CORAL GABLES, FL / ACCESSWIRE / November 20, 2018 / Once again the stock market is being jolted by volatility but there are still gleams of promise coming from a few sectors; healthcare being one of them. While the S&P 500 ETF (SPY) has seen a choppy last few months, other ETF's like the SPDR Healthcare ETF (XLV) have climbed. In fact, since April, the XLV is up by more than 15% compared to the SPY's roughly 5% during the same period. Heading into the holiday week, a number of healthcare names are taking hold of a bull market in healthcare stocks. Aside from big names like Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) or Merck (MRK) other companies are gaining new interest from investors and it could have a lot to do with the latest trends that the industry is seeing.
According to Optum's OptumIQ Annual Survey on AI in Health Care*, over the next five years, a healthcare organization will invest an average of $32.4 million on artificial intelligence. More than 500 senior U.S. healthcare industry executives - primarily from hospitals clinics and health systems, life sciences organizations, health plans and employers - participated in the inaugural survey measuring their attitudes and usage of AI technologies. As new technology trends take shape, here are 4 healthcare stocks to watch this week: Premier Health Group, Inc. (PHGRF) (PHGI), BioLineRx Ltd. (BLRX), Medigus Ltd. (NASDAQ:
Premier Health Group, Inc. (PHGRF) (PHGI) is focused on developing innovative health care approaches that combine humanskill based expertise with emerging technologies and will set the gold standard for services in locations of interest worldwide. In line with new healthcare industry trends, Premier Health's subsidiary, HealthVue is focused on developing proprietary technology to deliver quality healthcare through the combination of connected primary care clinics with telemedicine and artificial intelligence (AI). HealthVue currently has an ecosystem of over 100,000 active patients and have plans to rapidly increase that number both domestically and internationally.
Earlier this month, Premier solidified its stance on the increasing opportunity that the legal marijuana industry has presented. Last week Premier Health announced that as a part of its expansion plans, Premier Health will enter the Cannabis clinic space by a series of acquisitions, partnerships and/or launching a new Canada - based chain in the first half of 2019.
"Cannabis clinics fit in perfectly with our existing Telemedicine services and comprehensive app plans. The patient will not only be able to see their family doctor with our app, but also connect with their Cannabis clinic healthcare worker, the education nurse and eventually even the pharmacy or LP that is providing the prescription. This team-based and encompassing approach will provide the best and most convenient care for our patients," said Dr. Essam Hamza, Chief Executive Officer of Premier Health.
Shares of Premier Health reached highs of $0.64 on Monday; up 8.5% from the previous week's low.
BioLineRx Ltd. (BLRX) is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on oncology and immunology. Today BioLineRX announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted the Biological Product Designation for AGI-134, the Company's novel immunotherapy compound. This designation provides the Company with eligibility to obtain 12 years of market exclusivity upon approval of the product for commercial use by the FDA.
According to its release, BioLineRx says that this regulatory market exclusivity adds an incremental layer of protection in addition to that afforded by existing patents granted in the United States and Europe, and pending in other countries, covering the use of AGI-134 for the treatment of solid cancer tumors. These patents are valid until May 2035, with a possible term extension of up to five additional years.
"We are extremely pleased to receive the FDA's Biological Product Designation for AGI-134, our second lead oncology asset. This classification as a biological product is very significant since it provides us with additional valuable exclusivity and confirms the FDA's acceptance of AGI-134's main mechanism of action as a vaccine," said Philip Serlin, Chief Executive Officer of BioLineRx.
Shares were up as high as $0.75 during premarket trading on Tuesday.
Medigus Ltd. (MDGS) is a medical device company developing minimally invasive endosurgical tools and an innovator in direct visualization technology. Today Medigus announced that its board of directors has resolved on a reorganization of the Company, which will include the transfer of all of the Company's assets and intellectual property related to the Company's miniature video cameras into a fully owned subsidiary of the Company.
This technology transfer is intended to distinguish the Company's miniature video cameras business from the other operations of the Company and will enable the Company to form a separate business unit with dedicated resources focused on the promotion of this technology.
Medigus is the developer of the MUSE™ system, an FDA cleared and CE marked endoscopic device to perform Transoral Fundoplication (TF) for the treatment of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), one of the most common chronic conditions in the world.
Bioblast Pharma Ltd. (ORPN) is a clinical-stage biotechnology company committed to developing clinically meaningful therapies for patients with rare and ultra-rare genetic diseases. This week the company announced the execution of a definitive agreement to acquire Enlivex Therapeutics Ltd., a VC-funded privately-held immunotherapy company. Upon closing of the transaction, the combined company will change its name to Enlivex Therapeutics Ltd., and its trading ticker will be modified appropriately.
Enlivex is developing a novel immunotherapy with a unique mechanism of action that targets clinical indications that are defined as “life-threatening with an unmet medical need,” such as preventing or treating complications associated with bone-marrow transplantations and sepsis, (the third-leading cause of mortality in the U.S. after cardiovascular and cancer diseases) and as a treatment for solid tumors via immune checkpoint reprogramming, which could increase the efficacy of CAR-T, TCR and other anti-cancer therapies.
After releasing this news, shares of Bioblast traded higher on Tuesday morning. Highs as of premarket trading were up to $1.84 so far today.
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