Health stocks took yet another ugly spill with the broader markets late afternoon Thursday.The Nasdaq and Amex biotechnology indices tripped late in the trading day falling to losses of 5.3% and 4.6%, respectively, by market close. The Amex pharmaceutical index gave up a stunning 8.3% on Thursday. One exception was King Pharmaceutical ( KG), which saw share rise 27 cents, or 3.49%, to $8. Natixis Bleichroeder analyst Corey Davis upped his rating for the battered stock to buy from sell. Meanwhile, Omrix Biopharmacueticals ( OMRI) announced that a phase II study on its Fibrin Pad in mild to moderate bleeding was suspended Wednesday afternoon to investigate an incident of post-operative bleeding. Omrix shares were on the rise a day earlier when the company said that according to interim results from a midstage trial, the Fibrin Pad was superior to Johnson & Johnson's ( JNJ) Surgicel for stopping mild to moderate soft tissue bleeding during certain surgeries. Omrix Shares ultimately plummeted $6.14, or 34.5%, to $11.67, on Thursday. Cardiome ( CRME) and Astellas said Thursday that they will have an "End of Review" meeting with the Food and Drug Administration on Nov. 14 regarding the application for atrial fibrillation drug Kynapid. The FDA sent the company an approvable letter -- meaning the drug could eventually be approved if certain conditions were met -- in August after an FDA advisory panel recommended in December that the agency approve Kynapid. The companies said they also had withdrawn their application for Canadian approval and plan to refile after they have found resolution with the FDA.
Cardiome shares were off by $1.12, or 18.33%, at $4.99 Thursday. Elsewhere, Invitrogen ( IVGN) gave some preliminary third-quarter results Thursday, saying that quarterly growth was in the mid-teens, with a sizable benefit from foreign exchange rates, and that adjusted earnings increased more than 20%. Invitrogen also said that based on synergies and lower share count resulting from its merger with Applied Biosystems, it expects higher EPS for 2009 -- $2.65 a share, vs. $2.60 a share. Shares were off by $1.04, or 3.39%, at $29.64. In analyst actions, Susquehanna Financial upgraded Sepracor ( SEPR)to neutral from negative. Sepracor shares were off by 99 cents, or 7.15% at $12.85 by late afternoon. Credit Suisse downgraded Eli Lilly ( LLY), which has bid $70 a share for ImClone Systems ( IMCL), to neutral from outperform and lowered its price target to $42 from $56. Lilly traded down $4.68, or 12.35%, to $33.22. ImClone shares were down 60 cents, or 0.90%, at $66.25. Nobody ever made a dime by panicking, says Jim Cramer. Moneymaking opportunities exist despite the market turmoil. So where's a market master like Cramer putting his money these days? Check out his personal portfolio at Action Alerts PLUS. Take a free trial now.