SOURCE: The Bedford Report

The Bedford Report

March 24, 2011 07:35 ET

Which Small Cap Healthcare Stocks Are Potential Takeover Targets?

The Bedford Report Provides Analyst Research on Orexigen Therapeutics & AEterna Zentaris

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - March 24, 2011) - Merger and Acquisition activity in the healthcare sector has been on the upswing in recent quarters. Going forward larger healthcare firms are expected to continue searching for smaller, more speculative companies which are focusing on specific treatments and specialties in the medical sector. Recent reports suggest that not only is Big Pharma active in acquisitions, but also larger biotech firms are showing willingness to utilize their large resource pools to acquire smaller firms in a race to diversify and to build their reach. The Bedford Report examines the outlook for companies in the Healthcare Sector and provides research reports on Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: OREX) and AEterna Zentaris, Inc. (NASDAQ: AEZS). Access to the full company reports can be found at:

A recent report from Deal Search Online claims that while the healthcare sector saw a 40 percent drop in the number of M&A deals last year, the 115 deals in 2010 amounted to $57.5 billion, a 21 percent increase over 2009. The report suggests that the last decade saw an increase in the amount of deals, led in part by pharmaceutical companies seeking new blockbuster drugs and products to fill the void left by drugs coming off patent.

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A safe and effective obesity drug could have astronomical earnings potential in North America. Obesity drugs have, however, proven to be one of the most difficult to gain approval. The FDA has proven to be very hesitant to approve prospective obesity drugs due to both safety and efficiency concerns. Recently the FDA dealt Orexigen a blow when the FDA declined to approve its obesity drug, Contrave in the present form and issued a complete response letter (CRL). The FDA stated that it is concerned about the long-term cardiovascular safety profile of the obesity candidate and has asked Orexigen to conduct an additional study.

AEterna Zentaris is a late-stage drug development company specialized in oncology and endocrinology. The company also markets Cetrotide, a luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone antagonist treatment approved for in vitro fertilization.

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