Jim Birchenough, Managing Director at BMO Capital Markets Corp. and Senior Biotechnology Analyst: Top 10 Investment Interviews for Biotech and Pharma in 2012

Wall Street Transcript

67 WALL STREET, New York - November 27, 2012 - The Wall Street Transcript has just published its Best Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Investing Interviews of 2012 Report offering a timely review of the sector to serious investors and industry executives. This special feature contains expert industry commentary through in-depth interviews with public company CEOs, Equity Analysts and Money Managers. The full issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.

Topics covered: Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Investing

Companies include: Celgene Corporation (CELG), Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD), Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. (REGN), Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ONXX), United Therapeutics Corp. (UTHR), Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ARIA), Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. (SNTA), Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (RIGL), Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ISIS)

In the following excerpt from the Best Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Investing Interviews of 2012, an expert analyst discusses the outlook for the sector for investors:

TWST: What are some of the most exciting new drugs or technologies coming out of your companies investors would want to be aware of?

Dr. Birchenough: I think the biggest things thematically that we're seeing from a technology perspective is continued focus on molecular diagnostics guiding molecular therapeutics in oncology, in particular. And so what we're starting to see is companies succeeding at identifying key drivers of cancer-cell growth, identifying with diagnostics what those drivers are, and targeting those patients specifically with highly effective drugs. This is an area that we think we're going to continue to see growth in and where most of the oncology studies that are starting right now are being done with molecular diagnostics and better-characterized patients and more targeted drugs targeted at these oncogenic drivers of disease.

TWST: What are some of the industry-specific metrics you use to evaluate biotech and pharma companies investors in the space should also be sure to understand and analyze?

Dr. Birchenough: I think when you look at the U.S. biotech group and you're trying to figure out where to invest, I think you want to look at the maturity of the company - whether they're preclinical, whether they're development stage, Phase I through Phase III, whether they're commercial safe. I think you want to look at how well they understand their drugs, how well characterized the drugs are in earlier-stage development because, historically, companies have not spent enough time characterizing the drugs well enough and have ended up running into toxicity problems later in development.

So I think you want to look at companies and how well they characterize the drugs in early development. You look at whether these are small molecule pharmaceuticals or if they are large molecule biologics, and large molecule biologics tend to have longer patent life and are more resistant to generic erosion, so there's a preference there for the larger biologic molecules.

And I think overall the biggest thing is when you look at U.S. biotech or any therapeutic company...

For more of this interview and many others visit the Wall Street Transcript - a unique service for investors and industry researchers - providing fresh commentary and insight through verbatim interviews with CEOs, portfolio managers and research analysts. This special issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.

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