This is a bonus weekend “quickie” for you, so it’s not a stock I’m going to go in depth on… but I thought you might want a few moments to think about it while the market’s not open.
The promise is absurd, here’s a taste of it from the top of the ad:
“ALERT: Agora Financial’s biggest prediction yet
“On February 14th a miracle announcement could give hope to millions… overturning three decades of stuck-in-the-mud research… and sending 1 microcap stock THROUGH THE ROOF…
‘Alzheimer’s Disease is Now Completely Treatable'”
That’s an extraordinarily bold prediction to make, but it’s also, frankly, a bit cruel — no, we are not going to hear that “Alzheimer’s Disease is Now Completely Treatable” on February 14. That’s a headline promise to get your attention, and, if we’re being charitable, a hope for the future.
And the financial prediction is equally nutty:
“The prediction? For the first-time ever, a true Alzheimer’s breakthrough could be just days away from being unveiled to the public… by an unknown, microcap company no one’s heard of. Based on a similar historical precedent, if this prediction is correct – and we’re nearly certain it is – it could result in a surge in company value of as much as $40 billion. Hard to imagine, but if that kind of sudden growth happens to the small cap company DETAILED BELOW, the result would be unprecedented:the largest two-day gain in stock market history.”
So what’s the actual stock? I said we’ll be quick, so I’m going to skip over a lot of the usual stuff… Ray Blanco calls their technology a “revolutionary ‘prion targeting’ protocol,” and these are the hints he drops about the company:
“A scientific breakthrough so advanced… so revolutionary… it’s now being recognized by the world’s leading brain researchers as apotential CURE for a disease they thought couldn’t be stopped
“It’s true. Including…
“Doctors at the Boston University School of Medicine, who published a detailed paper on the science behind this doctor’s research, concluding it ‘offers new hope to Alzheimer’s Disease patients and families.’
“The University of British Columbia, which has partnered with this doctor to bring this solution to Alzheimer’s patients as fast as possible.
“A panel of experts at the prestigious Alzheimer’s Association International Conference who recently reached a consensus confirming this theory.”
And he claims that there’s a February 14 announcement coming…
“On February 14, 2018, this doctor is going to gather the press at his companyheadquarters… stride up to the podium… and stun the world”
And that there has been a lot of insider buying…
“Just 11 men and women make up this company’s Senior Management Team and Board of Directors.
And would you believe over the last several months these 11 men and women… the doctor included… bought more than 10 million shares of the company?”
And “in the know” buying…
“… recently, the smartest, most connected insiders and biotech investors in the game loaded up on this one….
“Michael Bigger, the legendary scientist turned technology investor who made a name for himself with investments in Innovative Fibers, Netflix, Priceline, Amazon, and more. He recently snapped up saying…
‘This is a multi-billion dollar opportunity hiding in a dark alley… Never in my life have I seen a situation with such enormous potential and catalysts already at work… ‘
“Eden Rahim – who with annual returns that have put Warren Buffett to shame, you could consider the ‘Buffett of Biotech’- recently went all-in on this company, declaring…
‘I’m in it because of some of the really important insights it has discovered into the mechanism of action of Alzheimer’s disease… [It has] a really favorable risk/reward proposition.’
“A group of venture capitalists who insisted their identities be kept private. They didn’t just dip their toes in. They bought 18.7 million shares.”
So who is it? This is, Thinkolator sez, the little Canadian biotech ProMIS Neurosciences (PMN in Toronto, ARFXF OTC in the US).
And I’m not going to dig deep into this one, I just want you to be able to start your thinking on it. The important “slow your roll” item I want to bring to your attention is that the lead drug for ProMIS, PMN310, is still Pre-Clinical. That means it hasn’t yet been tested in a human being — this is a promising drug that seems to target toxic oligomers in the lab, but hasn’t yet been tried in a person.
Human trials, starting with an FDA approval to begin Phase 1, which has not yet been applied for, are at least a year away. Their investor presentation indicates that they are on track to initiate clinical trials in 2019 and “provide potentially superior clinical data vs aducanumab in late 2021” from their Phase II trials.
So yes, the company will likely have a quarterly report around February 14, but the most aggressive thing likely from that is some update to their timeline for applying to start Phase 1 trials (the IND application) at some point over the next year or so, or, perhaps some optimistic commentary about partnering with a larger company.
Just do remember, please, that Alzheimer’s Disease drugs that are in the lab or even in Phase 1 trials are by their very nature exciting and hopeful… it’s when they try them on lots of human beings that reality has hit for most of the drugs we’ve seen advanced in the past, either because of safety concerns or lack of efficacy. The stock jumped 50% on Friday just because of Blanco’s ad campaign, but it’s still a tiny $77 million R&D company.
They say they’re “pursuing a Nasdaq listing, likely in 2018,” which could also have a big impact on the stock… and would be accompanied, I would assume, by some substantial capital raising — perhaps very soon They’ve been living hand to mouth by selling shares to raise the cash they burn through each quarter for the past couple years, but if they actually move to clinical trials they’ll need a lot more money.
The FDA is focusing on getting Alzheimer’s Disease drugs developed, and they have laid out several ways to speed up the approval process for these drugs… but that doesn’t mean they’re going to green light a drug that literally tens of millions of people would beg their doctors for without some clear indication of safety and at least a little bit of efficacy, so the clinical trial process is not going to go away, it can just speed up a bit. Which, of course, is not the primary concern for this little company because their drug has not yet even reached the point of applying to begin clinical trials… so cool your jets, ignore the promise of becoming a millionaire by Summer, look it over, and let us know what you think with a comment below. Maybe it will be a great winner, I have no idea, there are a lot of steps in between and investor enthusiasm could easily send the stock soaring after that kind of wild promise is made by a large financial publisher… but they’re not going to announce that they’ve cured Alzheimer’s Disease next month.
Over to year, dear readers… want to convince us either pro or con on ProMIS? Have at it with a comment below.
P.S. This isn’t the first time Blanco’s attention has been poured on an Alzheimer’s Disease stock — back in 2015 his teaser ad promises of a breakthrough, similar in tone to this ad, helped Anavex (AVXL) go from $5 to $15 in a matter of a week or so, though it came sharply back down when the reality of long-term clinical trials hit the stock. AVXL was far more advanced, of course, they were in Phase 2 trials at the time.