Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014

Investors love stocks that consistently beat the Street without getting ahead of their fundamentals and risking a meltdown. The best stocks offer sustainable market-beating gains, with robust and improving financial metrics that support strong price growth. Does Crocs (NASDAQ: CROX  ) fit the bill? Let’s look at what its recent results tell us about its potential for future gains.

What we’re looking for
The graphs you’re about to see tell Crocs’ story, and we’ll be grading the quality of that story in several ways:

Growth: Are profits, margins, and free cash flow all increasing? Valuation: Is share price growing in line with earnings per share? Opportunities: Is return on equity increasing while debt to equity declines? Dividends: Are dividends consistently growing in a sustainable way?

What the numbers tell you
Now, let’s look at Crocs’ key statistics:

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Ophthotech Corp (OPHT)

Ophthotech Corporation, incorporated on January 05, 2007, is a biopharmaceutical company specializing in the development of therapeutics to treat diseases of the eye. The Company’s advanced product candidate is Fovista, which the Company is developing for use in combination with anti-VEGF drugs that represent the current standard of care for the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD). Wet AMD is a serious disease of the central portion of the retina, known as the macula, which is responsible for detailed central vision and color perception. It is characterized by abnormal new blood vessel formation and growth, referred to as neovascularization, which results in blood vessel leakage, retinal distortion and scar formation. If untreated, the progressive retinal damage results in rapid, irreversible and severe vision loss. Wet AMD is the cause of blindness in patients over the age of 55 in the United States and the European Union.

The anti-V EGF market for the treatment of wet AMD consists predominantly of two drugs that are approved for marketing and primarily prescribed for the treatment of wet AMD, Lucentis and Eylea, and off-label use of the cancer therapy Avastin. The use of anti-VEGF drugs has significantly improved visual outcomes for patients with wet AMD who have been treated with these drugs as compared to untreated patients.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By John Udovich]

    Yesterday, small cap biotech Acceleron Pharma Inc (NASDAQ: XLRN) rose 9.76% plus shares are up 183.6% for retail investors since its September IPO, meaning its worth taking a closer look at the stock along with the performance of other biotech IPOs like BIND Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: BIND), Ophthotech Corp (NASDAQ: OPHT) and Foundation Medicine Inc (NASDAQ: FMI) which also debuted at the same time.

  • [By John Udovich]

    The biotech sector has been pretty exciting this year with small cap biotech stocks Prana Biotechnology Limited (NASDAQ: PRAN) and TNI BioTech (OTCMKTS: TNIB) having recently produced noteworthy news for investors while Acceleron Pharma, Inc (NASDAQ: XLRN), Ophthotech (NASDAQ: OPHT) and BIND Therapeutics (NASDAQ: BIND) have just set term sheets for their upcoming IPOs. Just consider all of the following recent news:

  • [By John Udovich]

    If you have not been watching the biotech sector lately, you should start paying attention as the sector along with small cap biotech stocks like Cell Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: CTIC), BIND Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: BIND) and TNI BioTech (OTCMKTS: TNIB) continue to produce a steady stream of good news for investors thanks to positive industry trends. Moreover, Ophthotech Corp (NASDAQ: OPHT), Foundation Medicine Inc (NASDAQ: FMI), Evoke Pharma and Fate Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: FATE) are this week’s biotech IPOs that will no doubt be watched closely by Wall Street and industry observers in general. With that in mind, consider the following biotech news or recent articles about the industry and the small cap players in it:

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: NeoStem Inc (NBS)

NeoStem, Inc., incorporated on September 18, 1980, operates in cellular therapy industry. Cellular therapy addresses the process by which new cells are introduced into a tissue to prevent or treat disease, or regenerate damaged or aged tissue, and consists of a separate therapeutic technology platform in addition to pharmaceuticals, biologics and medical devices. The Company’s business model includes the development of novel cell therapy products, as well as operating a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) providing services to others in the regenerative medicine industry. Progenitor Cell Therapy, LLC, the Company’s wholly owned subsidiary (PCT), is a CDMO in the cellular therapy industry. PCT has provided pre-clinical and clinical current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) development and manufacturing services to over 100 clients advancing regenerative medicine product candidates through rigorous quality standards all the way through to human te sting.

