Biotech Bounce “Ignyted” By Roche Deal

  • Biotech Bounce Ignited By Roche (RHHBY) Buy of Ignyta (RXDX)
  • Nasdaq Flat at 6953
  • Healthcare sector weak down 0.43%. as of 1 PM  EST Trading

Biotech stocks escaped the doldrums today ignited by Roche (RHHBYacquisition of Ignyta, Inc. (RXDX) for $1.7B in an all-cash transaction. The stock soared 71%. Ignyta is focused on precision medicine in oncology with lead molecule entrectinib a tyrosine kinase inhibitor targeting tumors with ROS1 or NTRK fusions. We covered Ignyta in April 2015 after a restructuring. Approval of the drug is expected in H1 2019. Three other Phase 1 drugs are in the Ignyta pipeline.

Biotech investors who have been distracted by better trades elsewhere and waiting for deal news or clinical catalysts decided to jump in.  Today we bounced over 1% to $84 on the XBI after testing the $81 level.

The large cap IBB is flat near  the 107 level in light trading. Biotech investors are awaiting Company updates and nw from the J.P.Morgan Healthcare Conference on January 8, 2018. Large caps overall were weak.

Market Snapshot:

  • Celgene (CELG) took a ~2% hit on Revlimid /Rituxumab Phase III combo study failure in previously untreated patients with Follicular Lymphoma.We remain positive and await early January updates.Hold.
  • Mid-caps perked up hoping for more M&A in early 2018: AGIO, BPMC, EXEL, SAGE, TSRO.
  • Editas (EDIT) is up to $28 level on a 10% five day run after raising $50M on December 6 at a price of $25.40. Editas has a CRISPR/cas9 gene editing platform for  hematologic diseases such as sickle cll disease.
  • Array Biopharma (ARRY) soared more than 7% on big volume probably with small cap strength with RXDX.
  • Glycomimetics (GLYC) was up more than 5% continuing strong momentum after a positive trial 10 days ago on a leukemia drug with improvements in overall median survival.

Stay long for early January updates. XBI now at $84 is favored for deals and momentum.

Disclosure: Long CELG EDIT.

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