2014 Biotech Investing
Don't Fall For This Scam!
October is over, and I couldn't be happier.
Don't get me wrong; I don't mind dressing up in costume and handing out candy, and I enjoy guzzling pints of pumpkin ale.
What I don't appreciate, however, is the offensive amount of pink I'm forced to deal with starting on the first of the month through Halloween.
Now, before you write me off as completely insensitive, let me explain why I can't help but shake my head at Breast Cancer Awareness Month...
The White House, the NFL, and just about every media platform site got in on the action last month, showing off how benevolent they are by donning pink shirts, pink shoes, pink socks, and pink ribbons on their lapels. On the surface, this seems like a wonderful way to spread awareness and raise money for a cause.
The truth is the majority of the campaign is ultimately self-serving.
It may come as surprise to many of you, but the vast majority of donations received in October are used to support fundraising organizations and the salaries of those who run them — not breast cancer research.
Take NFL pink merchandise, for example: A mere 8.1% of total sales went to cancer research this year. So while fans think their $100 is going to support a cause they care about, $90 of that is going to boost someone's bottom line.
The reality is wearing pink doesn't cure cancer nearly as much as it boosts someone's charitable image.
Charity is only charitable when it's selfless. Promoting a color to boast about your benevolence hardly fits the bill.
Of course, some will argue that the root of the campaign is education and awareness.
But to be honest, I don't see much of that happening, either. The sad reality is that the majority of breast cancer awareness campaigning is superficial and misdirected...
First, we're not being educated about potential breakthroughs in treatment and how to support this research directly. Instead, we're given a pink ribbon and sent on our way.
Second, we continue to focus primarily on breast cancer despite the fact that other cancers have a much higher prevalence and death rate. Breast cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the United States.
It's possible that catchphrases like "Save the Boobies" are more easily marketable... or perhaps it's due to the fact that society tends to treat women as the more delicate gender...
Regardless, you would think a disease like prostate cancer would receive at least comparable attention, considering how much more common it is.
Save the Balls
I'll be the first to say this doesn't have quite the same ring as, "Save the Boobies" — but that doesn't mean we should let advancements in prostate cancer continue to fly under the radar.
Not only are these advancements important for the health of hundreds of thousands of men; but they are also potentially profitable for those who invest early (more on that another day).
Prostate cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer deaths among men in the United States.
In 2013, approximately 240,000 men will be diagnosed; 30,000 will lose their lives to this disease.
To top it all off, current methods of diagnosis are absolutely shameful...
If you choose to undergo prostate cancer screening, your doctor will test your levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) with a simple blood test. If your PSA levels are abnormally high, this is seen as possible sign of cancer, and your doctor will move forward with a digital rectal exam (DRE).
While this might seem like standard medical practice, it's actually the most highly criticized screening method in health care.
The problem is that even in conjunction, PSA tests and DRE are not reliably predictive of life-threatening cancer. In fact, the screening process rings a false alarm an astonishing 75% of the time.
The result of all this has been two decades of over-diagnosis and over-treatment in the form of painful and unnecessary prostate biopsies — at $2,000 a pop.
Fortunately, one public company will be launching a new test in 2014 that is set to completely disrupt prostate screening as we know it.
Better yet, the revenue potential for this test is absolutely massive — and this company's shareholders are in line to reap the benefits.
After a few months reviewing this potential breakthrough, I can confidently say the facts are absolutely compelling:
- A reduction in biopsies by 413 per 1,000 men with elevated PSA
- Only 1 of 43 high-grade cancers unnoticed
- Over 10,000 men tested in clinical trials
- Could be used in conjunction with 30 million PSA tests conducted per year
- Billions in potential annual revenue
- Massive insider buying
The most exciting thing in all of this is that after over a decade of research, this test is finally scheduled to hit the market in 2014.
Only a small group of people knows the name of this test today — but in just a few years, it will be a household name...
Turning progress to profits,
Energy and Capital's tech expert, Jason Stutman has worked as an educator in mathematics, technology, and science... Before joining the Energy and Capital team, Jason served on multiple technology development committees, writing and earning grants in educational and behavioral technologies. Jason offers readers keen insights on prominent tech trends while exposing otherwise unnoticed opportunities.
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