As COVID-19 continues to dominate headlines and upset markets around the world, some companies are working around the clock to develop treatments and even cures for the deadly virus. One such company is Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:INO).
Inovio is a biotechnology company that specializes in quickly bringing cures for infectious diseases to market. It has already developed medicines to treat HPV and certain cancers and is working on a host of treatments for other diseases, including Zika, MERS, and COVID-19.
Today, Rich profiles this exciting company, its recent performance, and how it is poised to be one of the biggest coronavirus plays of the year.
Inovio Pharmaceuticals Accelerates Timeline for COVID-19 DNA Vaccine
Per a press release published yesterday, the company announced it is hurrying its coronavirus treatment to market. According to the WHO, approximately 89,000 people around the world have been diagnosed with the virus, and more than 3,000 people have died.
Inovio’s President and CEO, Dr. J. Joseph Kim, says that the company plans to begin human clinical trials in April. These trials will start in the US and then extend to China and South Korea, where the outbreak is most dire.
Kim added that the company has the resources to deliver “one million doses” by the end of 2020. Additional resources will be needed to ensure there are enough doses to protect all Americans, however.
“This is huge news,” says Rich. “These guys need to be on full alert because they’re potentially finding a cure for corona. That’s why the stock is screaming.”
INO’s Performance and Upcoming Earnings Report
Since announcing the accelerated timeline, INO jumped from $4.39 to $8.30. That’s nearly 90% growth in less than a day and a half!
The stock was already up thanks to coronavirus fears, which have been boosting similar biotech companies. This includes Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD), which recently claimed a spot on Rich’s list of top ten stocks to watch in March 2020.
Inovio Pharmaceuticals entered 2020 at $3.71 and by March 2 had already risen 18.3%.
The company will release its earnings report for the fourth quarter of 2019 next Thursday, March 12. This quarter won’t include INO’s recent performance, but management will likely discuss it as part of a general corporate update.
Racing for a COVID-19 Cure
Dr. Kim announced the accelerated vaccine timeline at a White House meeting of pharma and biotech companies. While Inovio Pharmaceuticals has a clear road map for production and distribution, other companies still might be able to get to market first.
AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) has a drug called Kaletra that is already being administered to coronavirus-affected patients in China. In addition, the previously mentioned Gilead recently initiated two Phase III studies to evaluate its vaccine candidate remdesivir.
Still, INO was able to devise its treatment just three hours after the publication of the genetic sequence of COVID-19. That’s an impressive accomplishment and an indication that this might be the company to watch in the coming weeks and months.
What do you think? Is Inovio Pharmaceuticals the best coronavirus play? And if so, is there still time to get in? Let us know your thoughts!
Featured image: DepositPhotos © Esbenklinker