Sector Update: Healthcare


Healthcare shares are mixed in pre-market, while Inovio Pharmaceutical ( INO ) is up more than 16% in pre-market trade after saying its DNA Vaccine for the Middle East Syndrome coronavirus induced robust and durable immune responses in a preclinical trial.

Since 2012, the MERS virus has killed 42% of those infected.

Inovio said that in the study, the vaccine constructs were observed to induce strong neutralizing antibodies and broad CD8+ T cells in mice. "These findings are vital given the importance of neutralizing antibodies in preventing infection and the role T cells play in clearing infection by killing cells that harbor the virus," the company said in a statement.

And, in other major gainers in healthcare this morning, shares of Unilife ( UNIS ) are up 15.7% at $3.24 after Hikma Pharmaceuticals announced that it has signed a long term commercial supply contract with the company for the use of Unifill prefilled syringes with a range of generic injectable drugs.

Under the 15-year global agreement, Unilife will supply Hikma with customised prefillable delivery systems from its Unifill platform. For the exclusive global rights to use Unilife's Unifill products with a selection of Hikma's generic injectable products, Hikma will pay a total of $40 million, comprising an upfront payment of $5 million, an additional $15 million payment expected during 2014 and a further $20 million in milestone-based payments to be paid thereafter.

Unilife will commence product sales to Hikma in early 2014.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2014 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: INO , UNIS

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