After influential biotech columnist Adam Feuerstein published a bearish article about Corbus Pharmaceuticals Holdings (NASDAQ:CRBP) on TheStreet.com, the company's shares lost 18.5% of their value Tuesday.
Corbus Pharma is conducting a mid-stage study of its lone pipeline candidate, resunab, and results from that study are expected before the end of this quarter.
According to Feuerstein's unnamed short-selling source, those results likely won't pass muster. The article includes commentary that comes directly from his source, and calls into question resunab's long and circuitous path to Corbus Pharma, as well as its poor efficacy in previous pain studies.
This time around, Corbus Pharma isn't evaluating resunab in pain, however, but as a therapy for scleroderma, a tough condition for which there are no approved treatments. Undeniably, there's a big need for effective scleroderma drugs, but Feuerstein's source holds little hope that resunab will be that treatment.
Feuerstein's source leaves the window open (if only by a crack) for a positive study outcome, but he say he's short Corbus Pharma shares ahead of the data read out.
Regardless, investors shouldn't rely on any one source when doing their due diligence. This investor ostensibly doesn't have any inside information about how this trial is actually panning out, and therefore, his conclusions are based on educated guesswork.
While Corbus Pharma shares have shot higher this year, the increase was probably due more to the fact that resunab is derived from marijuana than it was because resunab had a clear path to market. Marijuana stocks have been incredibly volatile because investors are attempting to profit from a rising acceptance of the plant as a medicine; as a result, many marijuana-related stocks have moved up without adequate justification for their valuations.
Overall, Corbus Pharma should be viewed as a high-risk stock. Personally, I have little interest in trying to market time its decline. Instead, I'm focusing on other investment ideas that may offer lesser risks and greater rewards.