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Oncology is one of the most valuable subsectors of the healthcare sector, and for good reason. Cancer is a life-threatening condition. Many types of cancer come with little to no treatment options for patients. Many cancers that do offer plenty of treatment options still have high mortality rates. 

The good news is that, driven by the high demand for and value of successful cancer treatments, there is plenty of research going on in the field of oncology, and new treatments are being developed all the time. 

With that said, here are 5 oncology stocks that investors should be watching closely:

Inovio Pharmaceuticals (INO): Taking A DNA-Based Approach To Cancer Treatment

Inovio Pharmaceuticals is a clinical-stage biotechnology company that is working on treatments to address a wide range of ailments. In fact, the company has become a household name across the United States due to its work to develop a COVID-19 vaccine. 

However, DNA-based vaccines aren’t the only thing that INO is working on. In fact, it’s very active in the oncology space. 

At the moment, the company has three clinical programs in the field of oncology. These include:

  1. MEDI-0457 – Currently in the midst of Phase 2 studies, MEDI-0457 is being developed as a potential treatment option for HPV-related cancers. These include head & neck, cervical, anal, penile, and vulvar cancers. 
  2. INO-5401 – INO-5401 is also in the midst of Phase 2 development. This program is assessing a DNA-based option for patients with glioblastoma multiforme. 
  3. INO-5151 – Finally, INO-5151 is also in the midst of Phase 2 studies. The treatment is being developed as a potential option against prostate cancer. 

Previous studies on all of these treatments have yielded promising efficacy and safety results, suggesting that Inovio Pharmaceuticals DNA-based approach can be incredibly valuable. This, combined with the company’s work in COVID-19 and other ailments, makes INO stock one that’s worth watching closely. 

GT Biopharma (GTBP): TriKE Technology Could Be Incredibly Valuable

GT Biopharma is another clinical-stage biotechnology company that’s focused on the development of treatments for a wide range of ailments. Currently, the company has six candidates, either clinical, or preclinical, under development. Three of these candidates are being developed in the field of oncology, including:

  • OXS-1550 – Currently under development as a potential option for acute lymphocytic leukemia non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. 
  • OXS-3550 – Currently under development for myeloid malignancies. 
  • OXS-1615 – Finally, OXS-1615 is being developed as a potential option for the treatment of carcinoma. 

The claim to fame at GTBP has to do with the company’s proprietary TriKE technology. The company’s TriKEs are tri-specific NK cell engagers that were designed to overcome limitations seen in CAR-T and other antibody therapies. TriKEs are small, single-chain infusion proteins that bind to the CD16 receptor of NK cells. In preclinical studies, this has shown to produce a more potent and long-lasting response, activating NK, or natural killer cells, and helping to lead to positive outcomes.  

Importantly, due to the small size of these TriKEs, it is believed that they are better distributed systemically, which has the potential to lead to strong efficacy. All in all, the company’s TriKE technology has the potential to address a wide range of cancers and other ailments, including COVID-19, making it a technology that comes with serious potential and making GTBP a stock that should not be ignored.

Clovis Oncology (CLVS): Last Year’s Blues Brought Undervaluation

Last year was a rough year for Clovis Oncology. Unfortunately, while the company launched a commercial oncology product, Rubraca, the treatment, originally approved as an option for patients with advanced ovarian cancer,  was met with difficulty in commercial performance, upsetting investors. As a result of the poor performance, the company reported a painful loss, leading to serious declines in the value of the stock. 

Nonetheless, we’ve seen the beginning of a strong recovery throughout the first several months of this year. Much of the excitement has to do with the fact that the label on Rubraca has been expanded to include, not only advanced ovarian cancer, but advanced prostate cancer. 

This is a huge win for Clovis Oncology as the move has the potential to greatly expand sales. In fact, it is estimated that by the year 2025, with this key indication in mind, the company will generate sales of around $740 million annually. 

To put this figure into perspective, the company currently trades with a market cap of around $600 million. So, analysts are expecting that by the year 2025, sales of Rubraca will surpass the company’s current market cap by more than $100 million per year. 

Aside from Rubraca, CLVS has several other treatment options under development in the field of oncology. Three of these treatments are in late stages and could be the next treatment options to move to commercialization at the company. 

All in all, CLVS is a stock that’s hard to ignore. 

Final Thoughts

The bottom line here is simple. Oncology is one of the highest-value subsectors in the biotechnology space. Picking the right stocks in this space has the potential to yield serious returns. 

In my opinion, the three stocks mentioned above have incredible long-run potential, making them worth keeping a close eye on. 

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