Last week’s top NASDAQ biotech and pharma stocks were Harrow Health, Sesen Bio, Zynerba Pharmaceuticals, Athersys and Catalyst Pharmaceuticals.

After a tumultuous five day period the previous week, the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (INDEXNASDAQ:NBI) was back in the green last week, rising from 3,230.51 points on Monday (May 13) to 3,278.31 points as of 1:47 p.m. EDT on Friday (May 17). 

A number of biotech and pharma stocks were also on the rise last week, notably Harrow Health (NASDAQ:HROW), which surged roughly 30 percent over the trading period.

The five top-gaining small- and mid-cap NASDAQ biotech and pharma stocks last week were:

  • Harrow Health
  • Sesen Bio (NASDAQ:SESN)
  • Zynerba Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ZYNE)
  • Athersys (NASDAQ:ATHX)
  • Catalyst Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:CPRX)

Here’s a closer look at those companies and what moved their share prices over the week.

Harrow Health

Harrow Health has a portfolio of healthcare companies under its umbrella, including ophthalmic pharmaceutical company ImprimisRx, Eton Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ETON), Surface Pharmaceuticals, Melt Pharmaceuticals and Radley Pharmaceuticals.

Shares of Harrow Health were up 29.54 percent last week to US$6.58 as of 2:48 p.m. EDT on Friday, although the company didn’t have any news during the period.

Sesen Bio

Sesen Bio’s area of focus is treating people with cancer. The company’s lead product, VB4-845, is in a Phase 2 registration trial to treat bladder cancer. Data from the 12 month trial is expected in mid-2019.

The company announced its Q1 2019 results on Monday, highlighting analysis of its preliminary Phase 3 trial and Phase 2 clinical trial data. Sesen Bio says this will be the backbone of its pending meetings with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Sesen Bio’s shares rose 23.28 percent last week to hit US$1.45 as of 2:54 p.m. EDT on Friday.

Zynerba Pharmaceuticals

Zynerba Pharmaceuticals’ focus is on rare and almost rare neuropsychiatric disorders, such as Fragile X syndrome, autism spectrum disorder, 22q11.2 deletion syndrome and a variety of epileptic disorders.

Like others on the list, Zynerba Pharmaceuticals did not have any news last week that would explain its share price increase. Nevertheless, it saw a share price hike of 22.57 percent to US$15.54 as of 2:58 p.m. EDT on Friday.


Athersys is a clinical-stage company working on therapies with a primary focus on regenerative medicines. Its MultiStem stem cell product is geared towards neurological, inflammatory, immune and cardiovascular diseases, among others.

The company noted on Tuesday (May 14) that it has received fast-track designation from the FDA for MultiStem for acute respiratory distress syndrome. As a result, shares of Athersys were up 21.21 percent last week to US$1.99 as of 3:03 p.m. EDT on Friday.

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals is a company focused on rare chronic neuromuscular and neurological diseases, such as Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome, congenital myasthenic syndrome, MuSK antibody positive myasthenia gravis and spinal muscular atrophy Type 3.

The company released its Q1 2019 financial results on Tuesday, noting that its net revenue for the quarter was US$12.4 million. Shares of Catalyst Pharmaceuticals were up 19.43 percent last week to US$3.76 as of 3:10 p.m. EDT on Friday.

Data for the 5 Top NASDAQ Biotech Stocks articles is retrieved each Friday at 1:00 p.m. EDT using TradingView’stock screener. Only companies with a market capitalization greater than $10 million and lower than $500 million prior to the week’s gains are included. Companies within the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors are considered.

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Securities Disclosure: I, Jocelyn Aspa, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.


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