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Biotech/ Pharma News Digest (August 31): New Trade Alert For Today...

We provide this news digest as an added feature of our premium research service. Subscribers can use this news digest to capture a snapshot of the day's key events in the sector. Some of these events also give us ideas for future investments.

Macroeconomic data:

ADP employment report was positive today but Chicago PMI dropped. Monthly PMI manufacturing index and ISM manufacturing index (both for August) will be reported tomorrow. A drop in manufacturing activity (below 50) has been seen in past economic recessions.

S&P 500 Index trend: subscribers to premium research only.

Biotech/ Pharma sector news:

Cynapsus Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CYNA), a company with a therapy for 'OFF' symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD) agreed to be acquired for $40/share. This company has been on our watch-list but had a decent run-up in the stock price recently already.

This acquisition highlights the importance of therapies in this area (treatment of 'OFF' symptoms in this disease. One of the open positions in our portfolio, Acorda Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ACOR) has a product candidate in this area. A detailed report on this company is available here. Another open position, Adamas Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ADMS) has a long-acting form of amantadine under development for treating levodopa-induced dyskinesia but also is likely to reduce 'OFF' time in PD. Our analysis for this company can be read here.

Mannkind (NASDAQ:MNKD) shares were up today after news of a generic alternative to Mylan's (NASDAQ:MYL) Epipen. We are not very optimistic about big market potential for Mannkind's inhaled insulin and are avoiding this company.

CAR-T stocks like Juno (NASDAQ:JUNO) and Adaptimmune (NASDAQ:ADAP) were down today after news that Novartis (NYSE:NVS) has decided to dissolve its cell and gene therapy unit. However, Novartis which is one of top three CAR-T companies will continue existing CAR-T program including its key pediatric acute lymphocytic leukemia (NYSE:ALL) program. We consider this an over-reaction to this news, largely exacerbated by recent news of patients deaths in a trial being conducted by Juno Therapeutics. We maintain bullish view on CAR-T therapy's potential in treatment of refractory hematological cancers.

Transaction Alert: new position added today. Company has significant recent insider buying and trades at market cap less than cash. Product pipeline is impressive (exclusive to subscribers of premium research service).

Updated analysis, Cempra (NASDAQ:CEMP):

We published an updated research report on Cempra, one of the portfolio open positions today, exclusively for subscribers (with updated valuation, fair value/ share and spreadsheets. The research report can be accessed at this link.

Disclosure: This article represents my own opinion and is not a substitute for professional investment advice. It does not represent solicitation to buy or sell any security. Investors should do their own research and consult their financial advisor before making any investment.

Disclosure: I am/we are long JUNO, ADAP, ADMS, ACOR, CEMP.