LOS ANGELES, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 04/04/13 -- Anyone who has ever had a family member or friend afflicted with cancer knows first hand that the treatments they must endure seem far more devastating than the disease itself. An exciting video released by CEL-SCI (NYSE Amex: CVM) earlier this week gave investors a first ever glimpse at the manufacturing facility outside of Baltimore where scientists hope all of that is about to change.
We've noted before that CEL-SCI shares appear to be trading at undervalued levels given that the company is so far along in its development process (currently in PHASE III clinical trials), but last week shares took a hit for no apparent reason. That prompted several insiders at the company, led by Chief Executive Officer, Geert Kersten, to buy nearly 400,000 shares at discounted prices. Within a couple of sessions, shares bounced back to the $.25 level where they had been trading for some time, but still below their 50-day moving average.
Investors have taken notice that this is the first time since 2008 that Kersten has purchased shares in the open market and that the stock saw some appreciation not long after those purchases. That leads some, including myself, to speculate that there may be some positive developments and news flow ahead for the company.
This company has been around for a long time and it has prompted some to ask tough questions about their efforts. CEL-SCI critics paint the company as far too secretive for a firm that has been at this game too long. Perhaps the release of this new video footage can change some of that?
In one video interview last October, CEO Kersten defended his firm acknowledging that "This is the first cancer drug being developed as a true first line therapy, meaning before you get surgery, radiation or chemotherapy, we would boost your immune system. Everybody today boosts your immune system after having destroyed it. Doesn't make much logical sense, right? So everything we do is different."
In the newly released video titled "The CEL-SCI Story" much time is spent highlighting the work the company has been doing for those 25 years, showcasing CEL-SCI's promising cancer immunotherapy, Multikine.
A rare appearance by the firm's Dr. Eyal Taylor shows him saying that what Multikine does is "not carpet bombing, it's smart bombing." In short, the confidence and enthusiasm of the CEL-SCI team featured in the video is contagious.
From an investment perspective, Multikine is entering Phase III trials to determine if CEL-SCI has indeed developed a "smart bomb" to combat head and neck cancer. The data from Phase I and II trials are extremely encouraging, but the stock has lacked consistent news flow and developments. If some if the rumors we are hearing on the street, that may be about to change.
The video reminds us that CEL-SCI has wisely retained the marketing rights of Multikine in both the United States and Europe. The company has also taken steps to protect the Multikine formula by building the private "Cold-Fill" manufacturing facility which we get some glimpses of for the first time in the video.
Based on some of the trading volume increases following the release of the video, it's hard to imagine that investors didn't get excited about CEL-SCI and Multikine after watching it. The company clearly understands the potential value of Multikine to both cancer patients as well as to investors. You don't always see this balanced and focused approach, and that catches our attention as well.
The fact that there are 7,547,400 million shares short right now marks a slight drop and some covering by those who were previously bearish about the stock. 2.43% of the company is owned by insiders while 6.80% is owned by institutions.
In recent days, shares have recovered 19.05% from the sudden drop which occurred last week, but there is still more upside here. Keep your eyes on CEL-SCI, whose market cap is a mere $ 78,000,000. This one could be getting ready to reach higher with some positive news developments... Again.
Disclosure: Author Ray Dirks owns no shares of CVM
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