Stock return since Jan. 1: 198%
A biotech bubble wouldn't be complete without a new crop of investors "discovering" Entremed, the cancer-drug developer made famous -- or infamous -- by a New York Times front-page article in 1998. The article claimed Entremed was curing cancer by discovering two compounds that starved tumors of their blood supply. Less noticed was that Entremed's research at that time was only done on mice. Unfortunately, mice are cured of cancer all the time, people not so much. Although the scientific thesis underlying Entremed's research was later vindicated by the success and approval Genentech's Avastin, Entremed's own anti-cancer drug research flopped.Entremed's record of drug-development futility is hard to match yet the company survives, always short of cash, always transitioning or re-inventing itself every few years. And like clockwork, when a new biotech bubble comes along, investors who know nothing of Entremed's checkered history start buying the stock again, insisting that this time, Entremed will be a winner. Entremed shares closed Tuesday down 8% to $2.60.