Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Emergent BioSolutions (NYSE: EBS) surged 20% Thursday after the biotech company said the U.S. government intends to buy 44.75 million doses of its BioThrax anthrax vaccine.

So what: For a company with a market cap of less than $1 billion, the contract -- in which it will be the government's "sole source" for anthrax vaccine over a five-year period -- is obviously a massive win. Not surprisingly, shares are breaking through 52-week highs on extraordinarily high volume of already more than 2 million shares (versus its three-month average of just 187,000).

Now what: I wouldn't let today's price surge keep me from looking into Emergent. Given that shares still trade at a reasonable forward P/E, BioThrax -- the only anthrax vaccine licensed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration -- might be worth gaining at least some exposure to. Additionally, with the stock sporting a negative beta of 0.4, Emergent might even be a decent way to smooth volatility in a well-diversified portfolio.

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