Biotech

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Which biotech stocks on the CSE, TSXV and TSX performed the best in 2021? Here’s a look at the five top Canadian biotech stocks.

Click here to read the latest top Canadian biotech stocks article.

Although it’s not as large as the US biotech industry, the Canadian biotech market is still making a name for itself on the global investment stage in terms of size and opportunities.

In recent years, the biotech sector worldwide has become a “real industry” that has brought “spectacular” returns for mid-cap companies, according to Jessica Chutter, managing director and chairman of biotechnology investment banking with Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS).

Much of the growth in biotech is attributable to technology advancements in drug research and development, said Chutter, who was speaking at a virtual event hosted by the Globe and Mail.


Also speaking at the event, Brian Bloom, co-founder, chairman and CEO of Toronto-based investment firm Bloom Burton & Co., said Canada accounts for about 3 percent of the biotech sector’s global market cap.

Unsurprisingly, many top Canadian biotech stocks have performed well against that backdrop, and were able to continue that solid performance into 2021 — in fact, analysts expected the year to bring another period of stellar growth for the biotech industry, including in Canada.

Below the Investing News Network profiles the five top Canadian biotech stocks on the CSE, TSX and TSXV. Yearly performance and share price data was compiled on December 20, 2021, using TradingView’s stock screener. All top Canadian biotech stocks listed had market caps between C$10 million and C$500 million at that time.

1. Briacell Therapeutics

Current share price: C$10.70; year-to-date gain: 78.93 percent

First on this list of top Canadian biotech stocks is Briacell Therapeutics (TSXV:BCT,NASDAQ:BCTX), which is developing immunotherapies for treating cancer and infectious diseases. The company’s lead candidate, Bria-IMT, is an immunotherapy for the treatment of advanced breast cancer.

Briacell is currently enrolling advanced breast cancer patients in a Phase I/IIa combination study of Bria-IMT using Incyte’s (NASDAQ:INCY) checkpoint inhibitors, retifanlimab and epacadostat. Shares of the Canadian biotech stock hit a 2021 high point of C$15.75 on December 1.

2. Rapid Dose Therapeutics

Current share price: C$0.52; year-to-date gain: 65.08 percent

Rapid Dose Therapeutics (CSE:DOSE) is developing drug-delivery technology, and its flagship product is QuickStrip, a thin, orally dissolvable film that can be infused with active ingredients such as nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, vaccines and cannabis. According to the company, QuickStrip allows these ingredients to be delivered quickly into the bloodstream, resulting in rapid onset of the active ingredient.

Rapid Dose and McMaster University recently reported preliminary results from an investigation of an orally delivered vaccine candidate for COVID-19. The company has also received its Health Canada cannabis sales license. Shares reached a year-to-date high of C$0.66 on September 20.

3. PsyBio Therapeutics 

Current share price: C$0.24; year-to-date gain: 69.41 percent

PsyBio Therapeutics (TSXV:PSYB) is developing novel formulations of psychoactive medications produced by genetically modified bacteria for the treatment of mental health and other disorders.

In July, the Canadian biotech stock added to its intellectual property portfolio with the filing of a new patent application with the US Patent and Trademark Office for psilocybin and norbaeocystin compositions. PsyBio’s intellectual property portfolio now includes five pending provisional patent applications and one pending non-provisional patent application. It plans on filing an investigational new drug (IND) application around the end of 2021. Shares of PsyBio began trading on February 25 at C$0.90.

4. Alpha Cognition

Current share price: C$1.33; year-to-date gain: 86.27 percent

Clinical-stage biopharma company Alpha Cognition is developing novel treatments for underserved neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

In early September, the company announced that the US Food and Drug Administration had accepted the IND application for its lead candidate, ALPHA-1062, a proprietary, delayed-release oral tablet formulation designed to treat mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. The company plans to initiate a pivotal clinical study into the relative bioavailability of ALPHA-1062. If successful, Alpha Cognition will submit a new drug application in 2022. Shares reached a year-to-date high of C$2.49 on September 14.

5. ProMIS Neurosciences

Current share price: C$0.13; year-to-date gain: 30 percent

ProMIS Neurosciences (TSX:PMN) is a development-stage company focused on creating treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s, ALS and Parkinson’s disease.

In late May, the top Canadian biotech stock announced the initiation of producer cell line development for PMN310, a potential antibody therapy for Alzheimer’s. The manufacturing of the antibody therapeutics will be carried out by Selexis using the company’s proprietary SUREtechnology platform. The stock reached its year-to-date high for 2021 on June 8 at C$0.28.

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

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

Editorial Disclosure: Briacell Therapeutics is a client of the Investing News Network. This article is not paid-for content.

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