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RegMed sector, the rain is drizzling like the news flow
The 6 W’s: Who, what, where, when, why and what of it …
RegMed stocks were slow to open … as Verastem (VSTM), Dendreon (DNDN), Opexa (OPXA) are today’s big movers and even Cytori (CYTX) is up.
RegMed stocks have moved modestly higher in trading on Tuesday, adding to moderate gains posted in the previous session … although buying interest remains relatively subdued.
BioTime (BTX -$0.02) has developed a method to produce 7 distinct types of cartilage, bone, and tendon cells from human embryonic stem cells using the company’s PureStem technology. A lab study showed that BTX’s cells, which can be manufactured on an industrial scale, are “progenitors to diverse skeletal tissues of the human body.” BioTime expects to file a request for a PI trial in Q1/13.
Geron’s (GERN -$0.10) pipeline has shrunk to 2 candidates, from 6 in August, as a combination of poor clinical trial data and financial/strategic considerations warranted a new approach. In September, GERN announced that it was halting development of Imetelstat in solid tumors, and on December 3, they announced that it was halting the development of GRN1005 as well, leaving the company with only Imetelstat in hematologic malignancies. Geron reported new clinical data on Imetelstat in essential thrombocythemia at the American Hematological Society’s annual meeting in Atlanta last weekend … and after months of negative headlines, the company reported solid data.
GE Healthcare Life Sciences, a business unit of GE Healthcare (NYSE: GE) and Cellular Dynamics International (CDI), a commercial producer of human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell lines and tissue cells, announced that GE Healthcare has licensed CDI to develop, manufacture and sell cellular assays and models derived from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells for use in drug discovery and toxicity screening. The agreement follows the recent announcement that GE Healthcare has expanded its license with Geron to obtain exclusive global rights to GERN’s intellectual property and know-how for the development and sale of cellular assays derived from iPS cells. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Opexa Therapeutics ( OPXA) stock is UP about $0.52 or +37.04% on Tuesday after being DOWN -18.5% or -32% on Monday afternoon following recent news that the company’s board of directors approved a 1-for-4 ratio reverse stock split. Shareholders approved the reverse stock split in November, but it was the board of directors that determined the ratio, Opexa said 12/14.In August this year The Woodlands-based Opexa received notice from NASDAQ the company’s stock must be at least $1 per share before 2/4/13. The reverse stock split aimed to get the company above that threshold.
Who is also up – Aastrom (ASTM +$0.01), Athersys (ATHX +$0.02), BioLife solutions (OTC: BLFS +$0.002), Brainstorm (OTC: BCLI +$0.007), Cryo-Cell (OTC: CCEL +$0.12), Cytori (CYTX +$0.0), Dendreon (DNDN +$0.43), Harvard Bio (HBIO +$0.02), Neuralstem (NYSE MKT: CUR +$0.01), Opexa (OPXA +$0.40), Proteonomix (OTC: PROT +$0.03), ReNeuron (RENE.L +$0.12), StemCells (STEM +$0.02), ThermoGenesis (KOOL +$0.01), and Verastem (VSTM +$0.41).
Mid-Day: The NASDAQ is UP +41.51 (+1.38%) to 3,052.12 while the Dow is UP +118.21 (+0.89%) to 13,353.60.
Measuring the day – POSITIVE – 17 green (ups) leading 11 red (downs) and 5-6 fluctuating black (flats) … The CBOE Volatility Index traded below 16.
My Model Portfolio and Indicators:
- Aastrom (ASTM) is UP … +$0.01 or +0.62% to $1.41 in a few good days of positive trading and volume growth with a tighter mid-day range of $1.37 – $1.41 with a bit larger 79 K volume … compared to Monday’s closing range of $1.35 – $1.41 with larger volume of 186 K. From a number of calls – Dan Orlando, the interim CEO did a great job of presenting the company at the Oppenheimer conference. I have maintained a “BUY” in this market and at this pricing because of the late stage trial status.
- BioLife Solutions (OTC: BLFS) is UP … +0.96 at $0.262 … As, I continue to state … the joys of a rising stock price and the sorrow in profit taking by day trader and investors with a flat trading range of $0.26 – $0.26 … with only thin 1.9 K share volume compared to Monday’s closing range of $0.26 to $0.28 and larger 10.5 K share volume. I continue to reiterate this as a “BUY” on <these> downdraft … still sticking to BLFS being under-valued –with a $0.50 target! In a couple of calls … don’t worry those same traders will be back as they can NOT keep this equity down!!
- Cytori (CYTX) is UP … +$0.03 or +1.08% to $2.82 … after an offering at $2.85 for $18.5 M with a trading range of $2.78 – $2.84 and post offering volume of 146 K shares from Monday’s closing wide range of $2.78 – $2.88 with 552.1 M volume … I project… a “HOLD” … until the offering settles out but, as one fund manager stated it is still “dead money” with the “bad after taste” going to last for a while … now a … definite show me stock!
- Cytomedix (OTC: CMXI) is DOWN … -$0.03 or -4.01% to $0.719 on no news with a tighter trading range of $0.69 to $0.73 with low volume of 33 K shares from Monday’s closing range of $0.65 to $0.75 and larger 79.1 K share volume. CMXI is undervalued and ranked a “BUY” as most recently stated it was worth $1.25 … at a minimum.
- NeoStem (NYSE MKT: NBS) is UP… at $0.635 … with a tighter day’s range of $0.63 -$0.65 … with low 123 K volume so far from Monday’s closing range of $0.62 – $0.65 with moderate 466.8 K share volume. I believe NBS continue a “BUY” as I have been iterating for a while! But, day traders, retail and individual investors are slowing the year down!
- UCSF: California Stem Cell Agency Awards $12 Million in Grants to UCSF Physician Scientists – The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) has awarded $12 M in stem cell research grants to fund four projects at UCSF, part of a total $36 M in … http://www.ucsf.edu/news/2012/12/13327/california-stem-cell-agency-awards-12-million-grants-ucsf-physician-scientists
- The WRIGHT MEDICAL (WMGI) and BioMimetic (BMTI) merger/acquisition deal has been approved by the FTC;
- The Texas Department of State Health Services Nov.30 issued a final rule that adopts regulations under 25 TAC 1.451 to set forth criteria for establishing and operating autologous adult stem cell banks. The rule became effective Dec. 3. For more information, contact Marc Connelly, DSHS, at (512) 776-6972. http://bnaregs.bna.com/?id=tx_23178
- Advanced Cell Technology (OTC: ACTC) announced treatment of the fifth and sixth patients in the company’s European clinical trial for Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy (SMD) using retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), completing the second patient cohort. The patients were injected with 100,000 hESC-derived RPE cells, as compared to 50,000 cells in the first cohort. The outpatient transplantation surgeries were performed successfully and the patients are recovering uneventfully.
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