Before the novel coronavirus pandemic, it took an average of 4 years and more than $2 billion to get a drug through FDA safety and efficacy trials. That’s why many scientists and industry observers are so impressed (and concerned) with the speed that vaccine trials for COVID-19 have progressed. And that’s why biotech stocks have been such a popular topic of discussion.
Additionally, as we’ve seen with AstraZeneca’s (NYSE:AZN) drug, even promising drugs far down the pipeline can get caught up during trials. That’s why the trials are so thorough and require large amounts of testing. The current system evolved after a polio vaccine was distributed in the heat of the polio epidemic in the U.S. in 1955. It was faulty, and of the initial 200,000 children given the vaccine, 40,000 got polio, and 10 died.
That said, the speed of the current COVID-19 vaccine is a bit different in that there have already been years of work done on SARS-type viruses, of which COVID-19 is an adaptation. And as we learn about the virus, technology is much faster finding solutions.
Overall, this is all to the benefit of the next generation of drugs and drug therapies. And the seven “A-rated” aggressive biotech stocks I discuss here get the highest marks from my Portfolio Grader. These companies are all making important strides in next-gen solutions for COVID-19, cancer and other sectors. But remember, they’re small companies in a risky space, nibble on them and be patient.
With that in mind, could these investments be a “Master Key” investment? Well, before I get into each one, what exactly do I mean by that? What is a Master Key investment?
You see, in the literal sense a Master Key is a single key that can be used to unlock any door in a building, even though each door has its own individual key. In short, whoever holds this Master Key has the power to unlock any door — and that’s exactly the kind of investment opportunity we look for.
Now, here are the handful of biotech stocks were looking at:
Adaptimmune Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ADAP)
Sorrento Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRNE)
Myovant Sciences (NYSE:MYOV)
Seres Therapeutics (NASDAQ:MCRB)
Kodiak Sciences (NASDAQ:KOD)
Let’s take a closer look at each one.
Biotech Stocks to Buy: ChemoCentryx (CCXI)
This Silicon Valley-based drug company is at the heart of tech world, so it’s no surprise that it is developing innovative solutions to autoimmune diseases, inflammatory disorders and cancer. It has nine drugs in various stages of drug trials, and focuses on orphan and rare diseases.
Its unique approach is to use two specific receptors in molecules to target their responses to particular diseases. In that way, it allows the rest of the body’s immune system to help resist the invader.
One of its drugs for vasculitis, Avacopan, is through trials and has applied for an NDA (new drug application). In turn, it could be in the market this year.
Overall, CCXI stock stock is up nearly 600% in the past year due to the good news on Avacopan. However, it has plenty more on their way. And if the approval comes through, it could mean big things for ChemoCentryx and CCXI stock.
Adaptimmune Therapeutics (ADAP)
This is another clinical stage biotech, with three immune oncology drugs in trials right now. ADAP focuses on using the body’s immune system soldiers, the T cells, to fight solid tumors that are generated by a number of different types of cancer.
As with many newer biotechs, advancements in technology have allowed scientists to learn much more about how cancers fool the immune system into allowing them grow relatively undetected. By triggering different responses from different parts of the cell, in this case helping T cells recognize the cancer, immune oncology drugs may be the new way to treat cancer without massive doses of chemicals.
Moreover, ADAP stock is one of the companies leading this charge. And you can see it in the stock price. In fact, ADAP stock is up more than 600% year-to-date due to some of its breakthroughs. But it still only has a market capitalization of $1.33 billion.
Biotech Stocks to Buy: Sorrento Therapeutics (SRNE)
Source: Cryptographer / Shutterstock.com
This company landed in the headlines this week when it announced that it received FDA approval for a phase 1 clinical trial for its COVI-GUARD antibody testing for COVID-19. In turn, it hopes to get emergency use authorization for the test by late this year or early next year.
Sorrento Therapeutics focuses on immuno-oncology drugs and a proprietary device — Sofusa — that delivers antibodies to the lymphatic system to “train” immune cells to fight cancer.
