Seeking Alpha

Stan The Man

 
View as an RSS Feed
View Stan The Man's Comments BY TICKER:
Latest  |  Highest rated
  • Organovo: Competition And Profit Potential [View article]
    See my comment above on Inspiro vs. ONVO
    Oct 7, 2014. 11:36 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Organovo: Competition And Profit Potential [View article]
    Seems to me if Inspiro was so great vs. the ONVO product, Roche would not be trumpeting the results of its recent back checking work with ONVO.

    I don't pretend to know the details. But here's a thought. Lets assume both these products were backtested with a number of compounds that subsequently failed because of adverse liver toxicity. Hypothetically, if one product predicted liver toxicity in 75% of these compounds later found to have adverse liver toxicity, and the other product predicted liver toxicity in 90% of such compounds, would anyone care if the 90% predictor cost 10 times as much? Would anyone buy the 75% predictor product to save $100,000 at the risk of wasting $$millions on development work on this compound? That would be stupid.

    So if the ONVO product demonstrates superior liver toxicity predictability, it can command a hefty $$$ premium price. And if the Inspiro product is so good, why are they charging so little?
    Oct 7, 2014. 11:31 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Organovo: Competition And Profit Potential [View article]
    It looks to me like the liver product will "succeed" but its not going to make the company a giant moneymaker by itself, and it won't be adopted by everyone on day one. The point is that this will be a start, and a good one, and there are tons of opportunities for the company in the liver area as well as other areas.
    Sep 30, 2014. 12:20 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Organovo: Competition And Profit Potential [View article]
    Congrats on the article! I listened to the conference call and came away energized by the possibilities and the way the company is moving forward. I believe the text of the call is still available for anyone interested.

    The thrust of the message was that the technology works to make better (3D) tissues for drug development testing, and there is tremendous interest in this from big pharma. An interesting note was that there are generally few if any regulatory approvals needed for the company to market its products to pharma for drug development study. That's because the ONVO products are generally not used to prove the safety or efficacy of products, but rather to help big pharma screen their products for toxicity at an early stage and in a cost effective way. If a Roche or other big company learns early that a potential drug has adverse liver toxicity, it can save enormous amounts of money by not moving forward to formal testing of that product.

    ONVO is just at the beginning of commercializing its technology, but the results thus far have been excellent, and the potential upside is huge.
    Sep 29, 2014. 05:31 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Advanced Cell Technology And Dilution: Do We Really Have A Rational Choice? [View article]
    A vote for increasing authorized shares is not the same as voting for dilution. Having the shares authorized gives the company flexibility to use the shares but that doesn't mean they will use them. It just means they feel the need to keep their options open. And if they do use them, and use them wisely, existing shareholders will benefit.

    In my opinion, the constant harping about the risk of dilution is misplaced. Just like the previous and continuing harping about the supposed negative effects of a reverse stock split. This company has a continuing need to raise cash to fund future development -- just like any early stage biotech company which will probably not be generating revenues soon. Would anyone seriously quarrel with a scenario where (a) the Phase 1 results get published soon, (b) the stock shoots up to $30 or more, and (c) the company sells some shares at $30 to raise cash? That cash could presumably fund operations while the next steps are taken that could drive the stock higher. The concern would not be the sale of shares, per se, but the price and timing of any sale.

    The company will need to raise cash eventually, either through partnering or by selling shares, but hopefully they will wait until the stock price is much higher. In any case, they need to get this shareholder authorization. A negative vote would not be a plus for shareholders, it would just make it harder for the company to raise cash.
    Sep 29, 2014. 03:59 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Repudiation Of Advanced Cell Technology's 'Whisper' Results [View article]
    Selling the rallies and buying the troughs works great when a stock trades in a channel. But stocks like this have been known to go up 400% in a day. Selling the first 20% gain makes you feel sick when the stock continues to go up while you are waiting for your next chance to buy at the bottom of the channel.

    Of course this pattern could persist and your strategy might work for you. But I think that strategy is best suited to trading a stock that is stuck in a range, not a stock that is awaiting events that could make it skyrocket.
    Sep 24, 2014. 10:40 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Repudiation Of Advanced Cell Technology's 'Whisper' Results [View article]
    Doug:

    While I agree with some of the things you say, especially your critique of this article, your comment that the stock is "right back to where it should be" assumes you somehow have the insight to know this. I think that viewpoint is nonsense.

    When the stock gets to $50 on this upcoming article, what will it mean that you believed the "right price" pre-article was $7.92 instead of $9.00 or some different number? Precisely nothing.

