This column was originally published on RealMoney on March 6 at 12:04 p.m. EST. It's being republished as a bonus for TheStreet.com readers.Biotech stocks have become a relatively safe haven in a tough market. Its emerging leaders are hitting new highs almost every day while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq grind toward an uncomfortable halt. Unfortunately, we're not talking about a broad-based rally -- it's been a stock-picker's market since a huge sector move topped out in November. Former leaders Genentech ( DNA), Genzyme ( GENZ) and Amgen ( AMGN - Get Report) have given up a good share of their 2005 gains in recent months. You have to look at the mid- and small-cap biotech stocks to find the real gems right now. Many of these lesser-known companies are swimming in red ink but show great promise. Without question, these are the issues offering the best trades so far this year. At the top of the heap stand the companies with revolutionary drugs in the market and sugar-daddy partners taking a share of the profits. Most often these outfits have few retail products, but they sit on a pipeline of innovative drugs in the later stages of the approval process.
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