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A very promising company
BIocurex research report
BioCurex Uncovers New Cancer Marker
By: Patrick Pawling
Sometimes investors discover companies they can support for reasons that include financial promise and a lot more. BioCurex is one of those companies. It appears BioCurex has uncovered something that could well be called a medical Holy Grail: a way to detect and treat many types of cancers.
Incorporated in Texas and with facilities in Richmond, British Columbia, BioCurex (OTC: BOCX.PK) is a biotechnology company with impressive leadership and a promising and proprietary technology for cancer diagnosis, imaging and therapy. The company is so rich with promise that some potential investors may think: “Too good to be true.” Read on and decide for yourself.
After extensive due diligence, Abbott Laboratories recently signed an agreement for semi-exclusive rights to commercialize products using BioCurex technology. This is validation that the company is past the point of “scientific risk.” Abbot does not make an investment in a company unless it has carried out substantial technical due diligence and intends to reap hundreds of millions of dollars.
One market for BioCurex technology (testing for several types of cancers, including lung and breast) is estimated at up to $2 billion annually. One example of a portion of that market is PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) testing, estimated at $450 million. Tests also indicate RECAF can be used for screening Pap smears for cervical cancer. In North America, this represents a market of over $1 billion. If BioCurex’s technology is added to the Pap test, then revenue from Pap smears alone could reach ten million dollars.
Tests show BioCurex technology successfully detects more than 90% of all cancers in blood or tissue samples, significantly better than any present method.
Once revenues start coming in the company will be self-sustaining. It won’t have to look for outside money to complete the rest of its platform technology.
One of the amazing aspects of the BioCurex technology is that it can be used for detection AND treatment, giving the company and its investors a chance to tap two huge markets. This could be very significant, considering the prevalence of cancer. There are presently about 9 million cancer patients in North America alone. About 1.3 million more develop cancer each year and more than 500,000 die each year. In all, one in three people will develop some kind of cancer in their lifetime.
Similarly, the rising cost of health care may work in favor of BioCurex. Pressure is mounting for cost-effective screening and testing, because it’s much less expensive to treat cancer early. And the easier it is for those tests to be done, the more people will want them. Again, this works to the advantage of BioCurex because its diagnostics are relatively simple to administer.
The Market Size.
Initially, BioCurex is aiming at a market of as much as $2 billion annually for diagnostics alone. That's impressive, but taking a broader view, the numbers look even better. The National Cancer Institute estimates the overall annual costs for cancer in the U.S. at $190 billion. About half of the direct costs are related to the treatment of breast, lung and prostate cancers, which BioCurex's technology can detect. On a global basis, costs associated with cancer-related illnesses are estimated at more than $250 billion.
How It Works.
BioCurex's patented technology locates a molecule on the surface of cancer cells that is not present in normal cells. This marker, called RECAF, can be used in blood and tissue tests to determine if cancer is recurring or if new cancers are developing. Of particular importance: Preliminary tests show RECAF may make it possible to specifically target and treat cancer with antibodies and drugs without damaging healthy cells.
RECAF appears to work on every cancer studied so far, which includes cancers of the breast, lung, stomach and prostate, and leukemia, among others. It is important to note that RECAF is more sensitive and specific for prostate cancers than the present test, PSA, and is able to detect breast and lung cancers - for which there are presently no other performing markers.
Recent partnership Breakthroughs.
The scientific and corporate communities are showing great interest in BioCurex and its technology.
In addition to Abbott's agreement, the company is also negotiating with other global healthcare partners to capture a majority of the blood testing market for cancer. It's important to note that BioCurex is still free to pursue its own distribution plans for potentially lucrative types of RECAF testing and therapeutics – and it is doing so.
The company is also collaborating with the Center for Cancer Care in Goshen, Indiana, in developing and evaluating its RECAF technology. This will consist of three phases: First will be the continuation and expansion of the applications of serum and biopsy tests using RECAF. The second phase will focus on imaging applications using RECAF to detect the location of cancerous tumors in the body. And the third phase includes clinical trials in which RECAF will be used as a way to specifically deliver therapeutic agents to destroy the cancer cells with minimal damage to normal tissues.
"This collaboration represents a significant strategic move for us," said Dr. Moro-Vidal, CEO of BioCurex. "Once we finalize the process of licensing the diagnostic applications of the RECAF technology, we shall move the focus of the company to its next logical level, which includes cancer imaging and therapy. We have already started research efforts in this direction and the initial results are encouraging."
