Healthcare Business

Biotech News Day (February 4, 2008) (AMAG, AOB, AMGN, CELG, MNTA, OMRI, SVA, STEM)

Below are some of the top issues affecting biotech shares today:

  • AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAG), a biopharmaceutical company developing iron compounds to treat anemia, saw shares rise 4% to $56.00 after brokerage firm Robert W. Baird initiated coverage with an OUTPERFORM rating.
  • American Oriental Bioengineering Inc. (NYSE:AOB) shares are down almost 7% at mid-day with relative high volume trading to $9.50 on no real news.
  • Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN) stock shows no reaction to deal with Japanese drug giant Takeda Pharmaceutical. Takeda is to purchase Amgen’s Japanese unit for up to $902 million plus royalties on sales in exchange for access to 13 of Amgen’s new drugs. Amgen hopes this will curb costs and provide cash as their high-selling anemia drug sales slow due to safety issues. 
  • Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG) shares are down $1.76 to $57.94 at mid-day. Although earnings reported last Thursday met Wall Street expectations, the outlook for the success of its multiple myeloma cancer treatment, Revlimid, is mixed. Today, the company released Phase II data and news for its psoriasis drug CC-10004. The recent study showed positive results and the company announced plans to increase dosages. 
  • Momenta Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:MNTA) shares continued to take a beating after they announced their earnings release date this morning. They had a rough quarter after the FDA rejected their genetic blood-thinner in November, losing about 60% of its share price. Shares are down $0.37 to $7.54 at mid-day. 
  • Omrix Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:OMRI) shares are slightly recovering today after a sharp plummet over the last 2 weeks following the FDA approval for competitor ZymoGenetics’ (ZGEN) Recothrom, that will compete with Omrix’s Evithrom in the thrombin drug market. Omrix announced last Friday that their CFO is resigning. Shares are up 4% to $21.27 on relatively heavy trading volume at mid-day. A month ago, shares were trading at over $30. 
  • Sinovac Biotech Ltd. (AMEX:SVA), the Chinese vaccine provider, has shares up over 5% to $4.11 at mid-day after Sinovec announced the private placement of 2,500,000 common shares for $9.75 million to Sansar Capital Management. 
  • StemCells Inc. (NASDAQ:STEM) stock continued to rise after news last Thursday that it plans to collaborate with Casey Eye Institute to study their leading product candidate, HuCNS-SC, a probable treatment for retinal degeneration which is a leading cause of blindness. Shares are up over 15% at mid-day to $1.77.

Rachel Lopez
February 4, 2008