iBio (IBIO) Stock Surges in Premarket after Gaining 83% Friday
Shares of iBio Inc. (IBIO) were up +1.13 or +76.87 percent to $2.60 per share in Monday's premarket after news that the company might have a significant role in increasing the production of the experimental drug against the Ebola virus, ZMapp. Ibio Inc. stock closed at $1.47 per share, up +0.6698 or +83.7 percent in
The reason the stock has soared in the past two days is that it has partnered with Bryan, Texas based Caliber Biotherapeutics for the production of ZMapp, the most advanced experimental Ebola treatment drug. ZMapp is currently produced by a privately owned San Diego, Californian company, Mapp Biopharmaceutical.
The drug is a combination of three monoclonal antibodies and was recently used to treat two U.S. health workers infected with Ebola in Liberia. ZMapp is produced through a lengthy process in tobacco plants and the supply of the drug has been exhausted. Because of its advanced technology, iBio has been selected by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to find ways of producing more of the drug.
iBio contracted with Caliber Bio in a long term agreement in 2013. The agreement would have iBio technology used for the production of ZMapp and other biologic drugs at the Caliber Bio manufacturing facility. The agreement would allow the two companies to partner with third parties for the production of other biotherapeutic drugs and vaccines.
iBioLaunch is the iBio platform that allows for the production of large quantities of plant based drugs, which include monoclonal antibodies. Caliber is very likely to employ the technology if they are awarded the contract for ZMapp production.
ZMapp was previously produced at the Reynolds American RAI tobacco plant facility in Owensboro, Kentucky. Nevertheless, the process is long and despite dedicating the plant's full capacity for the production of ZMapp, only about 20 doses are expected to be produced this year. According to iBio Chief Executive Officer, Robert Kay, iBio could produce as much as 100 kilograms of ZMapp annually. Kay estimates that the quantity would be enough to supply 20,000 patients.
iBio stock has had a tremendous run since Ebola began spreading outside of Africa. The stock has gone from $0.60 per share at the beginning of the month, to its recent price of $2.70. The stock traded as low as $0.24 earlier this year. The effectiveness of ZMapp in the treatment of Ebola is significant and its production is a key element in combating the virus in the United States, which would continue to support iBio's stock price.
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Dr. Thomas A. Medsger Jr. Joins iBio Clinical Advisory Board
Medsger is internationally recognized for his work in systemic sclerosis.
iBio Receives European Patent Allowances for Protein Expression Technology
Two patents will cover "Systems and Methods for Clonal Expression in Plants".
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