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2012 Biotech Stock Predictions: An Interim Report Card

6. Roche (RHHBY) doesn't buy Aeterna Zentaris (AEZS) despite a half-dozen additional Seeking Alpha articles penned by "Jeremy Richards" claiming otherwise.

Booyah. Not that this prediction took many brain cells to conjure. The real point, of course, was to remind investors about the risks in speculating or day-trading small-cap biotech stocks, particularly stocks like Aeterna Zentaris with horrendous drug-development track records. (Perifosine, anyone?)

7. Leucovorin shortages end, so too does Spectrum Pharma's fairytale ride.

Nope. Leucovorin supplies have not recovered to any appreciable degree, allowing Spectrum to grow Fusilev sales well beyond my expectations. Yet Spectrum shares are down 20% this year with short interest as high as ever and new questions raised about the level of Fusilev discounting.

8. Vertex Pharma's (VRTX) cystic fibrosis drug Kalydeco will be approved. More importantly, studies testing Kalydeco combined with other Vertex's cystic fibrosis drugs will show strong benefit in a larger swath of patients. Vertex becomes a cystic fibrosis company. Hepatitis C? What's that?

Nailed it.

9. FDA rejects obesity drugs from Arena Pharmaceuticals (ARNA) and Vivus (VVUS) for a second time.

I nailed this prediction, too. To my foot, through the floor. Ouch.

10. Celgene will be the best-performing large-cap (market cap greater than $10 billion) biotech stock in 2012.

Not so much. Celgene, up just 7% year to date, is actually the worst performing biotech stock with a market cap greater than $10 billion. Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN) tops the list, up 162% this year. (The stock didn't even qualify by market cap in January, nor did Vertex at No. 2, up 61% year to date.)

Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN) (+49%), Gilead Sciences (+40%), Biogen Idec (+34%) and Amgen (+32%) are all performing better than Celgene. What happened? More like what didn't happen, as in Revlimid's long-delayed European approval for front-line multiple myeloma. I didn't anticipate Celgene management screwing the pooch as badly as they have this year.

--Written by Adam Feuerstein in Boston.



>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Adam Feuerstein.

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Adam Feuerstein writes regularly for TheStreet. In keeping with company editorial policy, he doesn't own or short individual stocks, although he owns stock in TheStreet. He also doesn't invest in hedge funds or other private investment partnerships. Feuerstein appreciates your feedback; click here to send him an email.
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