Healthcare Business

The Top 5 Biotech Stocks of 2015 -- Average Gains So Far Over 200%

Recro Pharma (Gain of 202%)

Up 202% so far in 2015, Recro Pharma has $66.7 million market cap. This biotech really kicked into gear in early March, when shares were around $3. The most recent driving force in the stock’s movement was that it is buying assets from Alkermes, including worldwide rights to IV/IM meloxicam, a proprietary, Phase 3-ready, long-acting COX-2 NSAID for moderate to severe acute pain. The deal included a contract manufacturing facility, royalty and formulation business in Gainesville, Ga.

Recro Pharma shares traded around $8.64, in a 52-week trading range of $2.36 to $8.90. The consensus analyst price target is $25.33.

Esperion Therapeutics (Gain of 178%)

Esperion Therapeutics has risen almost 178% so far in 2015, and it has a $2.3 billion market cap. The positive top-line results released in mid-March on ETC-1002-009 caused shares to jump almost 30% in just one trading session. The candidate is in Phase 2b clinical trials to treat patients with hypercholesterolemia, as well as to lower levels of LDL-cholesterol and avoid various side effects associated with LDL-cholesterol lowering therapies.

Esperion shares recently traded at $112.33. The consensus price target is $107.17, and the 52-week trading range is $12.75 to $118.95.

Anthera Pharmaceuticals (Gain of 175%)

Although Anthera Pharmaceuticals is up 175% so far in 2015, it was even higher earlier this month. Its market cap is $113 million. Anthera’s largest gain was from February, after it announced its interim analysis from a Phase 3 study of Blisibimod for systemic lupus. The study passed its futility analysis and will continue to completion with an enhanced endpoint, and the company said that enrollment would be completed in 2015 with final data in the third quarter of 2016.

Be advised that Anthera recently raised about $25 million in a secondary offering, and that Jefferies lowered its price target to $12.

Shares of Anthera traded at $4.34, in a 52-week trading range of $1.46 to $6.37. The consensus price target is $5.25.

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A chart montage of all five biotech gainers from StockCharts has been included below, along with a relative chart of the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF.