|By Marketwired .||
|March 6, 2013 08:20 AM EST||
NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 03/06/13 -- A sharp increase in drug approvals and mergers and acquisitions combined to create a bull market for the Biotechnology Industry in 2012. The iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB), the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (XBI) and the First Trust Amex Biotechnology Index ETF (FBT) have all gained over 20 percent in the past year, outperforming the broader markets by a good margin. Research Driven Investing examines investing opportunities in the Biotech Industry and provides equity research on Neuralstem, Inc. (NYSE: CUR) and Dyax Corp. (NASDAQ: DYAX).
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Bloomberg recently reported drug approvals by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration reached a 15 year high in 2012. The FDA approved a total of 39 novel medicines last year, an increase of 30 percent when compared to a year ago. Oncology drugs lead the way with 11 new drugs approved last year. Over the last ten years the number of FDA approvals had averaged roughly 23 a year. The passage of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) played a major role in the sharp increase in approvals.
The PDUFA "has provided critical resources for improving the quality and timeliness of premarket review of drugs," said FDA spokeswoman Sandy Walsh. "These accomplishments could not have been achieved without the innovations of the biopharmaceutical industry and the dedication and skill of FDA's drug review staff."
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Neuralstem's patented technology enables the ability to produce neural stem cells of the human brain and spinal cord in commercial quantities, and the ability to control the differentiation of these cells constitutively into mature, physiologically relevant human neurons and glia. The company has recently granted licenses for central nervous system therapy surgical devices to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
Dyax is a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of novel biotherapeutics for unmet medical needs. The Company's key value drivers are the KALBITOR business and the angioedema portfolio. Shares of the company spiked sharply Tuesday after receiving a "buy" rating from Jeffries.
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