Asensio & Company, Inc. has issued a ten page institutional research report and Strong Sell recommendation on Hemispherx Biopharma, Inc. (AMEX symbols: HEB and HEBWS) (Price: $8.00). The document begins with Asensio & Company’s summary and recommendation. The report includes a comprehensive description of the troubled background of this thirty-two year old company and its financial and operational history, including a Stratton Oakmont, Inc. (“Stratton”) led 1995 public offering and a long and convincing record of failure and charges of scientific fraud.
The report addresses three key Hemispherx representations that have been widely disseminated and are material to the stock’s current market value. The report presents factual evidence that shows that each of these representations are false and untrue:
1. Hemispherx has overestimated the probable size of the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (“CFS”) treatment market.
2. Hemispherx has misrepresented Ampligen’s Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) filing status.
3. Hemispherx has misrepresented the results of its Phase II clinical trials and the efficacy of Ampligen as a drug for the treatment of CFS.
In addition, some of the background highlights include three controversial issues: (1) the failed E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. (NYSE Symbol: DD) clinical trials and subsequent scientific fraud charges, (2) Hemispherx’s CEO, Dr. William A. Carter’s alleged violations of federal securities laws and extortion of $1 million from an HIV sufferer and (3) Hemispherx’s pre-IPO transactions with Stratton, who were selected by Hemispherx to manage its initial public offering with full knowledge of Stratton’s fraudulent sales practices and numerous other violations of securities laws.
The report discusses CFS and the potential market for an effective CFS treatment. The condition is difficult to diagnose and therefore makes creating a random and representative survey of the population extremely complex. Three clinical trials of Ampligen have been run. The report analyzes each of these tests, which were all conducted before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) established its 1994 CFS definition, and discloses their fundamental flaws. The report also details Ampligen’s safety profile, which includes numerous, serious, adverse side effects that are of a concern to the FDA.
The report concludes that Hemispherx’s Ampligen is medically useless and an obsolete drug. The report supports Asensio & Company’s opinion that Hemispherx is promoting futile projects simply in order to enable insiders to sell their otherwise worthless stock to the public. Asensio & Company, Inc. sees no legitimate business purpose for Hemispherx’s operations and believes its shares will soon trade well below $1 per share.
Short selling involves a risk not associated with the purchase of stock including, but not only limited to, unlimited loss and stock borrowing risks. Additional information is available upon request.