BioShares Biotechnology Clinical Trials (BBC): $19.12, -$0.03, -34.2% YTD

BioShares Biotechnology Products (BBP): $33.68, -$0.41, +9.3% YTD

 

 

MARKET COMMENTARY

 

Wall Street is set to nudge higher having tailed off slightly on Monday as risk aversion set in following the deaths in Germany, the shooting dead of Russia’s ambassador in Turkey, and a gun attack in a mosque in Switzerland. European markets traded higher supported by bank shares after Italy’s government said it wanted approval for up to 20 billion euros to rescue troubled lenders. Asian bourses recorded a mixed trading day. The dollar rose against the yen after Bank of Japan decided to leave its monetary policy unchanged, while gold traded lower. Oil prices rose on expectations of a steep draw in U.S. crude oil stocks.

 

 

MARKET HIGHLIGHTS

 

Aurinia Pharmaceuticals announced it has entered into a long-term agreement with Lonza for the manufacture of voclosporin active pharmaceutical ingredient (API). This agreement follows a successful multi-year clinical manufacturing relationship where the companies have been refining the process and analytical methods to produce clinical and commercial supplies of voclosporin. Under the terms of the agreement, Lonza agrees to produce cGMP-grade voclosporin drug substance for use in Aurinia’s Phase III lupus nephritis (LN) clinical program and for future commercial use. The agreement also provides an option to have Lonza exclusively supply API for up to 20 years.

 

BioLife Solutions today announced that it has entered into a ten year supply agreement with TissueGene, a leading developer of regenerative therapies for the treatment of various orthopedic diseases.  BioLife’s CryoStor clinical grade cell freeze media is incorporated into TissueGene’s manufacturing process for Invossa, a first-in-class osteoarthritis drug designed to conveniently and effectively treat osteoarthritis of the knee through a single intra-articular injection. Clinical trials completed in Korea and on-going trials in the US have demonstrated pain relief, increased mobility, and improvements in joint structure – offering substantial convenience for osteoarthritis patients who would otherwise need surgery.

 

Achaogen announced the completion of its previously announced underwritten public offering of 7,475,000 shares of its common stock at a public offering price of $13.50 per share, which includes the exercise in full of the underwriters’ option to purchase up to an additional 975,000 shares of common stock. All shares in the offering were sold by Achaogen, with gross proceeds to Achaogen of approximately $100.9 million and net proceeds of approximately $94.5 million, after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses. Leerink Partners, Stifel and Guggenheim Securities acted as joint book-running managers for the offering. SunTrust Robinson Humphrey acted as lead manager for the offering.

 

Moberg Pharma AB announced that the company has completed the divestment of the PediaCare® brand to Strides Arcolab International Limited, UK for a total consideration of $5.6 million, whereof $0.6 million comprises inventory value.

 

Evogene will transfer its stock exchange listing to the NASDAQ Global Market from the New York Stock Exchange.  Evogene’s ordinary shares will continue to trade on the NYSE until the market close on December 29, 2016.  The Company expects its ordinary shares will begin trading on NASDAQ on December 30, 2016, and its shares will continue to trade under the ticker symbol "EVGN."

 

Minerva Neurosciences announced the appointment of Michael Davidson, M.D., as chief medical officer effective December 19, 2016.  His responsibilities will include the strategic development and clinical advancement of the Company`s products, which target schizophrenia (MIN-101), insomnia (MIN-202), major depressive disorder (MIN-117) and Parkinson`s disease (MIN-301).

 

Conatus Pharmaceuticals announced it has entered into an exclusive option, collaboration and license agreement for the global development and commercialization of its first-in-class, orally active pan-caspase inhibitor emricasan with Novartis. Under the terms of the agreement with Novartis, Conatus will receive $50 million upfront, and is eligible to receive $7 million following the exercise of the license option. Conatus can borrow up to $15 million in the form of convertible promissory notes under an investment agreement with Novartis. Conatus is eligible to receive significant payments if certain development, regulatory and commercial milestones are met. Furthermore, Conatus is eligible to receive tiered double digit royalties on emricasan single agent sales and tiered single to double digit royalties on sales of combination products containing emricasan. Conatus has the option to co-commercialize emricasan in the U.S, including combination therapies, on a cost-sharing and revenue-sharing basis in lieu of U.S. royalties and with reduced ex-U.S. royalties. Conatus retains limited rights to develop other pan-caspase inhibitors.

