Fish-Oil Pills Lure Drugmakers Even as Benefits Unproven
Comment of the Day

June 28 2013

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Fish-Oil Pills Lure Drugmakers Even as Benefits Unproven

This article by Allison Connolly for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section
Heart disease remains the world's biggest killer, accounting for 30 percent of global deaths, even as statins and other treatments have become more widely used. Now that Lipitor and many other statins have cheaper, generic competitors, drugmakers are looking for new ways to tackle the array of conditions that can lead to heart disease, including coupling triglyceride treatments with existing cholesterol-lowering pills for a one-two punch.

The number of people with elevated triglyceride levels is rising rapidly across the world, due in part to the increasing prevalence of obesity and diabetes, AstraZeneca Chief Executive Officer Pascal Soriot said when he bought fish-oil pill maker Omthera Pharmaceuticals Inc. for $443 million last month. ?There is a clear need for effective and convenient alternatives to some of the existing treatments.

Eoin Treacy's view Subscriber's have kindly been sending through accounts of their experience with statins and other healthcare products for more than a week now, highlighting just how emotive a subject this is. The holy grail of personalised medicine holds great promise but has not yet arrived. In the meantime heart disease is likely to remain a powerful investment.

Among the companies mentioned in the above article GlaxoSmithKline has the most interesting chart pattern. It. pulled back sharply from its May peak but found support this week in the region of the 200-day MA and a sustained move below it would be required to check potential for some higher to lateral ranging with a view to medium-term recovery.

While Bristol Myers Squibb has a broad suite of products, one of its area of focus is combating heart disease. The share completed an almost decade long base in 2011 and formed an 18-month first step above it before reasserting demand dominance a year ago. It had become quite overextended relative to the 200-day MA by May and the reaction to date is relatively similar sized to that posted in January. A sustained below the 200-day MA, currently near $40 would be required to begin to question medium-term upside potential.

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