Inovio (INO) Stock Rose 8% Yesterday, Up 5% Now as Hunt for COVID-19 Vaccine Goes On

UTC by Teuta Franjkovic · 4 min read
Inovio (INO) Stock Rose 8% Yesterday, Up 5% Now as Hunt for COVID-19 Vaccine Goes On
Photo: Depositphotos

Inovio (INO) stock was jumped 8% yesterday, is in the green now after the company released its fiscal Q1 earnings report, while it is working on a coronavirus vaccine.

American biotechnology company Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: INO), together with another biotech firm Moderna Inc (NASDAQ: MRNA) have recently been considered front-runners amid all the companies that dedicated its mission to develop vaccines for the SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Together with Inovio (INO) stock up, which rose around 220% year-to-date, updates from the company regarding its COVID-19 vaccine program are being closely watched by traders who are speculating on the company and its vaccine.

Inovio Q1 Earnings Report, INO Stock Is Up

Inovio reported its fiscal year 2020 Q1 earnings a few days ago. It had a first-quarter loss of 26 cents a share on revenue of $1.3 million. The company had been expected to report a loss of 22 cents a share, on sales of $1.9 million, based on a FactSet survey of six analysts. In the same period a year ago, the company posted a loss of 30 cents a share on sales of $2.8 million. It reported a loss of 33 million.

Inovio shares were jumping by 8% yesterday and by 5.81% to $12.90 in pre-market today. That means the stock has risen more than 15% since the company’s last reported earnings on March 12, driven by hopes for its INO-4800 coronavirus vaccine candidate which is in phase 1 trials. Inovio also stated it expects results from the initials trials in June and is preparing for a Phase 2/3 efficacy trial in order “to start this summer upon regulatory approval”.

At the time of writing, INO stock was 4.73% up at $13.51.

H.C. Wainwright analyst Ram Selvaraju has said the company’s vaccine candidate may offer some benefits over rivals such as Moderna’s (MRNA) because of the fact that it is easier for handling and storage. Selvaraju has a $17 price target on Inovio.

Assembled Losses of Approximately $739.8 Million

Be that as it may, since its inception, Inovio saw assembled losses of approximately $739.8 million. Since there is no commercial product in its portfolio, the company develops revenues mostly from licensing, grant funding and interest income.

Inovio’s focus stands on developing DNA medicines meant to treat, cure and protect against diseases associated with human papillomavirus and other infectious diseases. Its producing channel resides of three types of product candidates: DNA vaccines, DNA immunotherapies and DNA encoded monoclonal antibodies.

Around 12 product candidates in its pipeline at various stages are made either solely in partnerships. Most of Inovio’s programs, including those for HIV, Ebola, MERS, Zika virus and most recently COVID-19, are financed directly from state or by private nonprofit organizations.

Inovio first released its plans to develop a vaccine for the new coronavirus in January 23, when it said the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, or CEPI, granted the company a grant of up to $9 million.

The company assembled the vaccine after Chinese scientists acknowledged the genetic progression of the new strain of the coronavirus and began preclinical testing. As per the company, the CEPI funding was to promote the INO-4800 vaccine’s development from preclinical through Phase 1 clinical testing.

Inovio (INO) Vaccine Testing on Healthy Volunteers Already Started

The much-awaited human testing of INO-4800 for coronavirus in healthy volunteers began April 6. Inovio got $6.9 million in accumulative CEPI funding to work with the International Vaccine Institute and the Korea National Institute of Health for a Phase 1/2 trial in South Korea.

In late April, Inovio announced the enlistment in the U.S. Phase 1 study of INO-4800 vaccine was finished, and that 40 healthy volunteers received their first dose. The company said it expects to release temporary immune responses and safety results from the study in late June.

On March 24, Ology Bioservices, a CDMO, was awarded $11.9 million in DoD funding to work along with Inovio to manufacture INO-4800. On April 30, Inovio confirmed an agreement with German CDMO Richter-Helm BioLogic for large-scale manufacturing of the vaccine. The CEPI awarded another $1.3 million for the purpose.

Moderna said last week in its earnings release that it expects to commence a Phase 2 study shortly — after receiving the FDA nod for its IND for the study — and a Phase 3 study in early summer.

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Teuta Franjkovic

Experienced creative professional focusing on financial and political analysis, editing daily newspapers and news sites, economical and political journalism, consulting, PR and Marketing. Teuta’s passion is to create new opportunities and bring people together.

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