 

Akebia Therapeutics and Otsuka Pharmaceutical announced they have entered into a collaboration and license agreement in the U.S. for vadadustat, an oral hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) stabilizer currently in development for the treatment of anemia associated with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Anemia related to CKD affects an estimated 1.8 million patients in the U.S. and arises from the kidney’s failure to produce adequate amounts of erythropoietin, a key hormone stimulating the production of red blood cells. Left untreated, anemia significantly accelerates patients’ overall deterioration of health with increased morbidity and mortality.

 

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals announced positive top-line results from its Phase II exploratory study (-019 Study) of pimavanserin in patients with Alzheimer’s disease psychosis (AD Psychosis). As a selective serotonin inverse agonist (SSIA) preferentially targeting 5-HT(2A) receptors, pimavanserin has a different biological mechanism than other marketed antipsychotics. Pimavanserin has been approved by the FDA for hallucinations and delusions associated with Parkinson’s disease psychosis and currently is being studied in several other disease states, including AD Psychosis. The FDA has not approved any drug to treat AD Psychosis.

 

Corporate Venture Capital Ltd., (Subsidiary of Sosei Group Corporation, a Tokyo Stock Exchange Mothers listed company), and Pluristem Therapeutics announced the signing of a binding term sheet for the establishment of a new Japanese corporation (NewCo) for the clinical development and commercialization of Pluristem’s PLX-PAD cell therapy product in Japan. Following completion of fund-raising, the parties plan to establish NewCo in Japan. Pluristem will own 35% of NewCo in return for its contribution of a perpetual license to commercialize PLX-PAD for Critical Limb Ischemia (CLI) in Japan. All proprietary rights related to PLX-PAD will be exclusively owned by Pluristem. Sosei CVC’s investment fund, Sosei RMF1, together with additional Japanese investors, will raise and invest approximately $11 million, equivalent to approximately Yen 1.3 billion, in return for ownership of 65% of NewCo.

 

Benitec Biopharma announced significant progress on use of the company’s technology for development of a ddRNAi based therapeutic for the treatment of hepatitis B virus (HBV). A combination approach of using a single administration of the DNA-directed RNA interference (ddRNAi) agents BB-101, BB-102 or BB-103 with current standard of care agents used to treat the disease, demonstrates a robust and sustained suppression of HBV in an in vivo model.

 

Soligenix announced that it has extended its collaboration with IDT Biologika for the manufacture of RiVax, the Company’s proprietary heat-stable ricin toxin vaccine. Under the terms of the collaboration, Soligenix will scale-up the formulation/filling processes and continue development and validation of analytical methods established at IDT to advance the program towards a commercially viable scalable technology for the RiVax vaccine product compliant with current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMPs).

 

Nabriva Therapeutics announced that it has achieved 60% of its enrollment target in the lefamulin evaluation against pneumonia (LEAP) 1 trial. LEAP 1 is a global, registrational Phase III clinical trial evaluating lefamulin in patients with moderate to severe community-acquired bacterial pneumonia (CABP). Based on current sample size estimates, the company expects to complete enrollment of 550 patients by the end of the second quarter of 2017.

 

Endo International announced that it has appointed Blaise Coleman as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, effective December 19, 2016. Mr. Coleman has been serving as Endo’s Interim Chief Financial Officer since November 22, 2016.

 

Neos Therapeutics announced that it has completed the resubmission of a NDA to the FDA for Cotempla XR-ODT, the Company’s methylphenidate extended-release orally disintegrating tablet, for the treatment of ADHD.

 

Impax Laboratories announced that J. Kevin Buchi, a member of the Impax Board of Directors, has been appointed Interim President and CEO. The Company’s Board has come to a mutual agreement with G. Frederick Wilkinson that Mr. Wilkinson separate from his positions as President and CEO and as a member of the Board, effective immediately.

 

KemPharm announced that its IND application for KP201/IR has been granted "Fast Track" designation by the FDA. KP201/IR, KemPharm’s co-lead product candidate, is a single-entity benzhydrocodone HCl immediate release abuse-deterrent prodrug for the treatment of acute pain. KemPharm expects to initiate human clinical trials of KP201/IR in the first half of 2017.