    My average cost was also around $7.00 but I've been buying more on the way down since around $8.70. That doesn't mean I know what the "right price" should be, but it shows that I'm doing the only relevant thing, voting now with my dollars.

    Since the stock traded around these prices this summer, the company has (1) settled their lawsuit relating to prior financing, (2) settled with SEC regarding the previous President's stock sales, (3) received a patent to commercially produce stem cells which sounds like it might be important, (4) completed the reverse stock split previously approved, and which was a precondition to uplifting to NASDAQ, and (5) created a top notch Scientific Advisory Board, demonstrating these well regarded scientists are believers. And the peer-reviewed paper describing their AMD trials -- previously discussed by the company at the latest investor day as expected shortly -- is that much closer to being published.

    To me, those developments justify a higher valuation than was put on this during the summer. That's why I've been buying more.
    Sep 23, 2014. 03:47 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Report: Apple shutting down Beats Music (updated) [View news story]
    Regarding the 10 million number... (1) Does it include resales by ATT and other vendors or only represent direct sales by Apple, and (2) Has Apple announced how many more have been ordered that are awaiting delivery? I ordered an iPhone 6+ at ATT the first day and their estimated delivery date is still early November (!).
    Sep 22, 2014. 04:20 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Repudiation Of Advanced Cell Technology's 'Whisper' Results [View article]
    Here is the abstract of the paper from 2012 in Lancet (of a study funded by ACT)

    //////////

    The Lancet, Volume 379, Issue 9817, Pages 713 - 720, 25 February 2012 <Previous Article|Next Article>
    doi:10.1016/S0140-6736... or Link Using DOI
    This article can be found in the following collections: Cardiology & Vascular Medicine (Cardiology & vascular-other)
    Published Online: 24 January 2012
    Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.
    Embryonic stem cell trials for macular degeneration: a preliminary report

    Prof Steven D Schwartz MD a Corresponding AuthorEmail Address, Jean-Pierre Hubschman MD a, Gad Heilwell MD a, Valentina Franco-Cardenas MD a, Carolyn K Pan MD a, Rosaleen M Ostrick MPH a, Edmund Mickunas MS b, Roger Gay PhD b, Irina Klimanskaya PhD b, Dr Robert Lanza MD b Corresponding AuthorEmail Address
    Summary

    Background
    It has been 13 years since the discovery of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). Our report provides the first description of hESC-derived cells transplanted into human patients.
    Methods
    We started two prospective clinical studies to establish the safety and tolerability of subretinal transplantation of hESC-derived retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) in patients with Stargardt's macular dystrophy and dry age-related macular degeneration—the leading cause of blindness in the developed world. Preoperative and postoperative ophthalmic examinations included visual acuity, fluorescein angiography, optical coherence tomography, and visual field testing. These studies are registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, numbers NCT01345006 and NCT01344993.
    Findings
    Controlled hESC differentiation resulted in greater than 99% pure RPE. The cells displayed typical RPE behaviour and integrated into the host RPE layer forming mature quiescent monolayers after transplantation in animals. The stage of differentiation substantially affected attachment and survival of the cells in vitro after clinical formulation. Lightly pigmented cells attached and spread in a substantially greater proportion (>90%) than more darkly pigmented cells after culture. After surgery, structural evidence confirmed cells had attached and continued to persist during our study. We did not identify signs of hyperproliferation, abnormal growth, or immune mediated transplant rejection in either patient during the first 4 months. Although there is little agreement between investigators on visual endpoints in patients with low vision, it is encouraging that during the observation period neither patient lost vision. Best corrected visual acuity improved from hand motions to 20/800 (and improved from 0 to 5 letters on the Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study [ETDRS] visual acuity chart) in the study eye of the patient with Stargardt's macular dystrophy, and vision also seemed to improve in the patient with dry age-related macular degeneration (from 21 ETDRS letters to 28).
    Interpretation
    The hESC-derived RPE cells showed no signs of hyperproliferation, tumorigenicity, ectopic tissue formation, or apparent rejection after 4 months. The future therapeutic goal will be to treat patients earlier in the disease processes, potentially increasing the likelihood of photoreceptor and central visual rescue.
    Funding
    Advanced Cell Technology.
    Sep 22, 2014. 12:10 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Repudiation Of Advanced Cell Technology's 'Whisper' Results [View article]
    As noted in my previous post, above, there has been extensive coverage in the UK about a man treated successfully for Stargardt's disease, a genetic form of macular degeneration that strikes young people. I just looked again on Google, and found multiple articles from 2012 and 2013 on this man (named Marcus Hilton, from Wakefield, UK), aged 34 in 2012. There is even a video of him puttering around his kitchen and making himself coffee, with no apparent visual disability. He reportedly started losing his eyesight at age 7 and was diagnosed with Stargardt's at age 10.

