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A researcher into gene silencing as a technology for improving the lives of those suffering from incurable diseases. Benitec Biopharma is my primary investment in this technology as ddRNAi offers one-time treatments for a broad range of these diseases.
  • Benitec: The Fundamentals Have Not Changed 10 comments
    Apr 30, 2014 11:16 AM | about stocks: BNIKF

    While the Benitec (OTCPK:BNIKF) share price contiunes to slide, it is worth noting that the company fundamentals have not changed. The company has just reported a healthy financial position to the ASX and its pipeline is still targeting major areas of disease.

    It is true that the dosing of the first HCV patient with Benitec's TT-034 drug is taking longer than management led us to believe and that this may be a cause of some of the recent negative sentiment. Providing such misleading information is never a good look for any public company, even if it is unintented. However, in Benitec's defense, I would say that they are being advised by some of the best HCV health professionals at Duke and it would be their advice upon which Benitec give its previous guidance. I suspect that the team at Duke is itself surprised by the delay in filling the first cohort, given their extensive experience in running HCV clinical trials.

    I have previously addressed this issue and so I will not go over old ground.

    With regard to the company fundamentals, the other announcement made to day about presenting to a group of doctors at the request of AstraZeneca shows that the company is still on the radar of big pharma. This presentation gives a good insight into where each of the pipeline programs is at, as well as making a case for ddRNAi in comparison to competitive technologies. A cynic may say that this presentation has been released to try and placate shareholders but I think it is just a normal announcement made to demonstrate that management has several issues on the go and that the company is about more than just TT-034.

    Being in a strong financial position with a healthy pipeline means that Benitec can withstand the current sentiment. The HCV trial will eventually start dosing and the other programs will progress, so I am confident that in the medium and long terms the company will be successful. However, management should learn from their mistakes and do more over delivering and less over promising.

    Disclosure: I am long BNIKF.

    Additional disclosure: This article is not intended as investment advice. All readers should do their own research.

    Themes: Benitec, ddRNAi, TT-034, AstraZeneca, HCV Stocks: BNIKF
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Comments (10)
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  • brama66
    , contributor
    Comments (61) | Send Message
    Great update, Panno. You're spot on. Benitec has the tech, has the pipeline, and has the cash. All the important elements are there. Eventually they WILL dose... and TT-034 will do the rest.
    30 Apr, 12:43 PM Reply Like
  • subrkaus3
    , contributor
    Comments (81) | Send Message
    Panno, I agree to some degree. But i hope Benitec is not rejecting HCV patients when Duke is saying that a person is good for dosing. That is the biggest concern i have now. Duke is a leading trial center and they normally don't put up with nonsense and I hope Benitec is not saying "NO" to patients which Duke says is fine for dosing!
    30 Apr, 03:48 PM Reply Like
  • Pannobhaso
    , contributor
    Comments (107) | Send Message
    Author’s reply » Hi Subrkaus3, I have heard this argument about Benitec rejecting patients endorsed by Duke. Personally, I don't think it makes any sense.


    The trial already has very strict inclusion/exclusion criteria so why would Benitec want to enforce additional criteria which are not published as being part of the FDA approved protocol? It would not be in their best interest. If a patient met all of the criteria, I am sure that they would be accepted into one of the cohorts otherwise, why have the criteria at all?
    Also, why would the company give guidance to the market on dosing if they intended to reject viable patients, especially patients receiving the lowest dose of TT-034 and therefore with the least chance of complications?


    I know we would all like answers but BNIKF rejecting Duke's recommendations is not an answer that has credibility in my opinion. Of course, if anyone has proof that Benitec is doing this, then I will eat my words.
    30 Apr, 10:43 PM Reply Like
  • brama66
    , contributor
    Comments (61) | Send Message
    Panno, is there a way the Q&A from the presentation with AZ can be obtained? Would love to know how the Q&A went.
    30 Apr, 10:00 PM Reply Like
  • Pannobhaso
    , contributor
    Comments (107) | Send Message
    Author’s reply » Being a fly on the wall would have been an interesting place to be.


    As the presentation was a public presentation, even if it had an invited audience only, the company may be willing to share the Q&A information. I'll certainly keep my ear to the ground and see if there are any rumblings.
    30 Apr, 10:48 PM Reply Like
  • ddRNAi works
    , contributor
    Comments (13) | Send Message
    Seriously, we are dealing with a company who just recently spent $240m betting on mRNA (esentially valuing the big pile of dung that is modeRNA at $3b) whose findings have been unable to be replicated by ANYONE. How can they fail to be impressed by shRNA/ddRNAi that not only has been replicated thousands of times, but has been shown to be safe already in over 100 patients. Funnily enough, if AZ do a deal with Benitec, TT-034 may end up back in the laps of Pfizer.
    30 Apr, 11:16 PM Reply Like
  • Pannobhaso
    , contributor
    Comments (107) | Send Message
    Author’s reply » I must admit that I am puzzled as to why AZ would invite the CEO of a company with which they have no relationship to present to a group of doctors a mode of treatment in which AZ is not a major player. What is in it for AZ? I guess all we can do is speculate until we get more news?
    1 May, 03:38 AM Reply Like
  • GrowthGeek
    , contributor
    Comments (898) | Send Message
    The $BNIKF fundamentals have clearly not changed. Irrational fears due to the trial delay has led to a price plunge. Fantastic buying opportunity at $1 per share or less.
    2 May, 05:56 PM Reply Like
  • subrkaus3
    , contributor
    Comments (81) | Send Message
    That's what i did. Added another 10k shares at 94 cents.
    2 May, 08:28 PM Reply Like
  • GreenGrowthGeek
    , contributor
    Comments (637) | Send Message
    Great move Subra. I am over exposed to Benitec at this point so haven't bought more but also have not sold a share at this point either. I agree with my partner in crime that if you have cash available, Benitec is an excellent buy right now as it is oversold.
    2 May, 10:37 PM Reply Like
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