Healthcare Stocks Turn Early Relative Strength into Small, Late Gain

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Healthcare stocks were outperforming most of the market Monday, turning higher this afternoon and the NYSE Healthcare Sector Index rising 0.3%. Shares of healthcare companies in the S&P 500 also were up about 0.3% as a group in afternoon trade.

In company news, Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. ( ORMP ) was sharply higher Monday, rising nearly 26% in recent trade after earlier saying it will announce results from Phase IIa testing of its ORMD-0801 oral insulin capsule on Thursday, Jan. 30, at an investor conference taking place at the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange in Israel.

The company in mid-November said that the last patient had completed treatment in the double-blind, randomized trial of the prospective Type 2 diabetes drug. Overall, 30 U.S. patients participated in the trial begun last July intended to evaluate ORMD-0801's safety profile.

During Phase I testing completed earlier in 2013, ORMD-0801 was well tolerated and significantly stabilized blood sugar levels in patients with uncontrolled Type 1 diabetes, resulting in a significant drop in the frequency of above-normal blood sugar readings along with a decrease in overall blood sugar levels throughout the day.

ORMP shares climbed as high as $25.18 during Monday's session, up 25.9%, and was ahead nearly 21% at $24.24 in late morning trade. The stock has a 52-week range of $5.00 to $31.73 a share.

In other sector news,

(+) NWBO, (+5.4%) Biotechnology company developing personalized immune therapies for solid tumor cancers enters a series of agreements with Cognate Bioservices allowing it to expand its manufacturing, storage and distribution starting Jan. 17.

(-) KOOL, (-16.3%) ThermoGenesis Drops 17%; Sells 3.3 Mln Shares at Discounted $2.00 in Private Placement



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