 

Celgene announced that OTEZLA (apremilast), Celgene’s oral selective inhibitor of phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4), has been granted full marketing authorization by Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) for the treatment of adult patients with plaque psoriasis with an inadequate response to topical therapies, as well as adult patients with psoriatic arthritis.

 

InVivo Therapeutics announced that a new patient with a T8-9 fracture dislocation injury has been enrolled into The INSPIRE Study (InVivo Study of Probable Benefit of the Neuro-Spinal Scaffold for Safety and Neurologic Recovery in Subjects with Complete Thoracic AIS A Spinal Cord Injury) at the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, NC. Domagoj Coric, M.D., of Carolina Neurosurgery and Spine Associates, Chief of Neurosurgery at the Carolinas Medical Center and a member of the INSPIRE Study Steering Committee, performed the implantation with his partner, Samuel Chewning, M.D. Surgery was performed approximately 19 hours after the injury occurred. Dr. Coric and Dr. William Bockenek, Chief Medical Officer at Carolinas Rehabilitation, are Co-principal Investigators at this site.

 

Cardiome Pharma announced that it has initiated the commercial launch of XYDALBA (dalbavancin hydrochloride) in Germany ahead of the expected 2017 launch, and that it has made its first sales of the drug to German hospitals. XYDALBA is approved by the EMA for the treatment of acute bacterial skin and skin structure infections (ABSSSI) in adults. It is administered as either a single, 30-minute intravenous infusion of 1500 mg, or as two infusions, 1000 mg followed one week later by 500 mg.

 

TESARO announced that the FDA has granted Priority Review for the niraparib NDA. Niraparib is a PARP inhibitor that is being evaluated as a potential new treatment option for patients with recurrent epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancer following response to platinum-based chemotherapy. The FDA has established a target action date under the PDUFA of June 30, 2017, and is not currently planning to hold an advisory committee meeting to discuss this application.

 

DiaMedica reported positive results of its most recent clinical trial. The study identified a dose of DM199 via intravenous administration that produced pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic activity that were comparable to those produced by the reference drug, human urinary KLK1 (trade name Kailikang) approved in Asia. The Company plans to use the results of this study to guide Phase II dosing in upcoming clinical trials.

 

Juniper Pharmaceuticals announced the appointment of Jeffrey Young as CFO, Treasurer and Secretary effective January 1, 2017.

 

Astellas Pharma and Immunomic Therapeutics announced that the FDA has granted Fast Track designation for the drug candidate ASP0892 for the mitigation of severe hypersensitivity reactions due to peanut allergy. ASP0892 is a new DNA vaccine program based on the investigational LAMP-Vax platform. A Phase I clinical trial to evaluate the safety, tolerability and immune response of ASP0892 in adults allergic to peanuts has been initiated.

 

ImmuNext announced that it has entered into an agreement with F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd and Hoffmann-La Roche Inc. focused on the development of novel therapeutics that modulate the immune system for the treatment of inflammation and autoimmune diseases. Under the terms of the agreement, ImmuNext will grant Roche a worldwide, exclusive license to develop and commercialize therapeutics that agonize the V-region immunoglobulin-containing suppressor of T-cell activation (VISTA) signaling pathway. VISTA is a negative checkpoint regulator.

 

Cellectar Biosciences announced two patent allowances for imaging agents delivered via the company’s patented PDC platform. The USPTO issued patent allowances covering method of use for CLR 124 in the detection of radiation- and chemo-insensitive cancer or cancer metastases. Concurrently, the Japanese patent office granted a composition of matter allowance covering two optical imaging agents in the CLR 1500 series.

 

ANI Pharmaceuticals announced the launch of Vancomycin HCl 125mg and 250mg capsules, indicated for treatment of C. difficile-associated diarrhea, in a fifty count bottle.

 

Perrigo announced it has received approvals from the FDA for ANDAs referencing GlaxoSmithKline‘s Nicorette White Ice Mint Gum (nicotine polacrilex gum 2 mg and 4 mg).

