If what you say is TRUE, "There is no comparison for the robustness of siRNA technology.", then why did Bristol-Myer-Squibb select ISIS (Antisense) for the $200 million PCSK9 deal, rather than ALNY?
I think you, as an investor, should be asking the ALNY management some serious QUESTIONS? Is ALNY's DELIVERY sound? What HAPPENS to efficacy with that delivery mode? What are the COST comparisons with Antisense? Does ALNY have a competitive advantage here? Why did ALNY lose out to ISIS? Is ALNY really, "Not Ready for Prime Time!"??
If you cannot answer those questions to some degree, and be satisfied, then perhaps you should be investing elsewhere. This is NOT investment advice - - just my honest opinion.
This BMY deal is so minuscule compared to the potential market for the cholesterol drug, and ALNY would certainly have refused a possible offer. For many people statin drugs don't lower the lipid levels. The market for lipid lowering drugs is absolutely huge ... several billion dollars.
ISIS is also pursuing siRNA path. They know too well how unreliable antisense technology is.
Have you not heard of apoB gene silencing in a primate study by ALNY scientists? It lowered cholesterol by more than half. ALNY has the technology to deliver siRNA to liver. This work is published in NATURE last year. They also have the technology to deliver to the tumor cells(Judy Lieberman's work, she is a ALNY scientific board member.).
Thirdme . . . your comments about ISIS being �unreliable� would have been correct 5 YEARS ago. But since then, ISIS greatly REVAMPED and IMPROVED its technology with its 2nd Generation Antisense and 2.2 platform - - greater drug POTENCY, and much, much longer half-life! NOW, nearly ALL of its 17-drug pipeline is 2nd Generation Antisense or 2.2. And yes, their basic research unit is pursuing siRNA - - via SINGLE-STRANDED - - to circumvent some of the problems that Alnylam is having with DOUBLE-STRANDED.
Yes, I know about apoB, but not from Alnylam�s PRIMATE studies, BUT from ISIS�s recently completed SERIES of highly successful PHASE II studies with ISIS-301012 - - it targets apoB! (see all the PR details on the ISIS web site). You may want to see my post on the ISIS board, �The ISIS-301012 target � apoB � is the KEY!�. In one of the trials with a high dose of 301012, the drug was able to lower apoB in patients to UNDETECTABLE levels! This drug, ISIS-301012, is going to be a BLOCKBUSTER, IMO, and will be partnered this Fall/Winter for PHASE III, and then on to the market! Stanley Crooke, CEO of ISIS, indicated that they have NEVER seen such a high level of interest from Big Pharma as they have with this new drug. In the whole cholesterol/cardio market space, ISIS now has 3 or 4 good targets and drugs: apoB, CRP, PCSK9, and some pre-pre-clinical work on ACAT2, with Dr. Larry Rudell from Wake Forest.
Thirdme . . . I know the cholesterol-lowering market is HUGE (about $32 Billion globally), and there is likely room for many players, but from my perspective, Alnylam seems to be really BEHIND when it comes to drug DEVELOPMENT. I know that Alnylam is a relatively young company (I think 7 years or so), and they publish great research, and their technology is supposedly stellar, but please pardon me when I ask, �Where�s the BEEF?� Clearly, Alnylam gets many more times the news coverage as ISIS, and has tons of press releases, and gets rave reviews from the stock analysts, but at some point in time, one has to question, �How many DRUGS has Alnylam produced or partnered in the various stages of research? (phase I thru to market). ISIS has 17 (now 18! - - with the BMY deal). I think you can count on one hand the Alnylam drug candidates, and many are just in pre-clinical or Phase I. This is what I mean when I say Alnylam is just �Not Ready for Prime Time!�
I guess at this stage, one just has to BELIEVE in Alnylam. But with the strong COMPETITIVE market forces, and Big Pharma needing new drugs SOON - - for Alnylam, it may be, �too little. . . too late! - - even if it has great technology.� That�s my take!