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Biotech Daily covers the major announcements from more than 140 ASX-listed biotech companies as well as the major research institutes and developments in government policy.

Published shortly after the stock market closes five days a week - excluding public holidays - Biotech Daily is the only comprehensive daily source of information on the listed biotech sector.

The Biotech Daily Top 40 Index (BDI-40) is selected on the basis of interesting technologies, benefit to human health and investment potential. Market capitalization is important, but is not a sole arbiter.

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November BDI-40 Down 5%, ASX200 Down 3%
Big Caps Down 4%, NBI Up 5%

 Paradigm Up 42%, Genetic Signatures 19%; Factor Down 95%, Admedus 65%

December 3, 2018

It’s been all downhill since the end of winter.
 
The ASX200, the Collective three Big Caps (Cochlear, CSL and Resmed) and the Biotech Daily Top 40 Index (BDI-40) have all lost ground for three months in a row.
 
November started badly for Australian biotech with Cochlear ordered to pay $372 million for a patent case it thought would cost no more than $21 million.
 
Mesoblast’s mesenchymal precursor stem cells missed a cardiac trial primary endpoint, Bionomics announced a review starting with chief executive officer Dr Deborah Rathjen, Phosphagenics won nothing in the $415 million Mylan patent case and Factor’s VF001 did not outperform placebo for venous leg ulcers.
 
We ended November with Admedus emerging from a four-month suspension with its third chief financial officer and fourth company secretary in a year, and a complicated and uncertain capital raising, with Prof Ian Frazer’s blue sky Coridon becoming a private concern of Hong Kong Star Bright and chief executive officer Wayne Paterson to be its chairman for at least five years.
 
And then ITL Health said it would de-list.
 
Some could run parallels with the competence of the Federal Liberal-National Party Government.
 
But we won’t. Unlike the bereft-of-talent Federal Government, the Australian biotechnology sector has many companies vying for promotion.
 
In rebalancing the BDI-40, we err on the side of caution. We are slow to demote (in case a company’s pipeline has further promise) and slow to promote (in case the next trial falls over).
 
Most years there are a few that enter and leave the BDI-40 but this year has been unusual. Viralytics, Psivida and Sirtex have all departed for honorable reasons, but this month marks the first time that four companies will depart the index at the same time.
 
Factor Therapeutics ran a rigorous trial which showed its sole product VF001 was no better than placebo, and was straight in its announcement. With the failure of BNC210 to show the much-claimed superiority as an anti-anxiolytic, Bionomics has drug discovery platforms but not much of a pipeline, ITL expects to delist in February and we can’t use the correct term for Admedus in an industry publication, but “cluster” is a core part.
 
The good news is that Antisense is showing promise for Duchenne’s muscular dystrophy and returns to the index, along with Patrys, which is back from the lab with a new anti-cancer compound, Kazia (formerly Novogen) is moving forward with its glioblastoma trial and Proteomics, after a slow start, is commercializing its diabetic kidney disease test.
 
Seventeen of the BDI-40 companies were up (four by more than 10 percent) one was unchanged and 22 fell (18 by more than 10 percent).
Paradigm was November’s best, up $45 million or 42.1 percent to $152 million, followed by Genetic Signatures (18.6%), Imugene (15.3%), Pro Medicus (10.6%), Neuren (9.5%), Ellex (8.6%), Cyclopharm (8.3%), Clinuvel (6.3%), Compumedics (6.25%) and Starpharma (6.1%).
 
Factor Therapeutics led the falls, losing 95.0 percent of its value to $3 million. Admedus fell 64.6 percent to $17 million having been worth as much as $223 million in September 2014, followed by Airxpanders down 45.9 percent, Impedimed (36.2%), ITL (35.7%), Mesoblast (33.4%), Reva (20.2%), Telix (16.9%), Benitec (16.7%) and Prana (16.7%).
 
The collective market capitalization of the 15 companies in Cannabis Corner edged up 1.5 percent, all due to Elixinol Global which was up $57 million or 25.6 percent to $280 million, with four others up, six companies down and four unchanged.
 
BDI-40 v S&P ASX200 Jun 30, 2006 to Nov 30, 2018 
 
Big Caps (Cochlear, CSL, Resmed) Nov 30, 2015 To Nov 30, 2018
 
 

 

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Biotech Daily Top 40 With Market Capitalization At Nov 30, 2018

 

* Biotech Daily editor, David Langsam, owns shares in Acrux, Amplia, Benitec, Mesoblast, Nanosonics, Neuren,
   Patrys, Polynovo, Prana, Telix and Volpara, as well as non-biotechnology stocks.
   Through Australian Ethical Superannuation he has an indirect interest in a range of biotechnology companies. 

   These holdings are liable to change: http://www.australianethical.com.au/who-we-invest-in