 

Juno Therapeutics and Celgene announced that the FDA has granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to investigational drug JCAR017 for the treatment of patients with relapsed/refractory (r/r) aggressive large B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), including diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), not otherwise specified (de novo or transformed from indolent lymphoma), Primary Mediastinal B-cell Lymphoma (PMBCL) or Grade 3B Follicular Lymphoma. In addition, the EMA Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) and Committee for Advanced Therapies (CAT) have granted JCAR017 access to the Priority Medicines (PRIME) scheme for r/r DLBCL.

 

Pain Therapeutics announced it plans to meet with the FDA in person on Monday, February 13, 2017 to discuss the regulatory path forward for REMOXY ER. The Company will provide details of this FDA meeting after receipt of final meeting minutes.

 

Repros Therapeutics announced it has requested a meeting to discuss Phase III requirements for the development of Proellex (telapristone acetate) for the treatment of endometriosis. The Company anticipates a meeting will be scheduled during the first half of 2017.

 

Sucampo Pharmaceuticals announced its intention to offer, subject to market and other conditions, $225.0 million principal amount of convertible senior notes due 2021 in a private offering to qualified institutional buyers pursuant to Rule 144A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. Sucampo also expects to grant the initial purchasers of the notes a 13-day option to purchase up to an additional $33.75 million principal amount of notes, solely to cover over-allotments, if any. Sucampo currently expects to use all of the net proceeds of the Note Offering, together with cash on hand, to repay in full amounts due under Sucampo’s senior secured credit facility, including all accrued but unpaid interest and a prepayment premium, concurrently with the closing of the Note Offering. Sucampo intends to use any remaining net proceeds from the Note Offering for general corporate purposes.

 

Draper announced a three-year agreement with Pfizer under which the companies will collaborate to create unique versions of Draper’s Microphysiological Systems (MPS) technology with the aim of improving preclinical safety testing and creating more effective disease models.

 

Nabriva Therapeutics AG announced the closing of its previously announced rights offering for up to 588,127 common shares, including common shares represented by ADSs, to its existing common shareholders and ADS holders and its previously announced underwritten offering of 3,267,750 ADSs, representing all of the 326,775 unsubscribed common shares, including common shares represented by ADSs. All of the ADSs and common shares were sold by Nabriva. Each ADS represents one tenth (1/10) of a common share. The rights offering and the subsequent underwritten offering together generated aggregate gross proceeds of approximately $25 million. Aggregate net proceeds to Nabriva from the rights offering and the underwritten offering are expected to be approximately $21 million, after deducting estimated fees and offering expenses. Nabriva plans to use the net proceeds from the rights offering and the underwritten offering for general corporate purposes, including working capital and pre-commercial activities. Cantor Fitzgerald acted as financial advisor to Nabriva in connection with the rights offering and as sole book-running manager of the underwritten offering.

 

Puma Biotechnology announced that it will voluntarily move its stock exchange listing from the New York Stock Exchange to the Nasdaq Stock Market. The move is expected to become effective on or about January 3, 2017, and the Company’s common stock will continue to trade under the ticker symbol “PBYI.”

 

Biogen announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Michel Vounatsos as Chief Executive Officer and member of the Board of Directors, effective January 6, 2017. Vounatsos previously held the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at Biogen.

 

Sarepta Therapeutics announced that the EMA validated the previously submitted MAA for eteplirsen to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy amenable to exon 51 skipping. Sarepta is seeking conditional approval of eteplirsen in the EU through the centralized procedure. Validation of the MAA confirms that the submission is accepted and starts the formal review process by the EMA’s Committee for Human Medicinal Products (CHMP). The standard review period is 210 days (plus additional time for applicant to respond to questions from the agency).

 

Theravance Biopharma announced that GlaxoSmithKline and Innoviva have initiated a Phase III study of the Closed Triple (the triple combination therapy of fluticasone furoate, umeclidinium, and vilanterol in a single ELLIPTA inhaler) in patients with asthma. The Closed Triple is one of the drug development programs for which Theravance Biopharma has an economic interest in future payments that may be made by GSK or one of its affiliates pursuant to its agreements with Innoviva. Should the Closed Triple be approved and commercialized, Theravance Biopharma is entitled to receive an 85% economic interest in the royalties paid by GSK on worldwide net sales. Those royalties are upward-tiering from 6.5% to 10%. Additionally, Theravance Biopharma is not responsible for any costs related to the Closed Triple.