PCT has two cGMP, cell therapy research, development, and manufacturing facilities in New Jersey and California, serving the cell therapy community with integrated and regulatory compliant distribution capabilities. Its core competencies in the cellular therapy industry include manufacturing of cell therapy-based products, product and process development, cell and tissue processing, regulatory support, storage, distribution and delivery and consulting services. The Company’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Amorcyte, LLC (Amorcyte) is developing its own cell therapy, AMR-001, for the treatment of cardiovascular disease. AMR-001 represents its clinically advanced therapeutic product candidate and enrollment for its Phase II PreSERVE clinical trial to investigate AMR-001’s safety and efficacy in preserving heart function after a heart attack in a particular type of post Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI) patients.

Through the Company’s subsidiary, A thelos Corporation (Athelos), the Company is collaborating w! ith Becton-Dickinson in early stage clinical development of a therapy utilizing T-cells, collaborating for autoimmune and inflammatory conditions, including but not limited to, graft vs. host disease, type 1 diabetes, steroid resistant asthma, lupus, multiple sclerosis and solid organ transplant rejection. The Company’s pre-clinical assets include its Very Small Embryonic Like (VSEL) Technology platform. The Company has basic research and development capabilities, manufacturing facilities on both the east and west coast of the United States.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Roberto Pedone]

    Another under-$10 biopharmaceutical player that’s starting to trend within range of triggering a big breakout trade is Neostem (NBS), engages in the development of proprietary cell therapy products. This stock has been hit hard by the sellers during the last three months, with shares off by 22%.

    If you take a look at the chart for Neostem, you’ll notice that this stock has recently spiked higher back above both its 50-day moving average at $6.41 and its 200-day moving average of $6.60 a share. This move has also pushed shares of NBS back above some near-term overhead resistance levels at $6.57 to $6.98 a share. That move is quickly pushing NBS within range of triggering another breakout trade above some key near-term overhead resistance.

    Market players should now look for long-biased trades in NBS if it manages to break out above some near-term overhead resistance at $7.22 a share with high volume. Look for a sustained move or close above that level with volume that hits near or above its three-month average action 327,514 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then NBS will set up to re-fill some of its previous gap down zone from October that started just above $8 a share. If that that gap gets filled with volume, then NBS could easily tag its next major overhead resistance levels at $9 to $9.50 a share, or even its 52-week high at $9.89 a share.

    Traders can look to buy NBS off weakness to anticipate that breakout and simply use a stop that sits right below its 50-day moving average of $6.41 a share, or near more support at $6 a share. One can also buy NBS off strength once it takes out $7.22 a share with volume and then simply use a stop that sits a comfortable percentage from your entry point.

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    NeoStem (NYSE: NBS) priced an underwritten public offering of 5,000,000 shares of common stock at an offering price of $7.00 per share. NeoStem shares dipped 9.44% to $7.10 in after-hours trading.

  • [By John Udovich]

    Summer and the slow news for the market that usually comes with it is over with and both stem cell researchers or small  cap stem cell stocks like Advanced Cell Technology, Inc (OTCBB: ACTC), Neuralstem, Inc (NYSEMKT: CUR), NeoStem Inc (NASDAQ: NBS), International Stem Cell Corp (OTCMKTS: ISCO) and BioRestorative Therapies (OTCBB: BRTX) having news for investors and traders alike. Consider the following:

  • [By John Udovich]

    The results of a recent Pew Center Poll regarding attitudes towards abortion and various forms of stem cell research could be a good sign for the stem cell industry along with small cap stem cell stocks like StemCells Inc (NASDAQ: STEM), NeoStem Inc (NASDAQ: NBS), Neuralstem, Inc (NYSEMKT: CUR), International Stem Cell Corp (OTCMKTS: ISCO) and BioRestorative Therapies (OTCBB: BRTX). Basically, Americans think that having an abortion is a moral issue with 49% of American adults believing abortion is morally wrong, 23% view it not as a moral issue and and 15% view it as morally acceptable. However and when Americans were asked about issues surrounding human embryos, such as stem cell research or in vitro fertilization, as a matter of morality, their views were different.

