Active Stocks: Aratana Therapeutics, Protalix BioTherapeutics, Cellceutix Corp, Sharps Compliance, Alnylam
By David Fowler   
Monday, 13 October 2014 18:20

U.S. stocks slumped, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index falling below its 200-day average, as investors weighed prospects for Federal Reserve interest rate increases and slowing global economic growth.

 

The S&P 500 slipped 0.3 percent to 1,900 as of 2:51 p.m. in New York, dipping below its average from the past 200 days for the first time in two years. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.1 percent to 16,524.39, reversing an earlier drop of more than 80 points. The Nasdaq Composite Index was little changed, recovering from a 1.3 percent drop in the morning.

 Aratana Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:PETX) licenses a novel CRTH2 antagonist for animal health indications from U.K.-based Atopix Therapeutics Ltd. The product candidate, called OC459 by Atopix, will be developed by Aratana for atopic dermatitis in dogs.

Ebola-stoked traders are becoming manic. Seemingly any tiny stock with even a remote chance of an upside due to healthcare's activities to address the risk are now fair game. Shares of thinly-traded micro cap Protalix BioTherapeutics Inc. (NYSEMKT:PLX) jump on a 2x surge in volume albeit on turnover of less than 600K.

The IND for Cellceutix Corp (OTCMKTS:CTIX) Brilacidin-OM is now effective which clears the way for a Phase 2 trial in patients with oral mucositis.MD Anderson Cancer Center signs on as a clinical trial site. Oral mucositis is a cancer therapy side effect that afflicts ~500K head and neck cancer patients. There are currently no drugs approved in the U.S. for the indication.

In a familiar refrain, shares of thinly-traded nano cap Sharps Compliance (NASDAQ:SMED) are up 25% on high volume as Ebola-stoked traders bid up companies with infection control offerings.The company provides products for the safe disposal of medical waste, including used sharps (needles, syringes, lancets).

In a Phase 2 open-label extension study, Alnylam's (NASDAQ:ALNY) investigational RNAi therapeutic, patisiran (ALN-TTR02), demonstrated effectiveness as a treatment for patients with familial amyloidotic polyneuropathy (FAP) who have transthyretin (TTR)-mediated amyloidosis. The mean decrease in modified Neuropathy Impairment Score (mNIS+7) at six months in 19 patients was 0.95 points. The compares favorably with a historical 7 - 10 point increase in untreated patients.

 




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