In a July 31 research note, H.C. Wainwright & Co. analyst Yi Chen reported the market has increasingly adopted Co-Diagnostics Inc.'s (CODX:NASDAQ) Vector Smart North American Mosquito (NAM) test for the presence of West Nile virus, since the test's launch earlier in the month.
Press reports indicate mosquito abatement districts are using the test and thereby improving public health, Chen noted. For instance, the presence of West Nile virus was reported as far west as Utah and as far east as New York this mosquito season.
Chen pointed out how Co-Diagnostics' NAM-W test differentiates itself from other lab tests for the West Nile virus. With NAM-W, the test result is available within a day versus one to two weeks, and more affordably, "thus enabling mosquito control activities to be accurate, efficient and effective."
NAM-W also can detect the presence of St. Louis encephalitis and western equine encephalitis in mosquito populations. Co-Diagnostics is developing a NAM-E test to identify mosquito-borne eastern equine encephalitis in humans. That potentially lethal virus was detected in Florida just this week.
The company also plans to develop a Vector Smart version of its Logix Smart ZDC (Zika-dengue-chikungunya) multiplex test optimized for mosquito populations.
"The company's CoPrimer-based multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test solutions for mosquito-borne diseases are positioned to be the most competitive available on the market and should be increasingly adopted by abatement districts and research institutions alike across the U.S. in the coming months," commented Chen.
Growth for the biotech also should come in increasing sales from Co-Diagnostics' joint venture in India, CoSara Diagnostics. "This business ought to serve as the main driver of topline revenue growth in the near term," Chen indicated.
Another area in which Co-Diagnostics is developing diagnostic products is cancer. Recently, the company achieved positive results from a study to detect cancer mutations, specifically 10 associated with nonsmall cell lung cancer, in circulating free DNA, using its CoPrimer technology. The CoPrimer-based PCR test showed high sensitivity, identifying the mutations at the lowest possible percentage available.
"These results indicate that CoPrimer-based PCR tests can be used for cancer diagnostics, including companion diagnostics for therapeutics as well as monitoring of treatment response and detection of drug resistance," wrote Chen. Immediate uptake of and reimbursement for Co-Diagnostics' cancer diagnostic tests are expected when they hit the market because of the technology's level of sensitivity and specificity and the product's affordability. CoPrimer tests can be conducted on PCR instruments already in the field; no investment in added equipment is needed.
Further updates from Co-Diagnostics on its cancer diagnosis programs are likely in 2019 with introduction of its first cancer test in 2020.
H.C. Wainwright has a Buy rating and a $2 per share price target on Co-Diagnostics, whose stock is currently trading at around $1.24 per share.[NLINSERT]
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Disclosures from H.C. Wainwright & Co., Co-Diagnostics Inc., Company Update, July 31, 2019
Investment Banking Services include, but are not limited to, acting as a manager/co-manager in the underwriting or placement of securities, acting as financial advisor, and/or providing corporate finance or capital markets-related services to a company or one of its affiliates or subsidiaries within the past 12 months.
I, Yi Chen, Ph.D. CFA and Raghuram Selvaraju, Ph.D., certify that 1) all of the views expressed in this report accurately reflect my personal views about any and all subject securities or issuers discussed; and 2) no part of my compensation was, is, or will be directly or indirectly related to the specific recommendation or views expressed in this research report; and 3) neither myself nor any members of my household is an officer, director or advisory board member of these companies.
None of the research analysts or the research analyst's household has a financial interest in the securities of Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (including, without limitation, any option, right, warrant, future, long or short position).
As of June 30 30, 2019 neither the Firm nor its affiliates beneficially own 1% or more of any class of common equity securities of Co-Diagnostics, Inc.
Neither the research analyst nor the Firm has any material conflict of interest in of which the research analyst knows or has reason to know at the time of publication of this research report.
The research analyst principally responsible for preparation of the report does not receive compensation that is based upon any specific investment banking services or transaction but is compensated based on factors including total revenue and profitability of the Firm, a substantial portion of which is derived from investment banking services.
The Firm or its affiliates did receive compensation from Co-Diagnostics, Inc. for investment banking services within twelve months before, and will seek compensation from the companies mentioned in this report for investment banking services within three months following publication of the research report.
H.C. Wainwright & Co., LLC managed or co-managed a public offering of securities for Co-Diagnostics, Inc. during the past 12 months.
The Firm does not make a market in Co-Diagnostics, Inc. as of the date of this research report.
H.C. Wainwright & Co., LLC and its affiliates, officers, directors, and employees, excluding its analysts, will from time to time have long or short positions in, act as principal in, and buy or sell, the securities or derivatives (including options and warrants) thereof of covered companies referred to in this research report.