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Covidien PLC (COV)

Covidien Public Limited Company is engaged in the development, manufacture and sale of healthcare products for use in clinical and home settings. It operates its businesses through three segments: Medical Devices, which includes the development, manufacture and sale of endomechanical instruments, energy devices, soft tissue repair products, vascular products, oximetry and monitoring products, airway and ventilation products; Pharmaceuticals, which includes the development, manufacture and distribution of specialty pharmaceuticals and active pharmaceutical ingredients, and Medical Supplies, SharpSafety products and original equipment manufacturer products. In May 2012, it acquired Newport Medical Instruments, Inc. In May 2012, it acquired superDimension, Ltd. In June 2012, the Company acquired Oridion Systems Ltd. In October 2012, its Mallinckrodt acquired CNS Therapeutics, Inc. In January 2013, the Company acquired CV Ingenuity. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Peter Stephens]

    As mentioned, sector peers such as Stryker (NYSE: SYK  ) and Covidien (NYSE: COV  ) are slightly ahead of St. Jude on EPS growth forecasts, with both companies forecast to increase EPS by 8% in 2014. Meanwhile, they are expected to increase EPS by 10% and 11%, respectively, in 2015. (Note that St. Jude and Stryker have calendar year-ends and Covidien has a September year-end.)

  • [By Laura Brodbeck]

    Friday

    Earnings Expected From: Covidien plc. (NYSE: COV), Eldorado Gold Corporation (NYSE: EGO), Vaalco Energy Inc. (NYSE: EGY) Economic Releases Expected:  US Wholesale Trade, US non-farm payrolls

    Posted-In: Bank Of England European Central Bank Federal ReserveNews Eurozone Previews Global Economics Federal Reserve Markets Trading Ideas Best of Benzinga

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Therapeutic Solutions International Inc (TSOI)

Therapeutic Solutions International, Inc., formerly Friendly Auto Dealers, Inc., incorporated on August 6, 2007, is a development-stage company. The Company is focused in establishing itself as a specialized brand promotional merchandising company. It would identify a range of casual apparel and consumer products that can be manufactured and resold with the product endorsement of corporate logos. In April 2011, the Company acquired Splint Decisions Inc.

The Company concentrates its efforts in the People’s Republic of China and its retail automotive industry. As of December 31, 2009, the Company had no operations and had not generated any revenues.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Peter Graham]

    Small cap medical device or biotech related stocks Therapeutic Solutions International Inc (OTCMKTS: TSOI), diaDexus, Inc (OTCMKTS: DDXS) and Spherix Inc (NASDAQ: SPEX) have been getting some attention lately in various investment newsletters with the good news being that it appears none are the subject of paid promotions from stock promoters. So why are these three stocks all of a sudden getting some attention and what else do you need to know about them before you make a short or a long term bet on one? Here is a closer look at the whole picture and what you might be missing:

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Cannabis Science Inc (CBIS)

Cannabis Science, Inc., incorporated on May 4, 2007, is a development-stage company. The Company is engaged in the creation of cannabis-based medicines, both with and without psychoactive properties, to treats disease and the symptoms of disease, as well as for general health maintenance. On February 9, 2012, the Company acquired GGECO University, Inc. (GGECO). On March 21, 2012, the Company acquired Cannabis Consulting Inc. (CCI Group).

The Company is engaged in medical marijuana research and development. The Company works with world authorities on phytocannabinoid science targeting critical illnesses, and adheres to scientific methodologies to develop, produce, and commercialize phytocannabinoid-based pharmaceutical products.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Bryan Murphy]

    Much like Nuvilex, Cannabis Science Inc. (OTCMKTS:CBIS) appears to simply be another conventional biotech outfit. And, truth be told, that’s what CBIS is. It just happens to be developing two drugs based on cannabinoids… one to reat HIV/AIDS, and the other to treat cancer. Both drugs are in preclinical trials right now, so an actual marketable product is still years down the road for Cannabis Science Inc. But, as a legitimate biotechnology that isn’t aiming to simply fuel tokers’ needs, it’s not going to hit any regulatory or law-enforcement roadblocks.

  • [By John Udovich]

    One almost has to feel sorry for old school small cap marijuana stocks like Medical Marijuana Inc (OTCMKTS: MJNA), Cannabis Science Inc (OTCMKTS: CBIS) and Hemp Inc (OTCMKTS: HEMP) which have been around awhile and increasingly have to contend with the marijuana newswires getting flooded with news from every small cap OTC stock along with your mother’s uncle’s fifth cousin trying to grab a piece of the marijuana hype. We alone had two specific articles (Small Cap Marijuana Stocks Aiming for a High With News: MCIG, FRTD & SKTO and Four Marijuana Small Caps Giving Investors Highs or Lows: ENRT, VMGI, NVLX & RTXBQ) covering about half a dozen different wannabe marijuana stocks with news for just this week along with another article (Putting My Call on Latteno Food in Perspective, Take-Two (LATF, MJNA, ERBB)) about another small cap that’s infusing food with weed. 