Obviously, the COVID-19 testing news has created a stir, but its library of antibodies and work in immuno-oncology is the bedrock of its business. However, selling millions of tests would certainly help fund its larger efforts. Right now, it has a more than a dozen drugs in trials, including some COVID-19 vaccines.
Collectively, SRNE stock is up 317% in the past 12 months and 182% year to date — making it one of the best biotech stocks out there.
Biotech Stocks to Buy: Myovant Sciences (MYOV)
This UK-based biotech has only been around since 2016, but it has been hard at work. The company currently has a drug candidate, Relugolix, that is in 5 international phase 3 trials for fibroids, endometriosis pain and advanced prostate cancer.
That’s quite a promising start for Myovant. And while its markets aren’t cancer or some rare disease where prices can be set at premiums, these drugs could have a huge audience. That said, getting a drug through the pipeline and into the market means cash flow, which is the ultimate goal of all clinical biotechs. And doing it quickly is very good for investors.
Overall, the stock has a $2 billion market cap after a 274% run in the past 12 months. And two of its drugs are about to hit the market.
Therefore, MYOV stock is another great option among biotech stocks.
Seres Therapeutics (MCRB)
A couple decades ago, there was a new field of research into what was called the microbiome. Basically, this is the world or organisms and bacteria that live in or on our bodies. Research was beginning to reveal that just like nature keeps a balancing act among its creatures, so do our bodies.
One bacteria gets too powerful due to disease or nutrition, and there’s a reaction. Decades later, Seres Therapeutics has built its clinical stage biotech on developing drugs that work with the gut biome.
It currently has six drugs in various stages of development with support from significant partners. The drugs range from combating Clostridium difficile — or C diff — and colitis to metastatic melanoma. C diff is the leading cause of hospital-caused infection in the U.S., and is responsible for 20,000 deaths a year.
Collectively, MCRB stock is up 452% in the past three months due to the good news on its phase 3 trials. It also has nearly a $2.4 billion market cap, and its unique approach to drug development makes it an attractive takeover target as well. Thus, Seres Therapeutics makes for another great option among biotech stocks.
Biotech Stocks to Buy: Kodiak Sciences (KOD)
This biotech solely focuses on novel therapies for retinal diseases. While younger demographics may not understand the significance of this sector, macular degeneration (aka, going blind) becomes a real issue as people get older.
And now that people are living longer, sight loss affects an even greater number of people.
With that in mind, Kodiak Sciences currently has six drugs in trial stages, and most are in phases 2 and 3. There is big demand for these chronic and debilitating conditions, and Kodiak’s unique intravitreal biopolymer conjugates have been very effective in trials so far.
Overall, KOD stock is up 212% in the past year, but it’s down almost 28% year to date, likely as more attention has gone into COVID-19 vaccine and testing candidates.
While NVAX stock is now in the news due to its COVID-19 vaccine trial, its recent deal with an Indian pharmaceutical company to be able to produce 2 billion vaccines by early next year has also been huge.
The company’s potential vaccine is just wrapping up phase 2 drug trials, and will be starting phase 3 imminently.
All this news has driven the stock through the roof in 2020. In fact, it’s up 2,700% year to date. And it now sports a market cap of nearly $7 billion, which is pretty rich for company that doesn’t have a drug out of clinical trials yet.
Overall, NanoFlu is really the hidden gem in its portfolio. The flu vaccine is in phase 3 trials, and has proven to be more effective than the current leading flu vaccine on the market. This would deliver some significant revenue on a regular basis and help fund the rest of the company’s ambitions.
It’s certainly trading at a COVID-19 premium, but it has some solid fundamentals beyond that horse race.
Bonus Pick: The Guardian: “New pill could spell the end of aging.”
Take a look at this picture:
But don’t be fooled.
Inside is a revolutionary new technology that The Guardian reports could:
“Spell the end of aging”
— The Guardian
And Scientific American says it could allow anyone that takes it to:
“Stay young [forever]”
— Scientific American
This pill is set to completely change the lives of millions of Americans…
And because just one tiny Brisbane company has virtually monopolized this technology with 140 foolproof patents…
Investors who get in on the ground floor stand to become rich beyond their wildest dreams.