|Still attracted by potential of ACTC|
|By Vinny Cassano|
|Thursday, 19 August 2010 11:02|
Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (OTC BB: ACTC.OB) is still one of my personal favorite speculative stem cell plays.Although the company is still a long way from taking anything to market, this company is building a pipeline of patents and potential products that could pay off nicely down the road.
Among these potential pay-off products are the Myoblast program, a therapy intended to treat heart failure, and the RPE program, which uses retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells to treat diseases of the eye. ACT's Hemangioblast Cell Program is also in the early stages of development to treat cardiovascular disease, stroke, and cancer.
In another positive development, it was announced earlier this week that ACT could be poised to obtain significant patents relating to cellular reprogramming and the generation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. The iPS cells could become a huge asset to the company, if the patents are actually granted, because these cells are essentially embryonic stem cells, only they were 'reprogrammed' to that state from adult cells. This technology could alter the landscape of stem cell research because the controversy of using embryoes would become irrelevant.
However, it's apparent (at least to me it is) by reading the company's PR that there are other entities out there with similar technology, and I wouldn't be surprised to see a battle royale line up to control this, or similar technology.
I think it's that big.
If ACT does control these patents and the technology, then I think the stock becomes somewhat of a no-brainer at that point (in terms of risk/reward), but I'll believe the issuance of these patents when I see it. For now I'm just concentrating on adding shares for the potential of the existing lines of treatment that the company is working on.
Stem cell therapy is still a new and evolving medical phenomena and ACT is just as positioned as any to benefit from the development of this new and profound type of treatment. The partnerships may not be there (yet) and the potential may not be realized, but this is one of those stocks that could boom if the pipeline advances and the patents pay off.
However, it's worth weighing in the fact that the company will undoubtedly need to raise funds to advance the pipeline, unless a deep-pocketed partner were to materialize from the shadows. That means that dilution could be in store down the road, although the company recently announced that certain of its stem cell lines are eligible for federal funding. That offers the company at least one source of non-dilutive financing for the time being.
I'm still accumulating and I believe that ACTC is - at the very least - one to keep on the watch list.
Vinny also authors the popular stock investing blog, VFC's Stock House.
Disclosure: Long ACTC