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Galena Biopharma Inc (GALE)

Galena Biopharma, Inc. (Galena), formerly RXi Pharmaceuticals Corporation, incorporated on April 3, 2006, is a biotechnology company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing therapies addressing unmet medical needs using targeted biotherapeutics. The Company is pursuing the development of cancer therapeutics using peptide-based immunotherapy products, including its main product candidate, NeuVaxTM (E75), for the treatment of breast cancer and other tumors. NeuVax is a peptide-based immunotherapy intended to reduce the recurrence of breast cancer in low-to-intermediate HER2-positive breast cancer patients not eligible for trastuzumab (Herceptin; Genentech/Roche). On January 19, 2012, the Company initiated enrollment in its Phase 3 PRESENT clinical trial for NeuVax (E75 peptide plus GM-CSF) vaccine in low-to-intermediate HER2 1+ and 2+ breast cancer patients in the adjuvant setting to prevent recurrence (Clinicaltrials.gov identifier NCT01479244). The Preventio n of Recurrence in Early-Stage, Node-Positive Breast Cancer with Low to Intermediate HER2 Expression with NeuVax Treatment study is a randomized, multicenter, multinational clinical trial that will enroll approximately 700 breast cancer patients. The Company’s Phase 2 trial of NeuVax achieved its primary endpoint of disease-free survival (DFS). On April 13, 2011, the Company completed its acquisition of Apthera, Inc.,(Apthera).

The Company focuses to start a Phase 2 trial comparing NeuVax in combination with trastuzumab (Herceptin) versus trastuzumab, alone, in a 300-patient, randomized study in the adjuvant breast cancer setting. The Company’s second product candidate, Folate Binding Protein-E39 (FBP), is a vaccine, consisting of the peptides E39 and J65, aimed at preventing the recurrence of ovarian, endometrial, and breast cancers. On February 14, 2012, the Company announced the initiation of a Phase 1/2 clinical trial in two gynecological cancers: ovarian and endometrial adenocarcinomas. Folate binding protein has ! very limited tissue distribution and expression in non-malignant tissue and is over-expressed in more than 90% of ovarian and endometrial cancers, as well as in 20% to 50% of breast, lung, colorectal and renal cell carcinomas.

In April 2011, the Company acquired Apthera Inc and its NeuVax product candidate. The Company focuses on developing a pipeline of immunotherapy product candidates for the treatment of various cancers based on the E75 peptide, the advanced of which is NeuVax, which is targeted at preventing the recurrence of breast cancer. NeuVax has had positive Phase 1/2 clinical trial results for the prevention of breast cancer recurrence in patients who have had breast cancer and received the standard of care treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and hormonal therapy as indicated). The Company had also initiated its Phase 3 PRESENT clinical trial of NeuVax for the prevention of breast cancer recurrence in early-stage low-to-intermediate HER2 br east cancer patients. NeuVax directs killer T-cells to target and destroy cancer cells that express HER2/neu, a protein associated with epithelial tumors in breast, ovarian, pancreatic, colon, bladder and prostate cancers. NeuVax is comprised of a HER2/neu-derived peptide called E75. E75 is a nine-amino acid sequence that is immunogenic (produces an immune response) and GM-CSF is a commercially available protein that acts to stimulate and activate components of the immune system such as macrophages and dendritic cells.

The Company also develops novel applications for NeuVax based on preclinical studies and phases 2 clinical trials which suggest that combining NeuVax and trastuzumab (Herceptin; Genentech/Roche) can increase antigen presentation by tumor cells by promoting receptor internalization and subsequent proteosomal degradation of the HER2 protein. The Company also is pursuing additional therapeutic indications for NeuVax that are in Phase 1/2 clinical tri als. RXI-109, is a dermal anti-scarring therapy that targets! connecti! ve tissue growth factor (CTGF) and that may inhibit connective tissue formation in human fibrotic disease.

