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The Promise Of Longevity Science: 3 Small-Cap Companies With Anti-Aging Products

The Promise Of Longevity Science: 3 Small-Cap Companies With Anti-Aging Products

The challenge in securing a longer and healthier life was the focus of “Investing in Longevity Science: The New Drugs & Therapies Designed to Prolong Your Lifespan,” a panel discussion held Thursday during Benzinga’s Global Small Cap Conference that offered insight into three pharmaceutical endeavors designed to mitigate the difficulties of the aging process.

Growing Older In Better Shape: Robert Fried, CEO of ChromaDex (NASDAQ: CDXC), detailed his company’s focus on reversing the aging-induced declines in nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), a coenzyme involved in crucial metabolic cellular processes including energy metabolism and cell repair.

ChromaDex research into NAD+ concentrates on nicotinamide riboside, which the company has commercialized as the flagship ingredient in Tru Niagen that sells as a dietary supplement in the U.K., Hong Kong and Singapore, and will be introduced in 3,800 Walmart (NYSE: WMT) stores across the U.S. next month.

Fried said 60% of the company’s revenues are e-commerce based, and acknowledged Tru Niagen retail price is high — it is on Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) at $47.30 for a 30-capsule bottle. The price tag reflects the complexities of the production process, he said.

“Making it stable and making it safe, and doing it the proper way, is an expensive process,” he said. “We don't see it as a luxury brand, but we see it as a very, very high-quality brand because the product that we're offering is uniquely effective. Unlike the vast majority of dietary supplements, this is going to have an immediate physiological impact on your body, and we have numerous clinical studies to prove it.”

Fried state his company did approximately $66 million in revenue in 2020 and had approximately $45 million in cash as of the end of the first quarter, which he defined as “sufficient cash for us to be cashflow break-even.”

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More Peaceful Sleep: The therapeutic value of a good night’s sleep is impacted when sleep apnea disrupts the slumber process. Kirk Huntsman, CEO of Vivos Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: VVOS), discussed the technologies offered by his company that are designed to address this issue, which has an extensive target market.

“There's a billion people here on Planet Earth that are estimated to have obstructive sleep apnea,” he said. “And out of those billion people, the vast majority — as much as 80% or 90% — don't even know they have it, and thus they remain undiagnosed and untreated.”

Vivos’ solutions include consultations with a physician and dentist to determine the patient’s unique airwave rhythm algorithm, which enables the creation of an oral device to wear during sleep.

“Our oral appliances do things to open up the airway in about 12 to 24 months for most patients,” Huntsman said. “They look better, they feel better, they have more energy and all the downstream issues associated with obstructive sleep apnea tend to dissipate.”

Huntsman stated his company had a $120 million market cap and approximately $38 million on its balance sheet in cash.

Mitigating The Aging Process: Geoff Green, CEO of Longeveron (NASDAQ: LGVN), described his company’s mission as treating aging-related conditions including the advancement of physical frailty and Alzheimer's disease.

“The overarching goal here is to use the body's endogenous repair mechanism, the very specialized cells that exists in all of our bodies,” he said.

“They are called additional signaling cells and we seek to harness those properties to stimulate the repair and regeneration of damaged tissues and organs as we age. So, really, we're improving how we're preserving independence, and we're improving the quality of life of patients.”

The company’s lead investigational product Lomecel-B is derived from culture-expanded medicinal signaling cells that are sourced from bone marrow of young healthy adult donors.

Now in a Phase 2 clinical test with Lomecel-B, Longeveron plans to initiate three new clinical trials in the U.S. and Japan, which Green defined as having “two of the largest aging demographics in the world.”

Green said that because of Longeveron’s “very recent IPO in NASDAQ, we have $24.5 million on the balance sheet at the end of the first quarter, which gives us enough cash to last well into the fourth quarter of 2022, which would enable us to hit a number of internal catalysts related to our clinical development pipeline.”

(Photo by Michal Jarmoluk/Pixabay.)


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Posted-In: Benzinga Global Small Cap ConferenceNews Health Care Small Cap Events Top Stories General Best of Benzinga

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