Regardless of whether you believe in "Medicare for All" or not, the Covid19 crisis has let us know we need something. The first world health care systems - public, private, and the socialized systems of Europe - were all woefully unprepared for this fight.
The amount of money spent on producing and stockpiling weapons of war - missiles, tanks, land mines, rifles, grenades, you name it - and there's always more if needed; yet the stockpiles of weapons of life to arm our Doctors, Nurses and healthcare workers was simply just not there. Priorities much, Governments of the World?
A lot of people with a lot of money have it pretty good - not just because they have a lot of money; but because the ignorance of living in a bubble keeps them out of touch from the real world where pain, fear, and suffering is felt every day. Sending your kids to Spring Break in the middle of a growing pandemic? Must be nice to be so oblivious to the world around you.
The "Me, me, me" mentality. People going about their daily lives as if nothing is going on. Not afraid because they know they are healthy, not thinking for a second that their actions may affect - or even kill - their own or someone else's loved ones because they contribute to spreading the virus. We are still likely months away - at least - from the healthcare / pharmaceutical industry coming up with an effective treatment or vaccine and we gotta take this seriously until then.
People are cursing a lot more on Twitter and Facebook. F-bombs everywhere from those who never used to before. These are tough, emotional times, but calls for unity are and will be a much more effective strategy than continuing to divide us even further at a time when humanity needs us to work together for solutions. It's frustrating when those you rely on do not respond in the way that wish them to, but you can make a difference in people's lives every day by spreading solutions, kindness, empathy and compassion - the kind of stuff you DO want to spread; the first step is to just stay the fk (see what I did there) home until we have effective solutions in place.
Some quarantine stocks I'm eyeballing right now. Caveat is that I believe the market is in for another pretty big downturn before this Covid19 thing is done. There's so much pork in the "stimulus" bill, from what I've read, that it doesn't seem like it's going to do much to stave off some really damaging economic events. At that point there will be some really sweet deals in the market.
Titan Pharmaceuticals (TTNP): I've been in and out of this one for well over a decade. So many opportunities to trade and I believe another one may be upon us. Titan's claim to fame is Probuphine, a slow-releasing buprenorphine implant based on the company's ProNeura technology. Titan recently re-aquired all licensing rights that had belonged to Vanda Pharmaceuticals and - according to the latest annual and quarterly report - brought in about $200k in sales revenue for the fourth quarter.
That's a pretty soft total for now, but some key events over the past year have set the company up for potential growth and share price turnaround. Briefly, approval in Europe, a growing sales force in the USA, multiple US partnerships and sales avenues, Probuphine's addition to the Federal Supply Schedule, and continuing grant money from the NIDA. I'll go into more detail in a future blog post, but for now, them are the highlights.
TTNP traded for over two bucks about a year ago. Was a nice runup that I mentioned on Twitter, but shares massively traded off to their current levels. There is still a lot of short interest in the stock and it's still a very risky play, as even a cute little market cap of under twenty million is not justified based on current sales numbers. There's also the chance of a reverse split, even though shareholders voted against it in the most recent shareholder meetings (seen that story before, tho, if a company wants to conduct a reverse split, the lawyers will help them find a way - damned be the shareholders).
Titan recently received a 180 day extension on getting the share price back to over a dollar, so the likelihood of an imminent reverse split is less and it gives the company time to produce news that could drive the share price much higher, as has happened so many times in the past.
ProNeura is for real, the opioid pandemic is for real, and that combination makes a pretty good speculative play in TTNP while it is trading at these deflated numbers. Worth some 'out on the town' money, in my opinion, especially since there is more 'out on the town' money sitting in our bank accounts since we are not allowed out in the town. #QuarantineLife
Cel-Sci Corp (CVM): I've spent a huge amount of time talking about CVM during the past year as it has run from a couple of bucks up to over seventeen at one point. Also a risky play since it relies on the Phase III results of the largest head and neck cancer trial ever conducted - but if those results are positive, this thing will skyrocket even more than it already has. Browse my previous blog posts regarding Cel-Sci for much more in-depth analysis, but here's the brief:
- Results should be imminent for the Phase III Multikine trial.
- Multikine is an immunotherapeutic treatment being tested in patients BEFORE they receive standard of care cancer treatment, while the immune system is still in tact.
- If successful, the market for Multikine is in the tens of billions of dollars.
- Cel-Sci partnered with University of Georgia to investigate its LEAPS technology in the fight against COVID19.
- Institutional ownership of CVM has grown exponentially over the past year.
- Insiders have bought at just about every dip over the past year.
Given all the above, CVM has huge potential if that Multikine trial is successful, and as I already mentioned, results should be out soon. Company CEO Geert Kersten pulled the annual shareholder meeting ahead by a month, so an update should be provided at that point. Additionally, we're at the point where another IDMC announcement should come out, if news of a trial end is not released first.
On the flip side, if Multikine is proven ineffective, then the share price will sink hard and swift. There will be no supporting the crash, as LEAPS is still in preclinical studies.
Another risky play, such is the biotech sector, but again - we have more 'night on the town' money sitting around since we can't go out on the town.
Zosana Pharma (ZSAN): I recently discussed Zosana as a stock market dip rebound play, take a look at that blog post for additional detail. Zosana has an NDA in with the FDA for Qtrypta,a formulation of Zolmitriptan using the company's proprietary microneedle system on a patch for the treatment of chronic migraines. Decision Day from the FDA is in October and - as is customary in the developmental biotech sector - I do expect a bit of a runup leading into the decision.
The migraine treatment market is in the multi-billions, so if Zosana can chip away at any bit of market share there, then ZSAN shareholders can benefit pretty heftily. There is always speculation that a partnership or a buyout can occur before the decision day.
Shares of ZSAN were pushing five bucks about a year ago, there's been dilution since, but still worth the risk/reward as a rebound play, in VFC's humble opinion.
As always, this is a risky play in a risky sector. Conduct your own DD and devise your own strategy.
Disclosure: VFC is long TTNP, CVM, ZSAN, and has no affiliation with any of the companies mentioned in this blog post. Just a guy with an opinion and a keyboard.