The Company competes with Roche Laboratories, Inc., Pfizer Inc., Bayer HealthCare AG, Sanofi-Aventis, US, LLC, Amgen, Inc., GlaxoSmithKline plc, Renovo Group plc, CoDa Therapeutics, Inc., Sirnaomics, Inc., FirstString Research, Inc., Merz Pharmaceuticals, LLC, Capstone Therapeutics, Halscion, Inc., Garnet Bio Therapeutics, Inc., AkPharma Inc., Promedior, Inc., Kissei Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Eyegene, Derma Sciences, Inc., Healthpoint Biotherapeutics, Pharmaxon, Excaliard Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Marina Biotech, Inc., Tacere Therapeutics, Inc., Benitec Limited, OPKO Health, Inc., Silence Therapeutics plc, Quark Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Rosetta Genomics Ltd., Lorus Therapeutics, Inc., Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Arrowhead Research Corporation, Regulus Therapeutics Inc. and Santaris.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By James E. Brumley]

    The last two weeks have been absolutely fantastic ones for Galena Biopharma Inc. (NASDAQ:GALE). Shares have soared from $2.37 to the current price of $3.32 – a 40% pop – rewarding investors who had been patiently waiting through late October for the runup to take hold. Congratulations if that’s you. But, if that was you, then now might be a great time to take the money and run with the trade, as GALE looks poised to make a sizeable pullback. More on that in a moment.

  • [By James E. Brumley]

    It may look like little more than a choppy mess with just a quick glance at Galena Biopharma Inc. (NASDAQ:GALE). But, the more you study the chart – and the company – the more you realize there’s enough long-term potential from the company’s pipeline to keep spurring GALE in a generally-upward direction. In fact, the bulls look like they’re on the verge of taking Galena Biopharma out of second gear and putting it into third. As such, it may not be a bad bet at this point.

  • [By Sean Williams]

    The waiting game
    The tables are clearly stacked against small biotech companies developing cancer drugs. History has shown that few (if any) have successfully had the Food and Drug Administration approve a late-stage cancer drug. While mid-stage trials of Galena Biopharma’s (NASDAQ: GALE  ) HER2-targeting breast cancer vaccine have been promising thus far, the chances of an approval seem a long way off.

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Vocera Communications Inc (VCRA)

Vocera Communications, Inc. (Vocera), incorporated on February 16, 2000, is a provider of mobile communication solutions. The Company’s solutions consist of its Voice Communication, Messaging and Care Transition solutions. Its Voice Communication solution, which includes a communication badge and a software platform, enables users to connect with other hospital staff. The Company’s Messaging solution delivers text messages and alerts directly to and from smartphones. Its Care Transition solution is a voice and text-based software application that captures, manages and monitors patient information when responsibility for the patient is transferred or handed-off from one caregiver to another, or when the patient is discharged from the hospital. Users can communicate with others using the Vocera communication badge or through Vocera Connect client applications available for BlackBerry, iPhone and Android smartphones, as well as Cisco wireless Internet protocol (IP) phones and other mobile devices. In January 2014, Vocera Communications Inc announced the acquisition of mVisum.

Communication solution can also be integrated with nurse call and other clinical systems to alert hospital workers to patient needs. The Company’s solutions are deployed in over 800 hospitals and healthcare facilities, including hospital systems, hospitals, and clinics, surgery centers and aged-care facilities. During the year ended December 31, 2011, the Company had shipped over 400,000 communication badges to its customers. The Company outsources the manufacturing of its products. Vocera offers a range of services, including clinical workflow design, wireless assessment, solution configuration, training and project management. It also provides a classroom-based curriculum for systems administrators, information technology professionals and clinical educators. The Company provides around-the-clock technical support to its customers through its support c enters in San Jose, California, and Reading, United Kingdom.!

Voice Communication solution

The Company’s Voice Communication solution consists of a software platform that connects communication devices, including its hands-free, wearable, voice-controlled communication badges, Vocera-branded smartphones and third-party mobile devices that use its software applications to become part of the Vocera system. The system transforms the way mobile workers communicate by enabling them to connect with the right person simply by the name, function or group name of the person they want to reach, often while remaining at the point-of-care. Its system responds to over 100 voice commands.

Vocera’s Voice Communication solution is a software platform that runs on its customers’ Windows-based servers. In addition, it controls the calling and messaging functions of the mobile client devices and maintains profiles for users and groups that enable customization of workflow patterns for each customer. The Compa ny’s communication badge is a wearable device that operates over customers’ wireless fidelity (Wi-Fi) networks. The badge is worn clipped to a shirt or on a lanyard. It can be used to conduct hands-free communication. It enables two-way voice conversations without the need to remember a phone number or use a handset. Its badge also incorporates automatic diagnostic mechanisms that feed data on wireless network performance back to the software platform for reporting and diagnosis of problems. In October 2011, it introduced the Vocera B3000 badge. In 2012, the Company added Cisco wireless IP phones to the list of mobile devices it supports.

