Pannobhaso's  Instablog

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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.
  • Do Your Own Due Diligence  6 comments
    Jun 28, 2014 6:23 AM | about stocks: BNIKF, BTEBY

    A Twitter post about Benitec directed me to this website where the company CEO is responding to claims made by a poster on another discussion board.

    I do not want to buy in to the arguments per se but the fact that the CEO feels he needs to respond shows how important it is that all shareholders and would be shareholders do their own due diligence before making decisions about their portfolio.

    In my opinion, authors equally have an obligation to publish and substantiate claims of fact and make it clear when they are expressing opinion. This is a standard that, as an author myself, I try to uphold. However, I still encourage all readers to follow up on the reference material to which I refer in my articles and judge its merits for themselves, rather than just relying on my interpretation.

    Even though long term holders of the stock believe in the potential of the company, we must all remember that it is still a high risk/high reward investment. The technology is yet to be proven to be efficacious in humans and, until it is proven, there will always be claims and counter claims about its benefits and how best to exploit them. Let's face it, if the big pharmas believed Benitec's marketing material they would all be falling over themselves trying to buy the technology. But they are not, which simply proves my point that, until ddRNAi is proven to work, everyone will just have an opinion on it.

    The latest news on Calimmune was welcome but not unexpected. The next stage is obviously to establish efficacy. Typically this will rely on the degree of ex vivo transduction of the target cells by the vector. In some good news released this week, other scientists claim to have discovered a way to substantially increase the transduction percentage for gene therapies targeting blood borne disease. If this is correct, then even if the current trial does not show a significant reduction in viral load after treatment with Cal-1, all is not lost as the team may be able to take advantage of this new development.

    With regard to TT-034, the first patient is still a week or two away from their safety assessment leading to the second patient being dosed. I would caution against expecting too much by way of news or results from this first patient. A sample of one does not tell us much, one way or the other.

    I believe that in the next twelve months we are going to be very pleased with the developments in Benitec. It will be a very busy year, one in which the CEO and all the staff need to focus on clinical trials and advancing the technology with a view to increasing shareholder value. As such, it is a real pity, in my opinion, that the CEO has to be diverted from this task in order to respond to communications which he believes to be inaccurate and of danger to investors. Hopefully, this will be the last time he does so and hopefully he does not feel that he has to take me to task for the same reason.

    Stocks: BNIKF, BTEBY
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Comments (6)
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  • jsiebel720
    , contributor
    Comments (244) | Send Message
    TY for terrific update & link to CEO's response. Doing your own DD is 1st rule of investing, not speculating. Its tragic that this rule falls on deaf ears all too often.
    28 Jun 2014, 08:07 AM Reply Like
  • brama66
    , contributor
    Comments (176) | Send Message
    Glad to see you still posting, Panno. If anything else came out of French's response, it is a greater confidence in the knowledge and leadership ability of Benitec's management team. Next July will be very interesting indeed.
    28 Jun 2014, 11:53 AM Reply Like
  • Pannobhaso
    , contributor
    Comments (245) | Send Message
    Author’s reply » Brama, I agree with you. I just hope that Peter's response is the end of the matter. I would hate for this to turn in to a need to constantly be quashing misinformation.
    28 Jun 2014, 01:08 PM Reply Like
  • brama66
    , contributor
    Comments (176) | Send Message
    I think this will be the end for most of it. Patients have been dosed, timelines have been clearly laid out, and more positive data from Calimmune and others keeps coming...even no adverse effects from TT-034 so far. Benitec is in a new phase, one where the theory of their tech cannot be argued so much, because the actual trial data is now there. Proof of concept is now being tested and demonstrated, and those facts will clearly squash conjecture.
    29 Jun 2014, 11:09 AM Reply Like
  • GrowthGeek
    , contributor
    Comments (3095) | Send Message
    Dr. KSS has brought many investors to Benitec including this one, but he has recently soured a bit especially after the failure to launch on the first patient dosed in the current trial. He remains long but has changed his opinion from a pretty strong buy to more of a hold at this point. His scientific acumen is superb and he believes in the the science. He is less than enthusiastic regarding the management at this point and continues to voice several concerns including that there are no medical doctors on the current management team.
    I remain long Benitec and see it as an excellent value at this point especially when comparing the market cap of comparable companies.
    I can understand that Dr. French might be frustrated in who he views as an anonymous blogger, but I don't think it is wise to pick a fight with Dr. KSS. It would be nice to see some alliances and bridges being built at this point. I'm not sure that either man's ego will allow that which is unfortunate.
    1 Jul 2014, 03:22 PM Reply Like
  • Pannobhaso
    , contributor
    Comments (245) | Send Message
    Author’s reply » Hi GrowthGeek,


    With the limited funding that was available to the company it was not possible to employ a legion of staff. Since the recent capital raising Benitec has appointed a Chief Medical Officer and so this is now a mute point.


    With regard to KSS and Peter French, I am not in a position to comment. I do not follow Gumshoe and so I can only address remarks that others make re posts on that board if they are repeated here on SA.
    1 Jul 2014, 10:38 PM Reply Like
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