5 Top Weekly NASDAQ Biotech Stocks: MEI Pharma on Top

- June 10th, 2018

MEI Pharma, Anavex Life Sciences, Trillium Therapeutics, Celldex Therapeutics and Ophthotech were last week’s top gainers on the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index.

Last week, the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (INDEXNASDAQ:NBI) increased by 0.46 percent to reach 3,462.22 points as of 2 p.m. EST on Friday (June 8).

Over the past trading week these companies saw good returns for investors and shed a light for potential investors of where the gains are being made, and why. This week’s weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks list has a variety of neurogenerative disease, and oncology focused companies among others.

Though some companies on the list didn’t have any major news over the trading period that would explain their share price increases, others had an array which may have influenced investors and the company’s share prices.

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With that in mind, the five top biotech stocks on the NASDAQ that increased the most last week were:

  • MEI Pharma (NASDAQ:MEIP)
  • Anavex Life Sciences (NASDAQ:AVXL)
  • Trillium Therapeutics (NASDAQ:TRIL)
  • Celldex Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CLDX)
  • Ophthotech (NASDAQ:OPHT)

All numbers are in US dollars and were taken as of 2 p.m. EST on Friday. Here’s a closer look at those companies.

MEI Pharma

Top on our weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks is MEI Pharma which had a 43.07 percent increase over the past trading week to $4.91.

Last week MEI presented at the annual American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) meeting clinical data from its Phase 1b trial for ME-401. The data had a 90 percent response rate across all patients with relapsed or refractory a variety of lymphomas and a rate of 86 percent of patients with relapsed or refractory follicular lymphoma.

Although the company hasn’t had any news over the last several weeks, it did share its Q1 2018 financial results in early May with a corporate update. Some highlights include a big increase in total assets including cash and cash equivalents from $8.98 million in Q4 2017 to $36.35 million in Q1 and total assets from $22.12 million to $78.97 million over the same period.

As an update Viking expects to initiate a proof-of-concept trial for VK2809 in GSD this quarter.

Anavex Life Sciences

While Anavex didn’t have any news over the past week, the company reported its Q2 2018 results May 10 with a clinical update. “We are looking forward, focusing on executing clinical trials using the inclusion of advanced genomic biomarkers into late-stage CNS precision medicine trials, including our Rett syndrome, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease dementia trials – all indications with high unmet need,” Christopher U. Missling, President and CEO of Anavex said in the press release.

This biopharmaceutical company is developing differentiated therapeutics to treat neurodegenerative and neurodevelopment diseases such as the ones Missling mentioned. Its lead product candidate is ANAVEX(R)2-73 which recently completed a Phase 2a clinical trial for Alzheimer’s disease.

Over the past trading week the Anavex’s stock price increased by 36.36 percent to $3.62.

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Trillium Therapeutics

In the middle on our top weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks list is Trillium Therapeutics, whose share price increased 15.59 percent last week to reach $6.70.

This clinical stage immuno-oncology company’s lead program is for TTI-621, which is designed to act as a soluble decoy receptor preventing the CD47 gene from delivery its inhibitory signal.

Last week the company released voting results from its annual and special shareholder meeting to appoint a new director and retire another. This, coupled with the news of appointing a new chief medical officer,  may have been what triggered the share price increase for Trillium.

Celldex Therapeutics

The company didn’t have any news over last week’s trading period although it did announce on June 1 it would present at Jefferies 2018 Global Healthcare Conference, which took place on Thursday (June ). This may have been what caused the company’s share price to spike investor attention by propelling a share price increase.

This immuno-oncology focused biopharmaceutical company applies its comprehensive precision targeted immunotherapy platform to develop new cancer and other diseases treatments with an unmet need. Celldex’s pipeline has a portfolio of monoclonal antibodies, antibody-targeted vaccines and immunomodulators for disease-specific drug candidates.

The company’s share price increased 12.91 percent last week to reach $0.64.

Ophthotech

Last on our weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks list is Ophthotech, which announced on June 7 it entered into an exclusive global license agreement with the University of Florida Research Foundation and the University of Pennsylvania.

The companies and institutions will develop and commercialize a novel adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy product to treat rhodopsin-mediated autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (RHO-adRP) to expand Ophthotech’s gene therapy portfolio, the company expects to begin the Phase 1 by early 2020.

Ophthotech is developing therapies to treat ophthalmic diseases, focusing on age-related and orphan retinal diseases.

This was likely the news which contributed to the company’s share price increase of 11.96  to reach $3.06.

