What I think an from what I hear, I don't think that CLRB is particularly attractive. As to the tumor-diagnosis by PET: with the tracers available nowadays Tumor diagnosis via PET is excellent. do we need another tracer? Probably for a small niche it might be ok, but not as a big business. As to I-131 for therapeutic use: I-131 is a "dirty" agent (lousy half life, difficult to obtain etc), nothing like alga's alpghadrin, which made sense i metastatic PC 8and was bought by Bayer).
I must have a look again at MYGN. I got out from INCY between the high 50's and the mid seventies. Just for my psychological well being I bought bcd a really small position at ca 100. to be fair, I invested my INCY in other companies, some of which might have gone up in the meantime even more....
As to MDXG: I only listed the biotech's, i.e no MDXG, TECH, AXDX, MDT, VAR, MRIC, BDX, HOLX, STJ, aso...
ANAC!!! You are correct. I must have suppressed all memory on that one. Ayayay! Somewhen in the past I just was not sure anymore if the risk reward and the competitive position is as positive as I initially thought. Well guess what, I was wrong.
As to MRIC: I think the company could not have chosen a CEO with a better background/track record than him. His Q report comments are worth reading. He is straight forward, has a quick grape of the problems and is decisive. Unifying 2HQ's at one place, of course, makes sense. I recently bought some 8% more, just below 1 USD. Most likely MRIC's stock will continue to have a bumpy performance, but the overall trend over the next years will be up, and i hope in a big way.
Coming back to my "hard-core" US-biotech portfolio, it looks like this (according to the size of the position): CLDX much larger than FGEN=RCPT=NBIX=TSRO, which are a bit larger than MDVN=CCXI BLCM=SAGE=TGTX=ANTH, which are larger somewhat than KPTI=BLUE=TTPI=XLRN=TKAI, which again are followed FOLD=SRPT (todays winner)=CPRX=RDUS=INCY=RPRX... and then there are some even smaller holdings...regards
I was talking about the two main compounds, FGEN's pipeline is larger.
I myself do not believe that the selling is due to some leaking of bad news (Of course there is always the possibility of a bad news. p-ex., a competing compound, Akebia's HIF-inhibitor, has shown some nephrotxicity). Anyway, I have been buying on the way down, essentially more than doubling my original position.
-I was also talking about Karyopharm (KPTI) when it was at 28-30 (now 26-27). Two ASCO abstracts have not been well received, an overreaction IMHO. However, my position is rather small and I do not add to it.
-BLCM (ca 23 USD) did not move the needle yet. Patience, this is not a two day story.
-SAGE (ca 58USD) is performing as expected and i think it almost doubled side I mentioned it in January. Well, as I said before: great results so far, a short path to registration and the potential for label expansion... what more do you want?
-Tesaro (TSRO, ca 55 USD) and Neurocrine (NBIX, ca 43 USD) are slowly climbing, with occasional peaks and bumps. not much news flow at present, but increasing awareness of these names in the Street.
Two new names in my portfolio: TG therapeutics (TGTX, ca 16 USD, ca 750 mill MC) and Tokai (ca 12 USD, ca 270mill MC). One could view both as "late to the party" or "me too" stories. They are not. TGTX has TG1202, a "once daily", "clean side effect profile" PIK3Delta Inhibitor (aka GILD's Idelalisib) in ph2, which seems to combine well with Ibrutinib. And ublituximab, a glycoengineered anti CD20, which is to be at least a potent, or superior to Roches Gazyvaro. Third, TGTX has a preclinical checkpoint inhibitor portfolio worth a look. Top-Mangement is solid and experienced, the MC modest.
TKAI is the "me too" Xtandi company. But only at first glimpse. About 15-35% of CRPC (castration resistant prostate cancer) have a mutated Androgen receptor variant (ARV), such as AR-V7. These ARV are typically 80-100% resistant to Xtandi or Zytiga. However, since TKAI's Abiraterone (in ph2), unlike its two peers, also induces degradation of the AR, and results show that this drug might be effective in a large portion of those "resistant" cases. TKAI is a one trick pony, but with "ANTH-like" upside potential, and, I guess, with an even bigger chance of success than ANTH has... Anyway, I bought TKAI at ca 12 and TGTX at ca 15.
regards, Dr John
I was pleasantly surprised that the market acted absolutely decent upon TECHNE's last Q report (it was not a stellar report, to say the least).
I have been saying for over 1 year, that biotech looks topsy. Still, I buy new stocks, which I find attractive in this sector. I might better stick forever to the stocks I already own and, frankly, I make at least twice as may mistakes as good moves. The worst mistakes are usually those where I sell a good stock too early (for whatever stupid reason). Want a couple of namens? GILD, ISRG, IDXX, ILMN, PCYC; yes, even INCY, or ALXN fit into that scheme. Okay with the money I buy new names, which usually perform rather decently.
