Insider buying/selling activity is something that we believe can offer a significant amount of 'signal' in the Canadian small/micro cap markets. Insiders are always long on their company's shares one way or another, so when they choose to trade their cash for more of their company's paper it is worth making note of. Every two to three weeks MedicalGold.ca will publish a Top 5 Insider Buy List highlighting the Canadian biotech/pharma stocks that experienced the largest insider buying in the previous period.
We will also be keeping tabs on the performance of the companies highlighted in these bi-weekly posts to see how they perform over longer time periods, and perhaps more importantly if a trend of insider activity begins to develop. Occasionally, we will also highlight unusually aggressive insider selling activity as heavy insider selling has a history of preceding large share price declines in micro-cap stocks.
As always, our aim will be to provide valuable signals and we will also overlay a fundamental context in addition to technical analysis of company charts.
The micro-cap Canadian biotech sector remains in a bear market trend with little evidence that a bottom is approaching. Insider buying activity showed a steady uptick in May relative to April. However, only FSD Pharma (HUGE) has formed a legitimate chart pattern bottom. HUGE shares will need to decisively break-out above resistance at $1.40 in order to complete the pattern and target the next level of resistance near $1.75.
FSD makes our list for the fifth time this year.
FSD Pharma (CSE:HUGE) is a biopharmaceutical company developing treatments for neuro and inflammatory disorders. The company’s focus is on developing and acquiring assets to augment the efforts to complete Phase 2 clinical trials and enter Phase 3 clinical trials for its three drug candidates.
The company has had two key developments that contributed to its increasing stock price:
Aeterna Zentaris is a specialty biopharmaceutical company developing and commercializing a diversified portfolio of pharmaceutical and diagnostic products focused on areas of significant unmet medical need. The Company's lead product, macimorelin (Macrilen™; Ghryvelin®), is the first and only U.S. FDA and European Commission approved oral test indicated for the diagnosis of adult growth hormone deficiency (AGHD). The Company is leveraging the clinical success and compelling safety profile of macimorelin to develop it for the diagnosis of childhood-onset growth hormone deficiency (CGHD), an area of significant unmet need, in collaboration with Novo Nordisk.
Aeterna Zentaris is dedicated to the development of therapeutic assets and has recently taken steps to establish a growing pre-clinical pipeline to potentially address unmet medical needs across a number of indications, including neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD), Parkinson's disease (PD), hypoparathyroidism and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS; Lou Gehrig's disease). Additionally, the Company is developing an oral prophylactic bacterial vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) and Chlamydia trachomatis.
Antibe is a clinical stage biotechnology company leveraging its proprietary hydrogen sulfide platform to develop next-generation safer therapies that target inflammation arising from a wide range of medical conditions. The company’s current pipeline includes assets that seek to overcome the gastrointestinal (“GI”) ulcers and bleeding associated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (“NSAIDs”). Antibe’s lead drug, otenaproxesul, is in clinical development as a safer alternative to opioids and today’s NSAIDs for post-operative pain. Antibe’s second pipeline drug, ATB-352, is being developed for a specialized acute pain indication. The company’s anticipated next target is inflammatory bowel disease (“IBD”), a condition long in need of safer, more effective therapies.
Ortho is a clinical stage orthobiologics company dedicated to the development of novel therapeutic soft tissue repair technologies to dramatically improve the success rate of orthopedic and sports medicine surgeries. Our proprietary RESTORE technology platform is a proprietary muco-adhesive Chitosan-based biopolymer matrix, specifically designed to deliver biologics such as Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) or Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC), to augment and guide the regeneration of new tissue in various musculoskeletal conditions. ORTHO-R, our lead Chitosan-PRP hybrid drug/biologic implant combination product, is formulated and designed to increase the healing rates of occupational and sports related injuries to tendons, meniscus and ligaments. Other formulations are being developed for cartilage repair, bone void filling and osteoarthritis treatment. The proprietary Chitosan-PRP combination ORTHO-R implant can be directly applied into the site of injury by a surgeon during a routine operative procedure without significantly extending the time of the surgery and without further intervention. Considering the significant potential of our technology platform, Ortho continues to assess new therapeutic target uses outside of the soft tissue repair field.
