Immunome soars 76% on Covid-19 hopes – but that's nothing

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Shares in Immunome jumped 76% yesterday after the company claimed to have isolated “potent antibodies” capable of neutralising several worrying SARS-CoV-2 variants, the result of very early discovery work that in today’s market is apparently worth $177m. This is far from the most egregious valuation surge triggered by Covid-19 claims, however, examples of which can be found from the very start of the pandemic. EvaluatePharma’s EventAnalyzer helps pinpoint some of the biggest percentage one-day gains seen over the past 12 months. Almost all of these groups used the opportunity to raise money, and most have failed to deliver on hopes. Ocugen stands out as a big beneficiary, for now at least. The company was a penny stock a mere 10 weeks ago, and executives were poised to ask shareholders to agree to a painful reverse split to prevent the stock’s banishment from Nasdaq. A deal with the Indian vaccines group Bharat Biotech changed its fortunes, and the initial near tripling of Ocugen’s shares was only the beginning of the gains. This is an exception rather than the rule, of course, something that those chasing Immunome yesterday would do well to remember.

Chasing cures: the biggest one-day share price moves prompted by Covid-19 announcements
Company  Event  Share price rise (%) Resulting market cap ($m) Current market cap ($m)
Equillium Jul 13, 2020: partner Biocon claims a mortality benefit in 30-patient trial of itolizumab, used to treat cytokine release syndrome in hospitalised Covid-19 patients 731% 469 268
Bellerophon Therapeutics Mar 20, 2020: FDA grants emergency expanded access to company's inhaled nitric oxide delivery system INOpulse for treating Covid-19 431% 82 75
Synairgen Jul 21, 2020: data from a 101-patient phase II trial show 79% reduction in risk of severe disease with SNG001 vs placebo 421% 349 367
Capricor Therapeutics Apr 29, 2020: 6 of 6 patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome caused by Covid-19, treated with cardiac cell therapy CAP-1002, survived, and four recovered 253% 76 148
Immuron Jul 21, 2020: company claims that its IMM-124E technology is active against Covid-19 virus, in preclinical experiments 249% 99 53
Gritstone Oncology Jan 19, 2021: company starts phase I trial of second-generation Covid-19 vaccine intended to protect against mutant variants 249% 841 694
AIM Immunotech Mar 9, 2020: Japan starts testing company's chronic fatigue drug Ampligen, in Covid-19 191% 135 101
Ibio Feb 28, 2020: files to raise $100m in the wake of deal with CC-Pharming to develop and produce Covid-19 vaccine candidates 183% 187 442
Ocugen  Dec 12, 2020: signs US development and commercialisation deal with Bharat Biotech over the Indian group's Covid-19 vaccine candidate Covaxin  174% 130 1,900
Tiziana Life Sciences Mar 11, 2020: company says it plans to put its preclinical anti-IL-6 project TZLS-501 into Covid-19 trials 166% 152 311
Note: excludes companies with a market cap move of less than $35m. Source: EvaluatePharma & company releases.

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