assessment of Isis'
      situation. Perhaps you ought to quit your day job and become
      an English teacher (certainly that appears to be the
      only constructive advice you can offer).

      I love
      Isis' technology, and the people in the company. I just
      wish them to succeed, but to do so now requires some
      painful choices that management appears unwilling to
      embrace (or perhaps because of Crooke's mountain-sized
      ego). I actually don't own any Isis stock anymore, nor
      am I shorting it. I sold my remaining interests
      several years ago at $18 a share, which now looks like a
      pretty good move.

      Why is it that when someone
      posts some negative thoughts or challenges the
      Pollyannas that one gets attacked so violently? I would
      think an open dialog would be beneficial.

      I can
      certainly understand Cyclix's position. He was part of the
      suspect decision making process that lead to the inane
      pursuit of 2922 (and I noticed he said he has no
      financial position in the company -- that conveys the true
      confidence he has in them). Rebuilding a reputation is a
      difficult task.

      A $100 million dollars is a lot of
      money for a "proof of concept" that has sure done
      wonders for the stock price. Is Isis that insecure in
      their technology that they had to spend that kind of
      money to "prove" their technology? My gosh, ruining the
      company to demonstrate a point seems awfully foolish to

      My only hope is that somebody in management will
      read my posts, and hopefully glean a few morsels of
      wisdom from them. I am not here to harm the company,
      only offer it some constructive advice.

    • It's not you at all. It just shows how gullible
      we are at times especially when we hear things that
      sound plausible and logical.
      I heard the same thing
      from an insider who is connected with a major company
      who would market the product. So either the deal is
      taking much longer, or it fell through, or maybe
      internal timing.....who knows? Anyway, look at MSFT
      Strange thing is that I could've gotten my money back
      several times when the price increased but I thought that
      the company was on it's way. And here we sit! Just
      proves that the market is the biggest casino in the
      world. Good luck!

    • I recall reading an article 2 or 3 years ago in
      WORTH magazine in which it was predicted that Isis
      Pharm., with their anti-sense therapy, would be the next
      microsoft in terms of market performance. Does it seem to
      you that they are falling short, so far? (Or, is it
      just me?)

    • looking at your ignorance of grammar, spelling, punctuation and word usage (humored?) does not inspire confidence in your ability to reason.

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