December 12, 2013 / Investing in the stock market takes a calibrated eye to maximize returns. The biotechnology sector has proven time and again to deliver the type of returns that shareholders dream of, but it’s not simply a shell game of hoping to make the right guess. Savvy investors are attuned to several catalytic denominators in successful biotechnology companies, namely potential market size and disruptive technologies. A recent article titled, “Can I Retire on a Biotech Stock?” discusses the robust returns of companies like Pharmasset, Inc. (formerly VRUS before an $11-billion acquisition by Gilead Sciences (GILD) and Pharmacyclics, Inc. (PCYC) over only a few years and details the potential of the cellulose-based, live-cell encapsulation technology, also known as Cell-in-a-Box(TM), acquired by Nuvilex, Inc. (NVLX). Nuvilex’s assets have been proven in both preclinical and clinical studies to be a platform for developing formidable novel treatments for costly - and deadly - diseases such as cancer and diabetes, giving the company early stage potential that parallels majors at similar stages of development.
An excerpt from an article on the potential uses of the Cell-in-a-Box™ technology discussed the results of a clinical trial in which the effectiveness of the combination of the well-known cancer prodrug ifosfamide plus encapsulated cells capable of converting ifosfamide into its cancer killing form in treating patients with advanced, inoperable pancreatic cancer was compared to the effectiveness of Eli Lilly’s (LLY) Gemzar (gemcitabine), the only single-agent drug with FDA approval for this indication. The conclusions made in the article were:
"Upon completion of the trial, when the data are compared to historical data (results from Gemzar’s pivotal Phase 3 trial that were used to obtain FDA approval and that are part of the prescribing information for the drug) for the efficacy of Gemzar, the researchers discovered that patients receiving the encapsulation/ifosfamide therapy had a median survival of 11 months, compared to only 5.7 months for gemcitabine. The one-year survival rate was doubled from 18% for Gemzar alone to 36% for encapsulation/ifosfamide-treated patients. Tumor growth was stabilized in all 14 patients, including a reduction in tumor volumes of between 25 and 50 percent in four patients. Importantly, where there were severe side effects in patients treated with Gemzar, there were no severe side effects in patients treated with the live-cell encapsulation/ifosfamide combination, likely because the dosing level of ifosfamide was greatly reduced compared to what is usually used when patients are treated with this anti-cancer drug."
The article also took a look at research using the cellulose-based live-cell encapsulation technology that demonstrates its potential use for the development of treatments for other serious indications, such as breast cancer and diabetes. The analysis includes:
a) For breast cancer, in studies using mammary tumors in dogs (a model for breast cancer in humans) where the combination of the widely used breast cancer prodrug cyclophosphamide plus encapsulated cells capable of converting the cyclophosphamide into its cancer-killing form was compared to cyclophosphamide alone (the control arm of the study), "The results showed significant reductions in tumor volumes in the dogs whose tumors were implanted with the encapsulated cells and then treated with cyclophosphamide compared to the control arm. Even more amazing, one animal, which had two tumors, had one tumor treated with the encapsulated cells while the other tumor was not. Cyclophosphamide therapy followed per protocol, with the encapsulated-cell-treated tumor shrinking by 70%, versus only 14% for the non-encapsulated-cell-treated tumor."
b) For diabetes, in preclinical studies where diabetic animals were implanted with encapsulated insulin-producing cells, "This ‘proof of principle’ research showed that, shortly after implantation of the encapsulated insulin-producing cells, blood glucose levels became normal and stayed normal for extended periods of time. The capsules protected the cells within them from immune system attack making the use of immunosuppressive drugs unnecessary. In one six-month study, when diabetic animals were implanted with encapsulated insulin-producing cells, the blood glucose levels in the animals became normalized and remained that way for the duration of the study. At the end of the study, the capsules were found to be intact and the cells were still functioning. In other words, the insulin-producing cells were still capable of producing insulin in response to elevated levels of glucose in their surroundings."
Investors performing their due diligence on biotechnology companies are encouraged to read the complete article to learn much more about the ground floor opportunity of Nuvilex and their potentially revolutionary treatments that are indicated for areas of great unmet medical need.
The complete Nuvilex (NVLX) article can be viewed at: http://www.baystreet.ca/articles/stockstowatch.aspx?id=687
BayStreet Media Corp.
Disclaimer: BayStreet.ca has been compensated five thousand and five hundred dollars by a non-affiliated third-party for its efforts in presenting the NVLX article on its web site and distributing it to its database of subscribers as well as other services. A full disclaimer on NVLX can be found at: http://www.baystreet.ca/articles.aspx?id=25011
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