January 17, 2020 7:52pm
News: The continuing saga over who owns the valuable patents that cover CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing took a new turn this week with a court decision that goes against the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and two local startups – Editas Medicine (EDIT -$1.38) and Beam Therapeutics (private) while Intellia Therapeutics (NTLA -$0.53) and CRISPR Therapeutics (CRSP -$1.30) fell alongside
The week in review
Welcome to my world of defining the “grey’ in our universe!
The Dow closed UP +50.46 points (+0.17%), the S&P closed UP +12.81 points (+0.39%) and the NASDAQ closed UP +31.81 points (+0.34%)
Indexes rose slightly on Friday as markets wrapped up a solid weekly performance that featured record levels amid strong global economic data and a start to earnings season.
Friday’s gains came after Chinese industrial data for December topped expectations overnight, with production rising 6.9% on a year-over-year basis. The overall Chinese economy grew by 6.1% in 2019, matching expectations. To be sure, that is also the slowest growth rate for the Chinese economy since 1990 <CNBC>.
From my morning “Data Docket”, housing starts soared nearly 17% in December and reached a 13-year high. That data follows Thursday’s release of better-than-forecast weekly jobless claims and strong business activity numbers from the Philadelphia Fed.
The S&P 500 is up +3.1% and Dow are up +2.8% year to date while the NASDAQ is up +4.5% higher in 2020.
News (continued); The Broad Institute, MIT scientist Feng Zhang and others have been engaged in a four-year-long dispute with the University of California, Berkeley, scientist Emmanuelle Charpentier and others over the scientific tool, which can be used to cut out and replace disease-causing genes. The two sides have battled in U.S. and abroad over dozens of patents related to the gene editing technology, which is worth billions of dollars.
Scientists and startups have split into two sides, with the local startups CRISPR Therapeutics (CRSP) and Intellia Therapeutics (NTLA) forming a patent alliance with UC, Berkeley,
Meanwhile, Editas Medicine (EDIT) and privately held Beam Therapeutics are licensing CRISPR technology through the Broad. Zhang has also helped found multiple other startups using CRISPR.
Here in the U.S., the Broad has been able to retain its U.S. patents thus far, but earlier this year the European patent office revoked one of its CRISPR patents. This week, the Munich-based body rejected its request to overturn that earlier decision.
The Broad Institute and the University of California are fighting over more than two dozen patents.
The U.S. case is ongoing. In September 2019, with the University of California filed new documents alleging that the Broad withheld information in an attempt to deceive U.S. patent officials — assertions the Broad said are “baseless” and false.
MilliporeSigma entered the fray last year when it filed documents with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office challenging the University of California's patents. The company also teamed up with the Broad to share their respective CRISPR intellectual property with researchers and life sciences companies, but said it is open to a sharing agreement with Berkeley as well. <BBJ, Allison DeAngelis>
The sector is drifting, get ready the life rafts to collect the dropping and discardrd share pricings or is a butying oppurtunity upon us - this is not the gong show but, prepare the "risk" hooks!
The iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology (IBB) and the SPDR S&P ETF (XBI) indicators:
- Friday the IBB closed down -0.46% and XBI closed down -0.81%
- Thursday the IBB closed up +0.62% and XBI closed up +0.73%
- Wednesday the IBB closed up +0.62% while and XBI closed up +0.73%
- Tuesday the IBB closed up +1.95% while and XBI closed up +2.73%
- Monday the IBB closed down -1.209% while and XBI closed down -1.91%
The advance/decline line scenario of 35 covered companies:
- Friday the close was negative with an A/D line of 14/20, 1 flat of 35 covered,
- Thursday the close was positive with an A/D line of 18/15, 2 flats of 35 covered,
- Wednesday the close was positive with an A/D line of 20/14, 1 flat of 35 covered,
- Tuesday the close was positive with an A/D line of 28/7, 1 flat of 35 covered,
- Monday the close was negative with an A/D line of 10/24, 1 flat of 35 covered,
- Global Blood Therapeutics (GBT -$3.44 after Thursday’s +$1.52, Wednesday’s +$1.65, Tuesday’s +$3.08 and Monday’s-$2.17);
- Editas Medicine (EDIT +$1.38 after Thursday’s -$0.76 and Wednesday’s +$0.35);
- Ionis Pharmaceuticals (IONS -$1.33 after Thursday’s -$0.60 and Wednesday’s -$1.22);
- CRSPER Therapeutics (CRSP -1.30);
- Ultragenyx (RARE -$0.92)
- Mesoblast (MESO +$1.14);
- Bellicum Pharmaceuticals (BLCM -+$0.19);
- ReNeuron (RENE.L +$9.50);
- MiMedx (MDXG +$0.40);
- Fate Therapeutics (FATE +$1.35);
The percentage (%) indicators:
- Friday’s range of the 14 upside was +0.17% (ADVM) to +13.72% (MESO) while the 20 downside ranged from -0.44% (ALNY) to -11.85% (BSTG);
- Thursday’s range of the 18 upside was +0.12% (CRSP) to +25.52% (BLCM) while the 15 downside ranged from -0.48% (MESO) to -8.68% (XON);
- Wednesday’s range of the 20 upside was +0.23% (BCLI) to +4.92% (VSTM) while the 14 downside ranged from -0.19% (QURE) to -5.56% (XON);
- Tuesday’s range of the 28 upside was +0.02% (IONS) to +17.45% (BLCM) while the 7 downside ranged from -0.50% (MESO) to -33.30% (STML);
- Monday’s range of the 10 upside was +0.50% (BOLD) to +6.60% (RARE) while the 25 downside ranged from -078% (SGMO) to -11.07% (AXGN);
Upside volume stats: to compare
- Friday: 10 out of the 14 upside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Thursday: 5 out of the 18 upside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Wednesday: 6 out of the 20 upside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Tuesday: 19 out of the 28 upside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Monday: 6 out of the 10 upside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
Downside volume stats:
- Friday: 13 out of the 20 downside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Thursday: 9 out of the 15 downside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Wednesday: 4 out of the 14 downside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Tuesday: 4 out of the 7 downside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
- Monday: 11 out of the 25 downside had higher than the 3 month average volume;
1 flat – STML
January’s sessions of 35 covered companies:
Friday closed NEGATIVE with 20 decliners, 14 advancers and 1 flat;
Thursday closed POSITIVE with 15 decliners, 18 advancers and 2 flat3;
Wednesday closed POSITIVE with 14 decliners, 20 advancers and 1 flat;
Tuesday closed POSITIVE with 7 decliners, 28 advancers and 1 flat;
Friday closed NEGATIVE with 18 decliners, 16 advancers and 1 flat
Thursday closed POSITIVE with 12 decliners, 22 advancers and 1 flat;
Wednesday closed POSITIVE with 10 decliners, 23 advancers and 2 flats;
Tuesday closed POSITIVE with 15 decliners, 22 advancers and 0 flat;
Monday closed POSITIVE with 13 decliners, 22 advancers and 0 flat;
Friday closed NEGATIVE with 19 decliners, 15 advancers and 1 flat;
Thursday closed NEGATIVE with 18 decliners, 15 advancers and 2 flats;
Wednesday markets were closed;
Opinions expressed are those of the author and are subject to change, and not intended to be a forecast of future events, a guarantee of future results, nor investment advice.
Whether information or intelligence is good, bad or somewhere in between; I put into context what is relevant and useful for investors. All investments are subject to risks. Investors should consider investment objectives.
Henry McCusker, the editor and publisher of RegMed Investors does not hold or have positions in securities referred to in this publication.