The lead candidate for Neose is NE-180, designed to treat anemia stemming from chemotherapy or chronic renal failure. Next in development is GlycoPEG-GCSF, to restore decreased white blood cell counts following chemotherapy.
These drug candidates target markets with total sales in excess of $15 billion. At present, those spaces are dominated by Johnson & Johnson's
Neose has a solid balance sheet with $44.6 million in cash and investments at the end of March. The company anticipates a cash burn of $32 million-$35 million in 2007. That follows a massive restructuring in March, reducing the company's staff by 40%, to offset higher development costs this year for lead drug candidate NE-180. Company executives believe this move will give the company enough funds to reach crucial development milestones, which should bring in payments from its partners for lead drug candidates.
I'm encouraged by institutional investors' willingness to continue supporting Neose as it closes in on important clinical trial milestones. For a micro-cap biotech stock, Neose has impressive institutional ownership, exceeding 50% of all shares. It's also forged other strong partnerships with such firms as European drug giant Novo Nordisk
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Fool contributor Mike Havrilla, R.Ph., B.S., Pharm.D., is a Rite Aid pharmacist who lives, writes, works, and enjoys running on the streets and trails in the small Pennsylvania town of Portage. He invites your comments and feedback. Johnson and Johnson is an Income Investor selection. Mike does not have a position in any company mentioned in this article. The Fool has a disclosure policy.