There is truly no shortage of vaccine news this week. On Wednesday it is Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) stealing the spotlight, as INO stock continues to rally.
Behind the move higher is likely a presentation from CEO Joseph Kim at the H.C. Wainwright Annual Global Investment Conference. On Monday, Kim shared a handful of updates about INO-4800, a novel coronavirus vaccine candidate that is currently in Phase 1 trials.
During the presentation he shared that a peer-reviewed paper from the Phase 1 trials could be ready in the next few weeks. Additionally, he shared that later-stage human trials could begin later this month. Inovio is simply waiting for approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Up until now, the company has been a smaller — but still very exciting — player in the vaccine race. Inovio completed vaccine trials in small animals and non-human primates. It has also launched global trials of its vaccine candidate in South Korea and has begun recruiting participants in China. The U.S. trial features 40 healthy individuals between the ages of 18 and 50.
Are you wondering why this presentation has had INO stock climbing higher since Monday afternoon? Sure, there was no real news. But investors are very excited about what Kim had to say.
INO Stock Pops on Coronavirus Vaccine Plans
Part of the rally — which has INO stock up 15% on Wednesday — is following the trend we have seen this week. Underdog vaccine players like Vaxart (NASDAQ:VXRT) and Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) are simply exciting. Investors want to benefit from a pure play on the coronavirus race, and they want to ride a volatile stock to the highs. Inovio shares started 2020 near $3, and has hit highs over $30.
INO stock has since come back down to the $15-$16 range.
As Kim said, more insight to its Phase 1 trial could come in the next few weeks. Any indication that its vaccine is effective, despite not being as far along as rivals in the research process, could still be a major upside catalyst. It is clear that the market is just not ready to walk away.
On the date of publication, Sarah Smith did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.
Sarah Smith is a Web Content Producer for InvestorPlace.com.