I got several reader questions this week about a new recommendation from Dave Lashmet at Stansberry — it looks like this was issued as a recommendation for regular Stansberry Investment Advisory subscribers, not one of Lashmet’s more expensive biotech-focused newsletters, and it’s very light on clues… but let’s see if we can give you anything helpful to think about.
This is what I’m getting as clues from our readers:
“In this new special report from our biotech expert Dave Lashmet, The Next 4X Jump in Biotech: How to Profit Off the First Potential $1 Trillion Drug Franchise in History, we’re recommending a company that’s developing a drug to potentially treat one of the causes of Alzheimer’s. And in a few years, it could have several other Alzheimer’s drugs, too.
“This biotech company has the first drugs, the most drugs, and the best drugs… And we believe investors today could enjoy returns of 300%.”
So that’s probably not enough in the way of clues for us to give you a definitive answer… but we can sniff around a little.
There are several large pharma companies who are involved in late-stage Alzheimer’s Disease trials, and even a few small ones (though the little guys rarely make it through to Phase 3 or approval on their own). The list of companies that I’ve run across who are either in or close to beginning Phase 3 trials, and therefore could possibly be called “first,” includes…
- Roche’s (RHHBY) gantenerumab (partnered from Morphosys (MOR)) — this one failed in one study in February, but is still in some larger Phase 3 trials that haven’t reported results yet. They’ve also got crenexumab and some other earlier stage drugs in Phase 1 or 2 with an Alzheimer’s focus, though that’s not a huge focus of the company and Roche is gigantic (with a $300 billion market cap), so imagining it providing 300% gains is tough.
- Eisai (ESALY) and Biogen’s (BIIB) BAN2410 and aducanumab, that partnership’s third Phase 3 drug, elenbecestat was halted in Phase 3 for safety last fall
- Eli Lilly and Co. (LLY), whose solanexumab has disappointed with recent “did not meet primary endpoint” results… and while it would be hard to say that’s “the best drug” they do at least have several others in the pipeline in Phase 1 and 2.
- TauRx, which is studying its tau inhibitor LMTX in phase 3 trials… though that’s not a public company.
- AC Immune (ACIU), which is going to have some key data readouts for its several Alzheimer’s drugs this year, most of which are partnered with big players (Genentech ,Janseen, LIlly, etc.), though it would be a stretch to call them “first” since their lead drug, Semorinemab, has yet to begin Phase 3 trials.
- Levetiracetam, an epilepsy drug that’s generically available for that purpose but is being tested in low-dose form for Alzheimer’s by Agenebio (AGB101), though that’s really their only drug in the clinic and they’re tiny and private still, with funding recently coming mostly from grants.
- Amilomotide (CAD106) from Novartis (NVS), which seems to be an immunotherapy for Alzheimer’s — similar to Roche in that it has some appeal, but Novartis is so big that it takes a lot to generate big stock gains and even an appealing Alzheimer’s drug might not bring a 300% return to a $200 billion company.
- Axsome’s (AXSM) AXS-05, which reported some great results this week and saw the shares soar, though that’s another symptom palliative for Alzheimer’s that doesn’t get at the real disease. Their drug is primarily aimed at depression, but also showed good signs of treating agitation in Alzheimer’s Dis
Merck’s (MRK) verubecestat, but that’s pretty much their only Alzheimer’s drug, it has disappointed once already (like Biogen and Lilly)… and they’re huge.