Today on Barron’s Daily, Lewis Stein, editor of the magazine, takes an in-depth look at moderna, the VC-backed startup drug development company building a centralized global operation to churn out genetically modified organisms and analyze their effects on animal and human health. Moderna has pledged $1 billion to major bio investors in recent years, and has raised more than $550 million through private offerings. Since launching three years ago, the company has validated the idea of bringing therapeutic-grade versions of gene therapy, or CRISPR-Cas9, to drug development and therapeutic manufacturing.
Moderna is just one of several companies working on CRISPR medicines, but they’re currently leading the pack with two mRNA therapies for beta thalassemia and the inherited genetic disorder β-thalassemia major in their pipeline. Speaking with Lewis Stein on the show, the editor says that it’s unclear how much patients will need genetically modified versions of CRISPR in the foreseeable future, but if it is deemed essential for treating patients, its success will hinge on how broadly it’s accepted and monitored.
Elsewhere in Barron’s Daily, Mark Kauffman of Moors & Cabot discusses the rising stock prices for smaller tech companies, particularly those in data security and AI. Tesla, Amazon, Gogo, Illumina, and Alibaba all rank as big-cap Internet stocks, but Kauffman says that smaller companies have been thriving as buyers and providers of data security and AI solutions.
This episode of Barron’s Daily is brought to you by Why Invest with David Faber.