 

Janssen Sciences announced that two Phase III studies to evaluate the safety and efficacy of switching virologically suppressed patients from a three or four drug (integrase inhibitor-, non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor-, or boosted protease inhibitor-based) antiretroviral regimen to the two drug regimen of rilpivirine (Janssen) and dolutegravir (ViiV Healthcare) met the primary endpoint of non inferiority at week 48.

 

Amgen and UCB announced that an application seeking marketing approval of romosozumab for the treatment of osteoporosis for those at high risk of fracture has been submitted for review to the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency (PMDA) in Japan. Amgen and UCB are co-developing romosozumab worldwide, with development in Japan being led by Amgen Astellas BioPharma (AABP) K.K., a joint venture between Amgen and Astellas Pharma, a pharmaceutical company headquartered in Tokyo.

 

Genmab A/S announced that Janssen Pharmaceutical K.K. has submitted a New Drug Application to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) in Japan for the use of daratumumab (DARZALEX) for the treatment of adults with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma. The submission of the application triggers milestone payments totaling USD 10 million to Genmab from Janssen. Genmab is updating its financial guidance for 2016 to include the milestones. In August 2012, Genmab granted Janssen Biotech, Inc. an exclusive worldwide license to develop, manufacture and commercialize daratumumab.

 

Pharnext SA announced that it has completed patient enrollment for its international pivotal Phase III PLEO-CMT trial of PXT3003, Pharnext’s lead PLEODRUG, for the treatment of Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease Type 1A (CMT1A).

 

Evolve BioSystems announced that the European Patent Office has upheld European Patent EP2405918, overcoming an opposition launched by infant formula manufacturer Danone. "This was a great win which further emphasizes the strength of our patent portfolio in the prebiotic/bifidobacteria space as it pertains to infant nutrition," said Dr. Samara Freeman, Evolve’s Director of Intellectual Property.

 

Accuray announced new data showing that 80 percent of patients with solitary plasmacytoma of the bone (SPB) had excellent cancer control four years after receiving intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) delivered with the TomoTherapy System, in addition to immunomodulatory drugs (IMiDs) or proteasome inhibitors (PI).[1] The concurrent treatments were well-tolerated and toxicity was manageable with standard approaches. The study was presented on November 11, 2016 at the 2016 Best of ASTRO meeting, a two-day summary of the ASTRO Annual Meeting, at which the most relevant and practice-changing abstracts are presented.

 

Opsona Therapeutics announced the preliminary results from its ongoing prospective, open label Phase I/II study being conducted with OPN-305 in second-line lower (Low and intermediate-1) risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) which created interest when presented recently at the 58th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) in San Diego by Prof Garcia-Manero from the MD Anderson Cancer Center.

 

PixarBio announced that Steve Chartier PixarBio VP of Regulatory Affairs has been named PixarBio’s Chief Operating Officer (COO).

 

Bristol-Myers Squibb and PsiOxus Therapeutics announced an agreement granting Bristol-Myers Squibb exclusive worldwide rights to NG-348, a pre-clinical stage, “armed” oncolytic virus with the goal of addressing solid tumors. The agreement is subject to clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act. Under the terms of the agreement, Bristol-Myers Squibb will grant PsiOxus a $50 million upfront payment and will be solely responsible for global clinical development and commercialization activities related to NG-348. PsiOxus is also eligible to receive up to $886 million in development, regulatory and sales-based milestones, as well as royalties on net sales. Bristol-Myers Squibb will also be responsible for providing PsiOxus funding to support activities related to the preclinical development of NG-348.

 

 

ANALYST RECOMMENDATIONS

 

Credit Suisse analyst Vamil Divan revised his price target and ratings for the following companies: Abbvie increased to $61 from $60; Aimmune Therapeutics increased to $38 from $35; Alder Biopharmaceuticals decreased to $33 from $38; Alkermes increased to $72 from $71; Corvus increased to $26 from $25; Edge Therapeutics increased to $19 from $18; Eli Lilly removed from the “Focus List;” Esperion Therapeutics decreased to $12 from $14; Johnson & Johnson decreased to $122 from $123; Merck decreased to $71 from $73; Portola decreased to $20 from $25; Teva decreased to $45 from $47; Versartis upgraded to “outperform” from “underperform” and increased his price target to $20 from $11.

