Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Is Bellicum Pharmaceuticals Stock Now a Strong Buy?

By George Budwell – Apr 12, 2018 at 8:47AM

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

Bellicum Pharmaceuticals' lead product candidate is back on track. Should investors buy this news?

What happened

Shares of the clinical-stage cancer immunotherapy company Bellicum Pharmaceuticals (BLCM -1.60%) are up by over 23% in pre-market trading today on heavy volume. What's sparking this double-digit rally?

Bellicum reported after the bell yesterday that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has agreed to lift the clinical hold on its lead product candidate, BPX-501, that's being developed as a treatment for graft-versus-host-disease in patients undergoing allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. The hold did not affect the therapy's ongoing pivotal stage studies in Europe. 

A one dollar bill folded into an upward pointing arrow.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

During its fourth quarter earnings release last month, Bellicum noted that it had already submitted a full response to the FDA regarding this clinical hold stemming from three patients experiencing abnormal brain function after being treated with BPX-501. In yesterday's press release, the company said that the FDA responded by agreeing to an amended study protocol that lays out how patients should be monitored for potential adverse neurological events. 

Now what

Bellicum is now free to restart the therapy's clinical program in the United States. That being said, this small cap biotech is still in desperate need of a sizable cash infusion to keep its controllable cell therapy program on track. Unlike most of its chief competitors, Bellicum has yet to ink a licensing deal that comes with a large upfront cash payment. As a result, the company's long-term financial health remains a huge question mark. 

So, with Bellicum's share price shooting up on the back of this positive regulatory development, there's an awfully good chance the company will take this opportunity to shore up its balance sheet through a fairly large secondary offering (perhaps more than $70 million). The biotech's current cash reserves, after all, arguably aren't enough to last even another twelve months, especially with its BPX-501 program ramping up in the United States. 


George Budwell owns shares of Bellicum Pharmaceuticals. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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

Bellicum Pharmaceuticals Stock Quote
Bellicum Pharmaceuticals
$1.23 (-1.60%) $0.02

*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 10/07/2022.

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.