Other licensing and research agreements may follow as well, thanks to the semi-exclusive nature of the company's agreements.
"We are also actively pursuing the licensing of other blood tests, such as the RIA (radioimmunoassay) format we have developed, as well as a rapid test format similar to the well-known pregnancy tests," added Gerald Wittenberg, Chairman of the Board. "Our firm belief is that these tests could be readily implemented in many countries."
Management and Medical Advisors.
Only a handful of cancer markers have been discovered in the last 40 years. BioCurex's medical advisors have been at the forefront of several.
In fact, Dr. Moro-Vidal, Dr. Gold, and Dr. Uriel have been invited to make oral presentations on the future of cancer markers and RECAF technology at the 2005 meeting of the International Society of Oncodevelopmental Biology and Medicine (ISOBM).
Dr. Moro-Vidal: Founder and president of BioCurex, Dr. Moro-Vidal discovered the universal cancer marker RECAF, the core of BioCurex's technology. He also developed a new diagnostic system (conductivity ELISA) and a microchip that was used by NASA in space.
Phil Gold, C.C., O.Q., M.D., Ph.D.: Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board and Director, Dr. Gold has earned four degrees, including a Ph.D from McGill University. He helped usher in the modern era of human tumor marker research. The assay for CEA he developed is the most used marker for human cancer diagnosis and monitoring. He currently is the Physician-in-Chief, Department of Medicine, The Montreal General Hospital.
Garri Abelev, Ph.D, M.D: In 1963, he and his colleagues first described the association between alfa-fetoprotein (AFP) and liver cancer. This was the first cancer marker of clinical use ever reported. His work launched the entire field of tumor markers. He continues his work in his laboratory at the Cancer Research Center, Immunochemistry Division in Moscow, Russia.
Jose Uriel, MD, Ph.D.: Dr. Uriel has worked at the Pasteur Institute and was research director of the prestigious CNRS. He also worked at the Laboratory of Protein Chemistry at the French Research Cancer Institute of which he was later the Director. In 1970, he received the prestigious Rosen award in cancer research and in 1972 became laureate of the French National Academy of Medicine (Leon Berat prize).
Taiki Tamaoki, Ph.D.: A molecular biologist; it was in his laboratory that alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) was cloned for the first time. He is regarded as the worldwide authority in AFP structure.
Elliot Alpert, Ph.D: One of the pioneers in the field of AFP and cancer markers, he is in charge of the workshop for evaluation of cancer markers for the International Society of Oncodevelopmental Biology and Medicine.
Michel Sadelain, MD, Ph.D.: The laboratory he manages is actively involved in genetic engineering applied to the immune system, a combination of fields that will prove valuable for future work on RECAF.
Gerald Wittenberg, D.M.D., MS.: Chairman of the Board and Secretary Treasurer, Dr. Wittenberg has extensive experience in financing new companies.
During the next 12-18 months the company plans to:
License its blood tests to other global healthcare companies.
Develop and license a RECAF-based test for automated PAP smear tests.
Commence development of therapeutics and imaging applications based on RECAF.
Develop collaborations and strategic alliances that will be instrumental in carrying out Phase I, II, and III clinical trials.
License its proprietary RIA RECAF test to reference laboratories.
Move to a more appropriate venue for listing its shares.
In the past two years, BioCurex has concentrated on strengthening its finances and developing tissue and blood tests to detect cancer. The result: increased shareholder value and a solid platform for growth.
Revenues will come from up-front payments from licensees and milestone payments as products come to market. The projections for the royalties from diagnostics exceeds $100 million once the various tests are licensed and distributed by major pharmaceutical companies.
The stock's 52-week range is $.46 to $2.35. At press time it was trading at $1.15. With the licensing announcements coming more often, and the promise of the testing and research, now may be the time to invest in the future of cancer detection and treatment. Somebody is going to hit a home run in cancer, and BioCurex is stepping up to the plate - with Abbott Laboratories as its first partner.
Reasons to Consider Investing in BioCurex.
Patented and proprietary RECAF technology.
Licensing agreement with Abbott Laboratories, the world's largest diagnostics healthcare company
Technology platform for diagnostics and therapeutics
First mover advantage
Renowned scientific team
Favorable regulatory environment and approval process
Significant and growing markets with huge demand for the technology
Tests easily implemented by physicians
Opportunity to reduce human suffering and develop a profitable investment
RECAF: a New Tumor Marker
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