Check-up: Opthea’s one-day gain has them leading the health pack
Health & Biotech
Health & Biotech
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A one-day gain of 148 per cent has Opthea as comfortably the best-performing small cap health or biotech stock on the ASX at a time when the majority are trending downwards.
Stockhead reported today on Opthea’s (ASX:OPT) positive results from its Phase IIb trial of its OPT-302 drug, designed to fight wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
The company’s shares jumped to $1.90, a 148 per cent gain, though they hit as high as $2.25.
The trial examined whether OPT-302, when combined with Lucentis, a standard treatment for wet AMD, achieved a statistically significant vision benefit over patients receiving just Lucentis. It enrolled 366 patients over 24 weeks.
The results were conclusive: patients receiving OPT-302 gained a mean of 14.2 letters of vision from baseline on a standardised eye chart at 24 weeks, compared with 10.8 letters for the control group.
CEO Megan Baldwin told Stockhead the company would now design third-phase studies.
“We’re designing [Phase III] with the input of US regulators, but we can move forward knowing we have good solid data…and sufficient capital to be undertaking these activities,” she said.
The next-best performing health company in the past fortnight was Race Oncology (ASX:RAC), up 40 per cent on news the first leukaemia patient had been treated in its clinical trial of Bisantrene.
Bisantrene is a chemotherapy drug that was the subject of more than 40 clinical studies during the 1980s and 1990s before the drug was abandoned after a series of pharmaceutical mergers.
Overall, the ASX’s near-140 health and biotech stocks have lost 4 per cent in the past fortnight, with 89 stocks losing ground. Only 31 saw gains, while 15 were stable.
Here are the ASX’s near-140 small cap health and biotech stocks and their performance in the past fortnight: