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Ray Blanco

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Nvidia Grows Mobile Business, Universal Display Enjoys Record Quarter

Nvidia’s (NASDAQ:NVDA) diversification into mobile computing technology is beginning to pay off. As you know, the company has long been the leader in graphical computing technology. The company, however, has also moved aggressively into mobile computing. It recently flexed its technology muscles when it launched Tegra 3, the world’s first quad-core mobile processor. Based on...

Back From Vancouver With Portfolio Updates

I had a wonderful time meeting many of you in Vancouver last week. I enjoyed spending time with attendees from past years, as well as making some new friends. Now that I'm back, I'd like to update you on some of our biotech recommendations. Following on U.S. regulatory approval earlier this year, Vertex (NASDAQ: VRTX) just received approval in Europe for Kalydeco. By correcting for defective proteins regulating the transport of ions across cellular membranes, Kalydeco is the first-ever available cystic fibrosis therapy attacking the roots of the disease.

It’s the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine)

With doom and gloom headlines dominating the financial news, what should investors be doing? Is the sky truly falling? Is it the end of the world as we know it? Is it time to head for the hills? At this year's Agora Financial Investment Symposium, we'll be hearing the expert opinions of leading international speakers. As in past years, Patrick Cox has prepared a thought-provoking and contrarian presentation in his signature style. What follows is a sneak preview.

The Race Between Science and Politics

“There are two consequences in history; an immediate one, which is instantly recognized, and one in the distance, which is not at first perceived.” -- Frederic Bastiat The weather has finally settled down around here. Tropical Storm Debby treated us to rain for days on end. Strong winds and pounding rains have reduced my tomato and pepper patch to tatters. Internet connectivity has been hit or miss, but thankfully, it's all over now, although some areas further north are still waiting on floodwaters to recede. This morning, the big news was the Supreme Court's ruling upholding Obamacare. Stocks, already down for the day, plummeted further on the news. Emerging biotechnology companies appear to be among the hardest hit.

A Pharmaceutical Guru’s Huge Buy, and Why You Should Too

Patrick Cox and I spent the better part of Wednesday afternoon visiting Teva's chairman, Dr. Phillip Frost, at his Miami office. Dr. Frost became vice chairman of Teva upon its acquisition of Miami pharmaceutical company Ivax Corp., which he sold to Teva in 2006 for over $7 billion. He became chairman in 2010, and was re-elected to the position last month. This personal visit was, to put it mildly, a wonderful opportunity to learn what is on the mind of one of the pharmaceutical industry's great investors and leaders.

Seattle Genetics Data Seals the Deal for Advanced Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

Last week, several of the cancer warriors in our portfolio presented new data on the power of their molecular wares at ASCO. Seattle Genetics (NASDAQ:SGEN) just followed up on its own presentation this week with new data for Adcetris, its lead compound. Aimed at cancer that expresses a target called CD30, Adcetris received approval from the FDA for late-stage lymphoma last year. The new data are for Adcetris used to treat relapsed or resistant Hodgkin's lymphoma in patients who have received stem cell transplants. Seventy-five percent of patients showed a positive response to therapy, while a full third showed their condition completely clearing up.

ASCO Participants Present From the Front Lines of the War on Cancer

This week, the big news in biotechnology was the annual ASCO meeting. No, ASCO isn't a stock ticker symbol. It is an acronym for the American Society of Clinical Oncology, which hosted the biggest cancer research event of the year this week. Several of our biotechnology companies presented new clinical data at this year's event. I am pleased to say there is a lot of good portfolio news to update you on. Along with Seattle Genetics, ImmunoGen's platform is a revolutionary new technology that links engineered antibodies to toxic payloads. When the antibody is designed to target a molecule carried by cancer cells, it penetrates the cell. Once inside, the toxin – a very powerful chemotherapy compound – is released to kill the cell. The advantage of this approach is that unlike traditional chemotherapy, the damage to healthy cells is reduced or eliminated.

Isis and Exelixis Near the Finish Line; Vertex Data Restated, but Still Strong

By now, you should have received our latest issue. The company, Clovis Oncology (NASDAQ:CLVS), has a veteran management team with a proven ability to generate revenues from neglected therapeutics in record time. I really like Clovis' lead compound, CO-101, which takes a standard chemotherapeutic and makes it work better. Pancreatic cancer patients will like it too. This young company has a solid business plan and, if it executes as I expect, should be begin generating revenues late next year.

Vertex Stuns the World With New Clinical Data

Brick by brick, the scientists and management at Vertex Pharmaceuticals are building a biotechnology powerhouse. Last year, Vertex laid the foundation with the first new hepatitis C therapy in over a decade. Incivek now dominates the market for this hard-to-cure, liver-destroying virus.Compared with previous care standards, Vertex's drug boosts cure rates by 50% while halving the amount of time patients need to receive therapy -- which is a very tough regimen. In the process, Vertex has been transformed from a company with nearly no revenues to one earning well over $1 billion a year.