Messaging solution

The Company’s Messaging solution delivers text messages, alerts and other information, directly to and from smartphones. Its solution consists of a software platform and client applications that run on BlackBerry, iPhone or Android devices. Its Messaging solution includes a range of client applications, including Alert, Chat and Commander.

Care! Transition Solution

The Company’s platform, which includes modules for patient transfers, shift changes, physician sign-outs and patient and family information exchanges, allows hospitals to standardize and monitor patient hand-offs. Its Care Transition solution can be deployed through either a hosted software-as-a-service model or as a server-on-site model and has been deployed by over 120 hospitals.

The Company competes with Cisco Systems, Ascom and Polycom.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Victor Selva]

    On Dec.24, Mario Gabelli, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GAMCO Investors, Inc. added Communications Systems Inc. (JCS) at an average price of $11.05 and currently holds 330,172 shares of the stock. It was the 5th time he added the stock during this year, which makes me feel that he is betting in favor of a positive future for the consumption of network capacity.
    Recommendations of the Board
    Communications Systems is engaged in the manufacture and sale of modular connecting and wiring devices for voice and data communications, digital subscriber line filters, and structured wiring systems, and through its Transition Networks business unit in the manufacture of media and rate conversion products for telecommunications networks.
    Few months ago the firm announced a series of actions to increase revenues and improve profitability. The first change was to operate as a holding company, monitoring and supporting all the business units: Suttle, Transition Ne tworks (TN) unit and JDL Technologies. With this “new format”, each unit will operate with a high degree of autonomy. This will result in the reduction of labor costs, the emphasizing of accountability in the units as well as better recognition of performance. “While difficult decisions for the Board, we believe the changes we have taken to restructure our parent company as a holding company and to focus on individual business unit performance is in the best interest of our shareholders and will increase shareholder value” said Curtis A. Sampson, the Company’s Board Chair and Interim CEO. Furthermore, strategic investments in the TN unit such as marketing, sales and product development will boost revenues in the future.
    Severe Warning Signs
    Not all are good news, we found three severe warning signs issued by GuruFocus: Piotroski F-Score of 2 is low, which usually implies poor business operation; revenue has been in decline over the past 3 years and operating margi n has been in 5-year

  • [By Evan Niu, CFA]

    What: Shares of Vocera Communications (NYSE: VCRA  ) have gotten slaughtered by 38% today after the company reported earnings.

    So what: Revenue in the first quarter came in at $22.4 million, which translated into a non-GAAP net loss of $0.07 per share. Both figures were significantly worse than the $24.3 million in revenue and $0.02 per share adjusted loss that the Street was expecting. CEO Bob Zollars conceded that management was disappointed with the results.

Hot Medical Stocks To Watch For 2014: Alere Inc (ALR)

Alere Inc., incorporated on May 11, 2001, is a provider of point-of-care diagnostics and services. The Company’s products and services help healthcare practitioners make treatment decisions and improve outcomes for individuals living with chronic disease. The Company’s portfolio also includes a range of health information solutions that access to critical health data, provide clinical decision support, and facilitate performance reporting and analysis. The Company’s segment includes professional diagnostics, health information solutions and consumer diagnostics. The Company distributes its professional diagnostic products to hospitals, reference laboratories, physician offices and other point-of-care settings through an worldwide distribution networks. In February 2013, the Company acquired Epocal, Inc.

Professional Diagnostics

Professional diagnostics are generally designed to assist medical professionals in both preventative and interventiona l medicine, and include testing and monitoring performed in hospitals, laboratories and doctors’ offices and, increasingly, patient self-testing, which the Company defines as testing or monitoring performed at home under the supervision of a medical professional. Professional diagnostic products provide for qualitative or quantitative analysis of patient samples for evidence of a specific medical condition, disease state or toxicological state or to measure response to therapy. The point-of-care market for rapid diagnostic products includes all areas where a patient is assessed or diagnosed, including hospitals, laboratories, physician offices, specialized mobile clinics, emergency rooms, rapid-response laboratories and patient health screening locations.

