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Health Care Sector Update for 12/05/2019: AKER,PDCO,AUPH,SAGE

Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ +0.24%

PFE -0.21%

ABT +0.15%

MRK -0.01%

AMGN -0.20%

Health care stocks were edging higher, with the NYSE Health Care Index climbing almost 0.1% while the shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 also were down just over 0.1% as a group. The Nasdaq Biotechnology index was falling almost 1.3%.

Among health care stocks moving on news:

(-) Akers Biosciences (AKER) dropped 45% to a worst-ever $3.03 per share after the rapid health information technologies Thursday priced an $8 million public offering of 1.99 million common shares at $4 apiece, representing a 27.3% discount to Wednesday's closing price. Investors also received one warrant to buy one Series C convertible preferred share, also exercisable at $4 each, for each common share they purchased.

In other sector news:

(+) Aurinia Pharmaceuticals (AUPH) more than doubled in price at one point early Thursday, climbing 108% to a best-ever $17.48 a share, after saying a combination of its Voclosporin drug candidate and mycophenolate and low-dose corticosteroids produced a 40.8% renal response rate in patients with lupus nephritis compared with a 22.5% response rate in patients in the control group during a phase III trial.

(+) Patterson Cos (PDCO) climbed 14% after the dental and animal-health products distributor reported a better-than-expected non-GAAP Q2 profit and announced an agreement in principle with federal prosecutors in a probe of alleged improper sales by its Animal Health International unit. Under terms of the proposed deal, the company will pay $52.8 million in fines and forfeitures and will plead guilty to a strict-liability misdemeanor in exchange for a non-prosecution agreement by the US Attorney's Office in western Virginia.

(-) Sage Therapeutics (SAGE) slumped Thursday, falling as much as 62% to its lowest share price since February 2017, after reporting disappointing results from phase III testing of its SAGE-217 drug candidate to treat major depressive disorder, failing to achieve the primary endpoint of a statistically significant reduction in patient symptoms compared with a placebo.

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

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