Why Vaxart Shares Are Soaring Today
Actions of the vaccine developer at the clinical stage Vaxart (NASDAQ: VXRT) are up again today, gaining 12.34% to $ 9.83 each as of 2:30 p.m. EDT. The stock has risen 21% in the past five trading days due to increased capital inflows after the company reported encouraging second quarter results on August 5.
Vaxart managed to raise $ 36.2 million in the quarter by issuing new shares, bringing its cash balance to $ 177.3 million. That’s pretty big for a company with a market capitalization just north of $ 1 billion. In addition, the company has received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to proceed to Phase 2 clinical trials for its investigational oral coronavirus vaccine.
The vaccine failed to induce noticeable neutralizing antibody levels in Phase 1, leading many investors to abandon the stock. But Vaxart is far from a one-ride pony. With solid funding, the company can diversify its pipeline into other areas to fill its coronavirus deficit. After the second quarter, Vaxart signed a worldwide licensing agreement with Altesa Biosciences for its investigational antiviral Vapendavir. If approved, Vaxart could receive up to $ 130 million in pre-royalty milestone payments. In addition, he is also conducting a placebo-controlled booster study to test his norovirus vaccine candidate.
Small-cap biotech is still down nearly 60% from its February highs ahead of the release of clinical data on its coronavirus vaccine candidate. The company still has a slew of unresolved corporate issues, such as a federal investigation for misrepresenting its role in Operation Warp Speed. In addition, even if approved, its coronavirus vaccine candidate becomes redundant due to an oversupply of authorized vaccines in the country. As a result, I would be careful not to get too excited about the potential of biotechnology.
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