2Q milestones face investor inertia: Data vs. gravity

There is a spate of pivotal clinical data due to be announced in the second quarter, but the word on the Street is that investors shouldn't expect even good data to lift the sector.

"This spring has more key events than in the history of this industry," said UBS Securities analyst Marc Ostro.

Among the upcoming announcements are pivotal data of BioChem Pharma Inc.'s lamivudine in hepatitis, due this month; with data in May from AutoImmune Inc.'s Colloral oral type 2 collagen and Myloral bovine myelin for rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis, respectively; and from Alpha-Beta Technology Inc.'s Betafectin PGG-glucan carbohydrate to prevent post-operative infections. In the June/July period, data are expected from The Liposome Co. Inc.'s C-53 liposomal prostaglandin E1 in acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).

"All of these are potential billion dollar markets," Ostro said. "I can't think of another time in this industry when that many huge products were coming to the end of clinical trials."

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