I do not shy away from buying back into a stock which I have previously sold, whenever I think that my previous sale had been ill advised. I have, lex, been buying back into MDVN (at ca 104) and I had sold some BLUE (got into BLUE at 25 or so) and bought back a larger position soon thereafter, at the same price (ca 120). Recently, I have been buying back into Receptos (RCPT) twice (bought at 25 sold at 46. Bought at 60 sold at 125. Bought at 145, this time my largest stake). And I have been adding again (in fact doubling) my stake in Chemocentryx (CCXI) at ca 7. Leafing through their AR (yes I still read PAPER!) I was impressed again by their pipeline, especially re: their oral C5a antagonist. NO WAY that their EV should be a mere 250 million USD!
I was talking highly of Fibrogen (FGEN) when it traded at 30. It went to 40, but now it hoveres at 18.5. What's the story? I dunno. for different reason, I think that there is one large seller and that there is not "fundamental problem" with the company/one it's two compounds. I think FGEN has an exceptionally interesting pipeline/future, (albeit a lot of things can go wrong until the medicaments hit the market.) A 1 Billion market cap for FGEN? I though it interesting at 1.7B, even more so now. I have been more than doubling my position...
...a) as always with biotech, bad news which we don't know is on the way. Can always happen. We can't control it. It hits hard, especially in a company with only two compounds in the pipeline.
Against this theory is the recent "passed safety bill" for the HIF-drug and -so far- rather bland SE profile. But one never knows.
...b) Insiders, such as the CEO do not seem to sell significant quantities (I would never, ever expect Neff to sell his position)
...c) lets switch to the seller: Usually a "large hedge fund" is the culprit. (If it is not the "short sellers" it is a "large hedge fund"). Now there is one LARGE hedge fund, ADAGE Capital partners, the largest institutional owner of FGEN. If you look at the March 31 file it seems as if Adage was already cutting back its various stakes in biotech stocks. But they had ONE BIG NEW POSITION, in fact their largest position after Apple: PUMA Biotech! As you know, Puma is THE big looser in this year's "ASCO-abstract-release-play". Therefore, one of the big guys at Adage might have been thinking: 1. Who the hell was buying us into this PUMA stuff? 2. What kind of mid stage Biotechs with only a short track records do we have left in our frig'n portfolio (one is FGEN). 3. Lets get rid of some of these stocks, I don't care about the price (and if we are at it, let's get rid of the guy who ran us into PBYI as well)....
or something like that... enjoy!
PS: I, for one, am buying on the way down. Is it a clever move? Let's see in two years (or when the fat lady sings).....
BTW, Pete was talking about ALQA during his CC. Mentioned that they have good management (which they have) but that their single layer PPP is less of a competitive threat to MDXG (or something along this line)....
PS: I own an ALQA bet which is about 1/40 of my MDXG holding...
Some execs sold between 0.3 and 2% of their holdings. Neff sold 9000 out of almost 4'000'000. A non event.
IMRIS' VISUS Surgical Theatre(VST) is no competition to MRIC's Clear Point System (CPS). While VST allows for intraoperative MRI monitoring, it does not provide real time MRI. To my knowledge there are some 40-50 VST placed worldwide. VST is expensive (1.5-12 Million USD) and consists of a MR transport system, head fixation devices etc. It is dependent upon Siemens MRI and principally allows the MRI to be transported over ceiling fixtures into the operating theatre, where, under strict aseptic conditions, MRI-examinations can be done, while the operation is stopped. This makes sense, since the patient does not have to be removed from the OP. However, this has nothing to do with the placement of electrodes under real time MRI guidance, such as CPS allows to do. CPS comes at a relatively modest price tag of 125000-150000USD (plus consumables).
IMRIS, however, has one product, the Symbils surgical System (SSS) in the pipeline, which MIGHT compete with CPS in the future. SSS is a surgical robot which should be MRI compatible. SSS might have been submitted to FDA clearance, but it is unclear when the rollout will begin. It is also unclear, if SSS will be compatible only within the VST or with Siemens MRI's which would limit their impact. Currently there is one Neuro-Robot on the market, the ROSA robot (by Medtech SAS, a French company), which is not MRI compatible. However, Neurorobots (at least so far) have been good for the placement of multiple electrodes and for the execution of more complex procedures, while their set up is not really worth while for the placement of just one or two electrodes/devices (which is the typical procedure, for which CPS is being used). All in all, there is the possibility that somewhen in the future, SSS might complete with CPS. Still, CPS is already on the market can be used with any MRI (GE, Siemens...) , has a broad installed base is relatively cheap and easy to install an should therefore have a very solid position... regards Dr J
Naah, it's just the biotech sector, which is red hot (some day, soon, this tide will turn).
Where I get my information from?: basic research into science and companies and some "instinct"...