 

Credit Suisse analyst Alethia Young revised her price target and ratings for the following companies: Alexion decreased to $160 from $165; Amgen downgraded to “neutral” from “outperform” and decreased her price target $180 from $200; Biogen decreased to $312 from $322; Celgene added to the “Focus List;” Gilead increased to $93 from $90; Regeneron upgraded to “outperform” from “neutral” increased her price target to $485 from $481; Vertex decreased to $100 from $115.

 

Chardan analyst Gbola Amusa upgraded Clovis to “neutral” from “sell” and increased his price target to $36 from $15, citing the FDA granting accelerated approval to Rubraca, a poly-ADP-ribose polymerase inhibitor, for the third-line and later treatment of ovarian cancers with mutations in the BRCA1/2 genes.   

 

Canaccord Genuity analyst Dewey Steadman assumed coverage of the following stocks: Aerie Pharmaceuticals with a “buy” rating and $50 price target; Inotek Pharmaceuticals with “buy” rating and $20 price target; KemPharm with a “buy” rating and $9 price target; Lipocine with a “buy” rating and $15 price target.

 

B. Riley analyst Greg Chodaczek initiated coverage of Adamis Pharmaceuticals with a “buy” rating and $5 price target, citing Adamis is a biopharmaceutical and compounding company focused on providing high quality, low-cost solutions to patients, physicians, and healthcare organizations in the multi-billion dollar therapeutic areas of respiratory disease and allergies.

 

Janney Capital analyst Debjit Chattopadhyay assumed coverage of Corcept Therapeutics with a “sell” rating and $7 fair value, citing the near-term cash and increasing operating leverage should be sufficient to fund operations, but hiccups during NCE development are written in stone.

 

HC Wainwright analyst Ed Arce increased his price target of Conatus Pharmaceuticals to $18 from $9, citing Conatus announced an exclusive global license and collaboration agreement with Novartis covering emricasan, across all indications, either as a single-agent or in potential combination therapies.

 

BMO analyst Matthew Luchini initiated coverage of the following companies: Spark Therapeutics with an “outperform” rating and $69 price target; Regeneron with a “market perform” rating and $419 price target.

 

Ladenburg Thalmann analyst Kevin DeGeeter initiated coverage of Xenetic Biosciences with a “buy” rating and $10 price target, citing XBIO is an under-followed hematology and orphan oncology story with multiple potential clinical catalysts in 2017.

 

Goldman analyst Salveen Richter initiated coverage of Sarepta with a “neutral” rating and $40 price target, citing a gradual launch due to payor coverage, patient genotyping and securing of IV/infusion sites, followed by a sales inflection post 3-6+ months.

 

RBC analyst Adnan Butt increased his price target of Seattle Genetics to $82 from $72, citing front-line Hodgkin Lymphoma Phase III study (E1 study) that reads out in 2017 means Adcetris could be a blockbuster and SGEN could be a significant cancer player quickly on its own and increase prospects of being acquired.

 

Roth transferred coverage of the following companies due to the departure of Joseph Pantginis. Coverage of the following companies was transferred to Sa’ar Yaniv: BioLineRx, Applied Genetic Technologies, Vascular Biogenics, Concert Pharmaceuticals, BioBlast Pharma, Strongbridge Biopharma, Cytokinetics, Spark Therapeutics, Fortress Biotech, Bionomics Limited, OvaScience. The firm transferred coverage of the following companies to Mark Breidenbach: Viralytics Limited, Vical, TG Therapeutics, Sorrento Therapeutics, Stemline Therapeutics, Aduro Biotech, Pieris Pharmaceuticals, Lion Biotechnologies, Celldex Therapeutics, Aptose Biosciences, Oxford BioMedica. The firm transferred coverage of the following companies to Michael Higgins: Palatin Technologies, Neuralstem, AmpliPhi Biosciences, Flex Pharma. The firm transferred coverage of the following companies to Jeff Martin: Capricor Therapeutics, Actinium Pharmaceuticals. The firm transferred coverage of Ligand Pharmaceuticals, Pharming Group to Scott Henry. Roth dropped coverage of the following companies: Verastem, Ohr Pharmaceutical, Sophiris Bio, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, DelMar Pharmaceuticals, ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Fibrocell Science, Cerulean Pharma, Heat Biologics, GenVec, Peregrine Pharmaceuticals, Argos Therapeutics.