Rakovina Therapeutics Inc. is focused on the development of new cancer treatments based on novel DNA-damage response (DDR) technologies. The Company has established a pipeline of novel DNA-damage response inhibitors with the goal of advancing one or more drug candidates into human clinical trials and obtaining marketing approval for new cancer therapeutics from Health Canada, the United States Food and Drug Administration and similar international regulatory agencies.
The most interesting chart on this week's list is ProMis Neurosciences (NASDAQ:PMN). PMN recently uplisted to the Nasdaq and the TSX-listed version has strong support in the $7.50 to $8.00 area. In addition, PMN made a double-bottom at $5.70 in May/June. This offers a solid support reference point which can help to gauge downside risk.
ProMIS Neurosciences Inc. is a development stage biotechnology company focused on discovering and developing antibody therapeutics selectively targeting toxic oligomers implicated in the development and progression of neurodegenerative diseases, in particular Alzheimer’s disease (AD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Parkinson’s disease (PD). The Company’s proprietary target discovery engine is based on the use of two complementary techniques. The Company applies its thermodynamic, computational discovery platform - ProMIS™ and Collective Coordinates - to predict novel targets known as Disease Specific Epitopes on the molecular surface of misfolded proteins. Using this unique approach, the Company is developing novel antibody therapeutics for AD, ALS and PD. ProMIS is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, with offices in Cambridge, Massachusetts. ProMIS is listed on Nasdaq and the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol PMN.
Eupraxia is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development of locally delivered, extended-release alternatives to currently approved drugs. Each of Eupraxia's product candidates has the potential to address therapeutic areas with high unmet medical need and strives to provide improved patient benefit by delivering targeted, long-lasting activity with fewer side effects. Eupraxia's lead product candidate, EP-104IAR, is currently in Phase 2 development for the treatment of pain due to OA of the knee. In addition to EP-104IAR, Eupraxia is developing a pipeline of earlier-stage long-acting formulations. Potential pipeline candidates include a range of drugs for indications such as postsurgical pain (EP-105), and post-surgical site infections (EP-201), each designed to improve on the activity and tolerability of approved drugs.
LexaGene is a molecular diagnostics company that has commercialized the MiQLab® System for fast and easy detection of pathogens and other molecular markers. The System is PCR-based, screens for 24 targets at once, and designed for on-site usage. Their customers include veterinary hospitals and reference laboratories – as well as contract biologic manufacturers. The MiQLab® System delivers excellent sensitivity, specificity, and breadth of detection and returns results in approximately two hours. The MiQLab System is also open-access, which allows end-users to load their own PCR assays onto the System to target any genetic target of interest.
Oncolytics is a biotechnology company developing Pelareorep, an intravenously delivered immunotherapeutic agent. This compound induces anti-cancer immune responses and promotes an inflamed tumor phenotype -- turning "cold" tumors "hot" -- through innate and adaptive immune responses to treat a variety of cancers. Pelareorep has demonstrated synergies with immune checkpoint inhibitors and may also be synergistic with other approved oncology treatments. Oncolytics is currently conducting and planning clinical trials evaluating pelareorep in combination with checkpoint inhibitors and targeted therapies in solid and hematological malignancies as it advances towards a registration study in metastatic breast cancer.
Founded in 2001, Resverlogix is a Calgary based late-stage biotechnology company and the world leader in epigenetics, or gene regulation, with the goal of developing first-in-class therapies for the benefit of patients with chronic disease. Resverlogix is developing a new class of epigenetic therapies designed to regulate the expression of disease-causing genes. They aim to improve patients’ lives by restoring biological functions – altered by serious illnesses such as cardiovascular disease – back to a healthier state. The Company’s clinical program is focused on evaluating the lead epigenetic candidate apabetalone for the treatment of cardiovascular disease and associated comorbidities, and COVID-19.
The work included in this article is based on current events, technical charts, company news releases, and the author’s opinions. It may contain errors, and you shouldn’t make any investment decision based solely on what you read here. This publication contains forward-looking statements, including but not limited to comments regarding predictions and projections. Forward-looking statements address future events and conditions and therefore involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those currently anticipated in such statements. This publication is provided for informational and entertainment purposes only and is not a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Always thoroughly do your own due diligence and talk to a licensed investment adviser prior to making any investment decisions. Junior resource and biotechnology companies can easily lose 100% of their value so read company profiles on www.SEDAR.com for important risk disclosures. It’s your money and your responsibility.