Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Why bluebird bio Inc. Jumped Again Today

By Brian Orelli, PhD – Sep 15, 2016 at 4:31PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Goldman Sachs likes the biotech's prospects.

Image source: Getty Images.

What happened

bluebird bio (BLUE 0.93%) continues its flight upward. Monday it advanced on no apparent news, and it's up 11.5% today as of 3:45 p.m. EDT. Today's move at least has some news tied to it; Goldman Sachs put the company on its "Americas Conviction List."

So what

The opinion of one investment bank really shouldn't matter all that much, but investors have been leery of Bluebird since it topped out last year. The biotech will take any additional vote of confidence it can get.

BLUE Chart

BLUE data by YCharts.

Investors soured on Bluebird after its gene therapy LentiGlobin went from apparently curing everyone -- where "everyone" was defined as a handful of patients -- to not curing everyone -- defined as slightly more than a handful of patients.

More specifically, LentiGlobin appeared not to work in some harder-to-treat patients with a blood disorder called beta thalassemia, or in some patients with sickle-cell disease. The company hypothesized that increasing the average number of copies of the gene added per cell would increase expression of the protein, and therefore increase the cure rate.

Last week, Bluebird said it had figured out a way to increase the copy number, and started a clinical trial using the new process.

Now what

It'll be a while before we have clinical data on whether the new manufacturing process produces a higher cure rate, but we may get some data on the manufacturing process -- copy number, expression levels, etc. -- at the American Society of Hematology meeting in early December. That data could provide even more confidence that Bluebird is on its way back toward the highs set last year.

Brian Orelli has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Bluebird Bio. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Bluebird Bio Stock Quote
Bluebird Bio
$7.59 (0.93%) $0.07

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
S&P 500 Returns

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 11/28/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.