Soligenix, Inc. (NASDAQ: SNGX) is running up in the premarket hours this morning, and for good reason. The company announced positive preclinical data from a COVID-19 vaccine program.
Here’s what’s happening:
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- Soligenix Announces COVID-19 Vaccine News
- Management Commentary
- What Analysts Think About SNGX Stock
- Risks to Consider Before Buying SNGX Stock
- Final Thoughts
Soligenix Announces COVID-19 Vaccine News
In the press release, Soligenix announced the publication of pre-clinical immunogenicity studies of CiVax, a heat stable COVID-19 vaccine program. The data suggests that the vaccine results in rapid-onset, broad spectrum, neutralizing antibody and cell-mediated immunity. This was confirmed using full-length Spike protein antigens.
SNGX said that the article is titled, “Recombinant protein subunit SARS-CoV-2 vaccines formulated with CoVaccine HT adjuvant induce broad, TH1 biased, humoral and cellular immune responses in mice. The article has been posted on an accelerated preprint on bioRxiv.
Moreover, the company said that the work will continue under a $1.5 million Small Business Innovation Research grant awarded to the company in December of last year.
SNGX went on to explain that CiVax is its heat stable subunit vaccine candidate for the prevention of COVID-19.
In the release, the company went on to explain why it’s so important to develop a heat stable COVID-19 vaccine. Ultimately, there are multiple vaccines that have received regulatory approval. However, the requirement for cold chain shipping and timely administration, coupled with manufacturing scale up logistics, have limited supply. As a result, the company believes that its heat stable CiVax provides a solution to these issues.
In a statement, Alex Lehrer, PhD, Associate Professor in the Department of Tropical Medicine, Medical Microbiology and Pharmacology at the John A. Burns School of Medicine, had the following to offer:
Our work to date has demonstrated not only the feasibility of rapidly adaptable and cost-effective manufacturing of the required vaccine antigens, but also the potential for a broadly applicable and easily distributed vaccine.
We are delighted with our earlier successes on development of filovirus and flavivirus vaccines with this platform. The results in our latest manuscript confirm that the advantages of our vaccine platform with the CoVaccine HT™ adjuvant can also be realized in the context of SARS-CoV-2, while we continue our work to rapidly advance development of a heat stable subunit COVID-19 vaccine in collaboration with Soligenix. Next steps will include evaluation of immunogenicity in a non-human primate model and assessment of antibody coverage with key variants of concern.
The above statement was followed up by Christopher J. Schaber, PhD, President and CEO at SNGX. Here’s what he had to offer:
We believe that creating a vaccine with enhanced stability at elevated temperatures that can obviate the costs and logistical burdens associated with cold chain storage and distribution has the potential to simplify worldwide distribution, leading to a faster resolution of this pandemic and curtailing the further evolution of the virus.
Once fully developed, we anticipate that our platform would be easily updated to address specific variants directly. Our approach appears to be unique in its use of a well-established, well-understood, and safe, subunit platform coupled with a novel adjuvant and a thermostabilizing formulation. We are very encouraged with the latest results and look forward to continuing to advance development of CiVax™ in larger animal models and human clinical trials.
What Analysts Think About SNGX Stock
Overall, analysts have a positive opinion of Soligenix stock. In fact, at the moment, three analysts are covering the stock, two of which rate it a Buy, with the remainder rating it a Hold.
Price targets range from $2 to $5.75, with a median price target of $3.58, suggesting the potential for significant gains ahead.
Risks to Consider Before Buying SNGX Stock
If you’re thinking about buying SNGX stock, it’s important to take a moment to consider the risk. At the end of the day, there’s no such thing as a risk-free investment. When it comes to Soligenix, the most significant risks to consider include:
- Clinical & Regulatory Risk. Soligenix is a clinical-stage biotechnology company. As a result, the company is at the mercy of clinical results and regulatory opinions of those results. Should results be positive, or regulators form a negative opinion about one of the company’s therapies, we could see significant declines.
- Capital. As a clinical-stage biotech SNGX doesn’t make any money and has to survive on the money it has in the bank. If the company isn’t able to reach profitability prior to running out of funds, it may look to public markets as a way to raise capital, resulting in dilution and potentially significant declines.
- Penny Stock. Finally, SNGX stock is a penny stock. As a result, the stock is known to experience high levels of volatility, which can ultimately result in painful losses over a short period of time.
Sure, there are risks to consider, but the potential reward here is hard to ignore. Ultimately, the company is filling a void in the COVID-19 vaccine space. Due to the need to keep the currently available vaccines cold, supplies are limited. However, should this vaccine come to market, it will be able to be stored in normal temperatures, making it far more feasible.
Moreover, SNGX is working on several candidates, some of which are in late stages. As a result, the company has several potential catalysts on the horizon that could send the stock screaming for the top. All in all, SNGX stock is one to watch closely.