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12:00 AM
 | 
Jul 06, 2009
 |  BioCentury  |  Finance

3rd Quarter Stock Preview: Making the Milestone

Buysiders expect the summer months, as always, to be a little light on events. While some are hoping for a few dramatic upside moves among some neglected small caps, most buysiders were hesitant to disclose their picks as they remain on the sidelines or are in the midst of accumulating shares in very illiquid stocks.

"Usually 4Q is much more important than 3Q, as most healthcare conferences take place at that time and it is the presentation of results that moves stock prices, especially in the small and mid-cap area," Julius Baer's Nathalie Flury told BioCentury (see "2H09 Milestones," A9).

Both Kurt von Emster of venBio and IBT's David Pinniger are watching the trio of small cap obesity companies that will hit milestones in 3Q: Orexigen Therapeutics Inc.; Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Vivus Inc. The first two will report Phase III data for Contrave and lorcaserin, their respective obesity compounds, while Vivus is expected to submit an NDA for phentermine/topiramate before year end.

von Emster thinks Orexigen shares could move from around $3 to the high single digits on positive data. In previous testing, Contrave was plagued by a high placebo response. He expects that to be much less the case this time around. "You're looking at a $125 million market cap company with $75 million in cash," he added.

von Emster also sees ARYx Therapeutics Inc. as "interesting from the value inflection point...

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