The Company’s Alere Cholestech LDX System is a point-of-care monitor of blood cholesterol and related lipids which is used to test patients at risk of, or suffering from, heart disease and related conditions. T he Alere Cholestech LDX System makes it possible to provide ! a complete lipid profile with tests for total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL), triglycerides, and glucose. The Company’s Alere INRatio System is an easy-to-use, hand-held blood coagulation monitoring system for use by patients and healthcare professionals in the management of warfarin, a commonly prescribed medication used to prevent blood clots. The Company also offers the epoc Blood Analysis System for bloods gas, electrolyte and metabolite testing, which is manufactured by its recently acquired Epocal division. The epoc (enterprise point-of-care) platform is a point-of-care analysis system which provides Wireless bedside blood gas, electrolyte and metabolite measurement testing solutions and complements the Company’s Alere Triage products in cardiology and emergency room settings.

The Company develops and markets a range of point-of-care tests for influenza A/B, RSV, strep throat, pneumonia , C. difficile, infectious mononucleosis, HIV, herpes simplex virus (HSV-2), hepatitis C (HCV), hepatitis B (HBV), malaria, lyme disease, Chlamydia, H. pylori, rubella and other infectious diseases. The Company’s tests for infectious disease are sold under brand names that include Alere, Alere Determine, Acceava, BinaxNOW, Clearview, DoubleCheckGold, Panbio, SD, TECHLAB and Alere TestPack. In addition to point-of-care products, the Company also offers a line of indirect fluorescent antibody, or IFA, assays for over 20 viral, bacterial and autoimmune diseases, a full line of serology diagnostic products covering a range of disease categories and over 50 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), tests for a range of infectious and autoimmune diseases, as well as a full line of automated instrumentation for processing ELISA tests.

The Company offers laboratory-based testing services throughout Europe under the name Alere Toxicology, formerly Concateno, and in the United States under the names Alere Toxicology Services, or! Alere To! xicology, and Redwood Toxicology Laboratory, or Redwood. The Company offers point-of-care diabetes products, including its Afinion Analyzer System and its NycoCard System. The Company’s Alere Connect products include HealthPAL and HealthCOM.

Health Information Solutions

The Company’s health information solutions are designed to provide physicians with actionable data that allows them to make more decisions in real time, deliver quality care, and put the individuals they treat on a pathway to better health. The Company offers a range of software-based analytics, clinical decision support tools, and accountable cares programs that enable healthcare providers to initiate earlier interventions, personalize treatment plans, lower costs by reducing hospital readmissions, and measure improvements in outcomes at both a patient and population level. With this range of scalable solutions, the Company is able to support healthcare practitioners in the transit ion to accountable care, as well as in meeting the new pay-for-performance guidelines set by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

The Company’s Women’s and Children’s Health division delivers a range of obstetrical care services that range from risk assessments focused on identifying women who may experience pregnancy complications to a neonatal program that supports early infant care management. The Company offers home-based obstetrical monitoring for pregnant women with medical or pregnancy-related problems that could puts their health or the health of their babies at risk. The Company also delivers telephonic and home-based nursing services that support improved clinical outcomes. The Company offers a suite of integrated wellness programs and resources that is designed to reduce participant health risks and healthcare-related costs. The Company’s wellness programs include screening for risk factors associated with chronic disease, particularly tobacco use, poor nutrition, physical inactivity, and chron! ic stress! .

The Company offers services designed to support anticoagulation management for patients who takes warfarin to control their risk for stroke and clotting disorders. Alere Home Monitoring, the Company’s patient self-testing business, assists patients in acquiring home INR monitors and with insurance coverage determinations and provides physicians with a comprehensive model that allows them to incorporate patient self-testing into their practices.

Consumer Diagnostics

The Company’s consumer diagnostic products consist of the Company’s First Check brand of over-the-counter drug tests for at-home testing for up to seven illicit drugs and five prescription drugs, as well as First Check brand over-the-counter tests for cholesterol monitoring. The Company also sells Balance Activ Vaginal Gel directly to consumers and healthcare professionals for the treatment of bacterial vaginosis without antibiotics.

The Company competes with Abbott, Siemens, Beckman Coulter, Johnson & Johnson, Roche, Abaxis Medical Diagnostics, International Technidyne Corporation, INOVA Diagnostics, DiaSorin, Diamedx and Qiagen.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Calling all cash flows
    When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Alere (NYSE: ALR  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.