Don’t forget to follow us at @INN_LifeScience for real-time updates!

Data for 5 Top NASDAQ Biotech Stocks articles is retrieved each Friday at 10:00 a.m. PST using The Globe and Mail’s market data filter. Only companies with a market capitalization greater than $50 million and lower than $500 million prior to the week’s gains are included. Companies within the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors are considered.

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

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**This article is updated weekly.  Please scroll to the top for the most recent information.**

5 Top Weekly NASDAQ Biotech Stocks: Viking Soars by 117 Percent

By Gabrielle Lakusta, June 3, 2018

Last week, the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (INDEXNASDAQ:NBI) increased by 2.10 percent to reach 3,449.17 points as of 1 p.m. EST on Friday (June 1).

Overall, companies on the index saw positive returns over the the trading period last week and the top gainers make up a well-rounded list of pharmaceutical and biotech stocks.

Some companies on the list didn’t have any major news over the trading period that would explain their share price increases, while others did.

With that in mind, the five top biotech stocks on the NASDAQ that increased the most last week were:

  • Viking Therapeutics (NASDAQ:VKTXW)
  • Curis (NASDAQ:CRIS)
  • Galectin Therapeutics (NASDAQ:GALT)
  • Sierra Oncology (NASDAQ:SRRA
  • Savara (NASDAQ:SVRA)

All numbers were taken as of 2 p.m. EST on Friday. Here’s a closer look at those companies.

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Viking Therapeutics

Top on our weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks is Viking, which is developing therapies for metabolic and endocrine disorders such as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and anemia, among other things. Viking has worldwide rights to five therapeutic programs based on small molecules license from Ligand Pharmaceuticals.

Although the company hasn’t had any news over the last several weeks, it did share its Q1 2018 financial results in early May with a corporate update. Some highlights include a big increase in total assets including cash and cash equivalents from US$8.98 million in Q4 2017 to $36.35 million in Q1 and total assets from $22.12 million to $78.97 million over the same period. As an update Viking expects to initiate a proof-of-concept trial for VK2809 in GSD this quarter.

Shares of Viking Therapeutics increased by an impressive 117.61 percent last week to reach to $10.33.

Curis

Curis released over last week’s trading period its drug candidate Fimepinostat (CUDC-907) developed for patients with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma received fast track designation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). More news includes Curis giving a pipeline update and showing recent gains,

This therapeutics company is working on developing and commercializing therapeutics to treat cancer, neurological and dermatological disease indications. The company’s lead drug candidate, CUDC-907,  is in clinical trials for lymphomas and solid tumors.

The company’s share price reached $2.46, representing a 26.97 percent increase last week.

Galectin Therapeutics

In the middle on our top weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks list is Galectin Therapeutics, whose share price increased 24.51 percent over the past trading week to $4.87.

The company is developing therapies for patients with chronic liver, skin diseases and cancer is Galectin’s main focus. Its lead drug is Galectin-3 protein involved in inflammatory, fibrotic and malignant diseases. The lead development program is in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) with cirrhosis, which is the most common liver disease—with a large development opportunity.

While Galectin may have not had any news over the past trading week to trigger an increase to its share price, on May 14 the company announced it would proceed to Phase 3 development of its candidate GR-MD-02 for NASH cirrhosis following a meeting with the FDA.

Sierra Oncology

Sierra Oncology is a clinical stage drug development company, advancing targeted therapies for treating cancer patients. The company didn’t have much news last week other than an announcement to present at an investor conference, however in early May the company did report its Q1 2018 results which highlighted a minor increase in R&D development expenses from $8 million in Q1 2017 to $8.3 million.

The company’s share price increased 21.12 percent over last week’s trading period to reach $2.70.

Savara

Last on our weekly NASDAQ biotech stocks list is Savara, which announced on Tuesday (May 29) an update on two case reports exploring the use of its candidate Molgradex for the treatment of nontuberculous mycobacteria in which a culture conversion has now been achieved in both patients along with meaningful clinical improvement in its OPTIMA study.

This news likely contributed to its share price increase, which rose by 18.36 percent to $9.80.

Savara is an orphan lung disease company with three candidates in it pipeline in various stages of development.

Don’t forget to follow us at @INN_LifeScience for real-time updates!

Data for 5 Top NASDAQ Biotech Stocks articles is retrieved each Friday at 10:00 a.m. PST using The Globe and Mail’s market data filter. Only companies with a market capitalization greater than $50 million and lower than $500 million prior to the week’s gains are included. Companies within the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors are considered.

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

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