The market looks topsy again, but I'll still throw in two companies to consider:
I bought Bellicum (BLCM, ca 23.8, market ca ca 600 mill USD) after the IPO (and doubled my position recently at about 24). I followed the company when it was still private. Back then, when DNDN was launching Provenge, I thought that BLCM had a superior technology. With their "switch" (a dimerizing agent in-licensed from Ariad) they claim to be able to "switch on" the activity p.ex. of their engineered DRZ (which will spearhead an attack on (prostate) cancer cells). Or they can "switch off" activity of their genetically engineered CAR-T cells, should side effects demand so. As you know, CAR-T cells are the flavor of the season (I owned and wrote about KITE in 2014). In a nutshell, CAR-T cells are genetically modified T cells which can recognize and attack certain (tumor) antigens/cells in a MHC-independent manner und thus elicit a much stronger immune response, especially in the second generation CAR-T cells, where the effector signal is coupled with certain costimulatory protein receptors such as CD28. BLCM has its own CAR-T program and I suggest you take a close look at the company.
Due to the the "new orals" such as ibrutinib or the PI3Kdelta inhibitors and due to the CAR-T hype (which, to some extent, is justified, because of stellar result in some blood cancers) ADC-companies, i.e. Seatlle Genetics (SGEN, ca at 38 USD) or Immunogen (IMGN, Ca 7.5 USD) have brome "pariah" stocks: Some Wall Streeters view them as soooo yesterday (let's call it the "Vertex-effect" in analogy to VRTX, which came out with its "state-of-the-art" Protease inhibitors, just to be rendered obsolete by the even better polymerase inhibitors from GILD). IMGN, looks undervalued at 7.5 with a EV of 550mill, one compound on the market and a deep -albeit early- pipeline. Look out for a jump, p.ex. if their Folate-Receptor-ADC compound shows promise in an early clinical studies... (I bought at ca 7.5)
While the biotech sector is ripe for a break I’ll still discuss two companies
Bellicum (BLCM, currently at 24 USD; mc ca 600mill) is a company I stumbled upon, when it was still private, at the time when Dendreon brought Provenge to the market. I thought, they had a suprerior product-in-waiting and was intrigued by their technology. BLCM claims that due to their “switch” (a dimerizing agent in licensed from Ariad) they can determine at what time the preprogrammed DRZ (acting against Prostate cancer cells) will “become active”. Vice versa, the same technology allows for « switching off » a genetically modified cell (such as as CAR-T cell), should this be needed ( p.ex. side effects). Of course, CAR-T is the big story out there, the flavor of the season, if you want. In a nutshell, CAR-T cells are genetically modified T-cells, which can directly recognize and attack cancer antigens in an MHC-independent manner, thereby eliciting a much stronger response, especially in second generation CAR-T cells, in which signaling is coupled with costimulatory protein receptors, such as CD28. CAR-T trials have produced stellar results in some types of blood cancer, reason for the euphory about this drug class. The usual suspects in this space are Novartis, Juno and Kite (the latest of which I owned in the past and wrote about it last year), and some others. BLCM has its own CAR-T program, and I suggest you to study the company. I for one bought soon after after the IPO at prices similar to now and doubled my position at current levels (ca 24). Might buy more, especially during has a weak biotech period…
Immunogen (IMGN) is one negelcted stock to consider : Everyone hates ADC-Technology (in the eyes of some Wall Streeters it looks soooo yesterday, compared to CAR-T, or to the new orals (ibrutinib, and the PI3Kdelta inhibitors, such as idelalisib). This is the reason why ADC-companies such as Seattle Genetics (SGEN, vcurrently ca 39), has been treading water for some time. You might remember that SGEN was my favourite Biotech in the past, but I sold it quite some time ago. And for the same reason Immunogen (IMGN, currently ca 7.8, MC 650mill, EV 500mill)) has such a low EV, despite having one product on the market (Kadcyla with Roche) and a rather deep pipeline. This negelcted (hated ?) stock will jump, if early phase study results of their ADC-Folate receptor ADC-compound are promising…
PS : remember the Dr John-contrary indicator : when I come out with too many « tips », it’s better to run for the doors, because the next leg down is imminent ☺
...we might be back in the game with ANTH (currently 4.2), but expect the volatility to continue: There has been a change in perception lately (from "near dead" to "full of promise"). This perception can change again in a blip (see today)...; at the end of the day ANTH remains a binary event company and therefore is very speculative....
BTW: I'd like to add again that Fibrogen (FGEN), currently at about 28.5 (market cap 1.6bill) looks very promising to me (at this price: I doubled my position today). Targeting large markets (anemia, fibrotic diseases), promising results so far, charismatic leader.
Karyopharm (KPTI, ca 30 USD, market cap about 1bill), which I mentioned in one of my last post, is another -possible- diamond in rough.
Finally, Neurocrine (NBIX at 41.5, market cap 3.2bill), Tersaro (TSRO, currently at 60, 2.15 mill USD market cap) and, of course Celldex (CLDX, at 30.5, 2.75 bill market cap) should continue to be good investments (unless the biotech sector explodes, which is always a possibility...)
I owned MYGN a couple of years ago (in fact I wrote a couple of times about MYGN and GHDX on this m.b, some 3-4y back, I guess). MYGN indeed IS an interesting company, but I sold the stock because I could not -and still can't- figure out how strong their IP is (patents)...