Shares in micro-cap clinical-stage biopharma OXiGENE (OXGN) spiked over 60 percent on Wednesday without any clear reason driving the huge gains on heavy volume. The company has been declining in 2013, losing over half of its value since January prior to today’s spike. The company’s stock had four spikes in trading volume between February and July, each of which resulted in a temporary jump in value that quickly fell off as the stock continued a steady decline. Today’s jump, though, represents a much bigger gain on much higher volume than those previous surges.
OXiGENE’s primary asset is ZYBRESTAT, a vascular disrupting agent expected to help in fighting cancerous tumors. The drug is intended to cut off blood flow to tumors, making them more vulnerable to conventional drugs. The drug has not reached markets yet, though, and OXiGENE has failed to produce revenue in three of the last four years and four of the last five quarters.
Presentation at BIO-Europe
Potentially driving today’s surge is a presentation by President and CEO Dr. Peter Langecker, M.D. at the BIO-Europe conference in Vienna, Austria. The corporate overview delivered today could be what’s driving the major gain. The BIO-Europe conference is Europe’s largest partnering conference for pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and finance companies, with 2012’s conference featuring over 1,600 participating companies from 52 different countries.
Another potential explanation for the day’s spike could lie in a closer examination of the stock’s technicals. The stock has been making slow but steady gains since bottoming out in September, gaining over 20 percent from September 11 to yesterday. During this time, it crossed both the 50- and 100-day moving averages and stayed above them, potentially giving technical traders a sign that the stock’s gaining momentum. Now, shares have cleared the 200-day moving average.
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