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Biotech Stock Mailbag: Catalyst Pharma, Amarin, Star Scientific

If the latter happens, Amarin shares will take another hit. Amarin shares price in a solo launch today more than they did this past summer but I think the stock will fall further into the single digits if Vascepa launches without a partner (or if Amarin isn't acquired.)

The silver lining: All the bad news will be wrung out of Amarin and the stock may become safer to own again.

Anthony M. writes, "Dear Mr. Feuerstein, I have read your article and also the Star Scientific (STSI)/Roskamp press release. I can't understand what your gripe is about. Has Star upset you in some way? There are millions of diabetes sufferers in the world and in the event it proves, which Star does not claim at the moment, that 25% of them may be helped with Anatabloc, either to get off entirely or reduce the metformin they take then this is a giant leap and is to be welcomed."

Wouldn't it be great if a dietary supplement sold at GNC stores could somehow cure diabetes? Too bad it will never happen.

@biostockfly asks, "You don't like this drug from $KERX either? Thought data looked good?"

I'm assuming you're referring to the phosphate binder Zerenex since that's the only drug left in Keryx Pharmaceuticals' (KERX - Get Report) late-stage pipeline following the perifosine blowup.

I'm willing to assume the long-term safety study of Zerenex comes back clean when results are reported later this quarter. You can probably trade around this catalyst if that's your thing.

But once the buzz dies down, Keryx goes dark as it waits a year for Zerenex to be filed with FDA and reviewed. In that downtime, Keryx will raise money. And even if Zerenex is approved, the drug will not sell. Dialysis providers operating under the cost constrictions of a "bundled" Medicare reimbursement system will flock to cheaper, generic phosphate binders. Zerenex will be left in the cold.

--Written by Adam Feuerstein in Boston.

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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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