This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Investing Ideas For Flu Season

The influenza virus is a dynamic bug that changes annually which means health conscious consumers get a new cocktail of viruses in their vaccinations each year. Of course, flu shots are still a crapshoot since unpredictable mutations are always a possibility.

Flu season is in full swing. This year, the Center for Disease Control has targeted the following 3 strains, a couple you may even recognize from years past.

  • A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus
  • A/Victoria/36/2011 (H3N2)-like virus
  • B/Wisconsin/1/2010-like virus (from the B/Yamagata lineage of viruses)

Recently a few companies have added to the troika of viruses to make a better flu shot. Quadrivalent vaccines target 4 strains to cast an even wider net. This type of vaccine was approved by the FDA in March this year.  A few US companies are already developing these vaccines.

Astrazeneca (AZN) has FDA approval on its quadrivalent nasal spray vaccines, Flumist in the US and Fluenz in Europe. They are produced by its subsidiary MedImmune. These will roll out for the next flu season. The company was able to secure a contract with the UK to provide ~155 mil. worth of Fluenz for kids with production really ramping up in 2014.

Glaxosmithkline (GSK) and Sanofi Pastuer (SNY) are not far behind. GSK has applied for licenses to make quadrivalent versions of its ccurrent influenza vaccines, Fluarix and FluLavel, for the end of 2012 and 2013 respectively. Sanofi is also awaiting FDA approval.

 

Stock performance in the past year for the big companies making the 4 strain vaccine:

Novartis (NVS) is still a few years away from a four-strain vaccine. After halting European production of its flu vaccines earlier this year, Novartis has come back with US approval for Flucelvax. This new vaccine uses mammalian cell cultures instead of chicken eggs in production. But the product is restricted for the 18+ crowd.

Looking into farther in flu’s future, there are a handful of US biotech companies trying to develop a universal flu vaccine that will be effective in any year for any flu. Dynavax Technologis (DVAX) has partnered with the big players above for a few other non-flu vaccinations. It’s still testing a potential universal flu vaccine. Inovio (INO) is another contender which won a 3.1 million grant 2 years back to research universal flu options.

Those who don’t like shots or sprays can keep an eye on UV Flu Technologies. The company is developing a product called UV-Aid that uses ultraviolet light to stimulate the body’s defense system in areas where influenza is typically contracted like the ear or nose.

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,943.81 +28.74 0.17%
S&P 500 1,967.57 +2.89 0.15%
NASDAQ 4,415.49 +19.2860 0.44%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs