The ASX biotech companies that lost puff on Pfizer vaccine news
Health & Biotech
Health & Biotech
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Some ASX biotech companies that were working on COVID-19 treatments saw their share price drop yesterday now that a vaccine is in sight.
Both companies are working on stem cell treatments to treat patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome, a leading cause of death from COVID-19 infections. Mesoblast said last month that over 150 ventilator-dependent patients had been enrolled in a US trial of its remestemcel-L treatment, while Cynata in August began enrollment in its MEND (MEseNchymal coviD-19) trial.
Also falling on a day when the market was generally rising:
– Noxopharm (ASX:NOX) dropped 3.7 per cent to 52c. The Sydney biotech announced on Thursday that a safety steering committee in the Republic of Moldova had cleared another 12 patients to be treated with its immono-oncology drug Veyonda, after the first six patients apparently suffered no ill effects.
– CSL (ASX:CSL) slid 0.1 per cent to $304.60. The company, Australia’s largest, on Monday began manufacturing doses of a different vaccine, the University of Oxford/AstraZeneca candidate known as AZD1222. The Federal Government is paying the company to make the shot as part of a $1.7 billion deal announced in September.
– Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (ASX:FPH) dropped 12.1 per cent to $30.37, although their shares are still up 44 per cent year-to-date. The Kiwi respiratory care company has seen strong sales in part because its products have been used to treat COVID-19 patients.
– Sonic Healthcare (ASX:SHL) fell 5.9 per cent to $34.60. The company is one of the world’s largest pathology companies and has been involved in testing for COVID-19 patients.
– Ansell (ASX:ANN) dropped 9.5 per cent to $38.82. The glovemaker in August reported full-year sales were up 7.7 per cent in part because of pandemic-related demand.
Overall the All Ordinaries index was up 0.43 per cent and the ASX200 up 0.7 per cent following Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX) announcing their mRNA-based vaccine candidate has been more than 90 per cent effective in preventing coronavirus infections in a clinical trial involving 43,538 participants.
So far 94 participants have been infected with the novel coronavirus; the trial will continue until 164 confirmed COVID-19 cases have accrued.