    One of the press articles refers to a report of the work published in Lancet, presumably in the 2012-2013 timeframe. Anyone know about that paper?
    Sep 22, 2014. 12:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Repudiation Of Advanced Cell Technology's 'Whisper' Results [View article]
    Seems to me like a jargon-filled hatchet job, by a commentator (1) not technically trained to evaluate opthalmology procedures and studies, (2) citing one 2009 article which may or may not be relevant, and (3) relying on one patient's son's supposedly accurate Facebook post?

    What about the 40-something-year-old British Stargards patient who recovered his eyesight through this stem cell therapy (the one that we know about so far through extensive media coverage)? Was his retina restored by removing a cataract as well?

    Seems counterintuitive that AMD has persisted as a major cause of blindness for so many people, if the "cure" for the condition is cataract surgery. To say the least. That proposition sounds to me stupid beyond belief.

    Lets give Dr. Lanza, and the panel of ophthalmologists involved in this trial, and the new Scientific Board the company just created, credit for knowing more about this than the poster. And lets not forget this Phase I study was not designed to prove the efficacy of the therapy, but rather to test and prove safety. If the results are sufficiently good to also show efficacy as well, that would be wonderful.

    As to the future capital needs of the company, that could be said as well about every single company doing a Phase I study that doesn't already have a product for sale. All today's giant success stories were there once as well. Regeneron, for example. The fact that they raised capital did not diminish the astronomical returns eventually delivered to investors who stayed the course.

    Every time I read some misguided post on Yahoo or Seeking Alpha that bashes this company without any new or real basis (like previous hysterical anti-stock-split posts), I wonder why these bashers don't just go away if they dislike this investment? JMY Investments doesn't give a name but describes himself as handling family investments with a "value" orientation. Huh? Just go away if you don't like the company's prospects. This company won't be paying a dividend anytime soon.

    We should know very soon now (the company has said by year end, I think) what the study results actually say. The company has traded mostly around 7 cents the past year ($7.00 post split) but lately has pushed up from there a bit. If the study results are as hoped the stock will FLY. Anyone who sells at $8 will be kicking himself when the stock goes straight up to $40 or $50 on good results.
    Sep 20, 2014. 04:32 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Update: Advanced Cell Technology Conference Call [View article]
    They still need to get shareholder approval again if they don't do it before September 14. Too bad. Seems like they could have just made that date later the first time and not needed to spend money on it again.
    Aug 14, 2014. 10:56 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Update: Advanced Cell Technology Conference Call [View article]
    I liked the fact that Dr. Lanza was on the call, and I found his comments encouraging. When the Phase I results are finally reported, he could make the rounds of the talk shows and become (more of) a worldwide celebrity.
    Aug 12, 2014. 02:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How To Value Advanced Cell Technology As A Phase II Company [View article]
    I was glad they scheduled that call.

    Granted there was nothing new, but it was nice to hear Dr. Lanza talk encouragingly about the company's technology and make the points that the applications are limitless but that the immediate focus on AMD and Stargards addresses a huge market, a way to generate some early profits, and a strategic way to demonstrate the technology with regard to a safer entry point (eyes) to the body. (At least that was my takeaway from what he said.)
    Aug 12, 2014. 10:42 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How To Value Advanced Cell Technology As A Phase II Company [View article]
    You state:

    "What this means is that, unless some majority shareholder(s) could be found, no reasonable company is going to attempt to buy ACT outright because they would have to do so on the open market, and that effort would face constantly diminishing return on investment. The only remaining option is to cut a deal whereby ACT gives the rights to all or a portion of its future sales in return for capital and other help in bringing its stem cell treatment to market. So for example, if that wound up being 50/50, we would only expect ACTC shares to be worth about 75 cents each."

    //////

    I'd be happy with "only" 75 cents a share, but your comment ignores that giving up 50% of the future sales would require that the acquiring company pay ACTC something good. They wouldn't give them those revenues for nothing. So using your methodology, ACTC would be worth (a) 75 cents PLUS (b) the value of what they got for selling half their income and revenue stream. Maybe that wouldn't be $1.50 (using your number) but it would be something significantly more than 75 cents.
    Aug 7, 2014. 05:36 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
COMMENTS STATS
154 Comments
397 Likes