Smart money is betting on Neurocrine Biosciences (NASDAQ:NBIX) and shares are on the move as investors and others have begun to take notice.
Earlier in the week, there was a substantial insider buy placed by Mark N. Lampert of the BioTechnology Value Fund, LP and his buying activity put shares on the higher end of the tight trading range that had been in play for NBIX shares since August. Shares of NBIX closed at $6.42+0.39 (up 6.47%) on Thursday after we told our premium subscribers that continued volume might push the stock higher.
As it stands, shares broke out of their trading range after closing above the 50-day moving average on Wednesday. In addition, Roberto Pedone of StockPickr published his own article on Thursday afternoon pointing to the potential upside for NBIX at these levels. From a purely technical standpoint, the stock is not set to run into considerable resistance until the $7.85 mark (see chart below for notes).
Shares are still trading at a -30.97 % discount from their 52-Wk High ($ 9.30) with 76.30% of the company's shares owned by institutions.
Neurocrine Biosciences Inc is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative pharmaceutical products to treat unmet medical needs. The firm's research and development efforts are focused on neurological and endocrine diseases and disorders. Its product candidates address some of the largest pharmaceutical markets including endometriosis, anxiety, depression, pain, diabetes, benign prostatic hyperplasis, irritable bowel syndrome and other neurological and endocrine related diseases and disorders.
Neurocrine's product pipeline includes: GnRH Antagonist, a peptide that stimulates the secretion of the pituitary hormones indicated for the treatment of endocrine related conditions such as endometriosis, uterine fibroids, benign prostatic hyperplasia and oncology indications; NBI-98854 - Vesicular Monoamine Transporter 2 Inhibitor (VMAT2), a protein concentrated in the human brain indicated for the management of hyperkinetic movement disorders in patients suffering from Tardive Dyskinesia, Huntington's disease and Schizophrenia; Urocortin 2 indicated for the treatment of Congestive Heart Failure; etc.
On Tuesday Oct 4th, Neurocrine announced that it had received a $20 million milestone payment from development partner Abbott Laboratories for the gynecological drug candidate elagolix. The companies are developing elagolix as a treatment for pain associated with endometriosis, a condition in which a tissue similar to the uterine lining is found outside of the uterus, such as on the ovaries. The condition can cause pelvic pain and infertility. Neurocrine said it has received $30 million in milestone payments in the third quarter.
A look at the BioMedReports FDA Calendar and Worldwide Regulatory Tracker shows that Neurocrine officials are anticipating Elagolix Phase III trials for endometriosis which are planned to start "in the fourth quarter of 2011." That entry on the calendar was sourced from a company press release dated May 3rd, 2011. There is an additional catalyst pending for the company which is scheduled for Q1 of 2012.
If you're the type who likes to follow insider money into trades, then you should know that Biotechnology Value Fund Partners LP (BVF Partners LP) is a private investment partnership founded in 1993 by President and Portfolio Manager Mark Lampert. Lampert was once Vice President at Oppenheimer & Co. where he created various biotechnology investment vehicles. Mr. Lampert also founded Biotechnology Royalty Corp, which pooled university patent royalties, prior to joining Oppenheimer.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.