Cocrystal Pharma Inc (OTCBB:COCP) declined more than 5% to close at $0.690 in last trading session. However, it is trading near its 52-week high of 0.79. The company has become a star stock of investors after Dr. Philip Frost resigned from his position of Chairman with Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (ADR)(NYSE:TEVA). He wants to focus on Opko Health Inc.(NYSE:OPK) and Cocrystal. Frost is both CEO and Chairman of Opko.
The strong movement
The decline in Cocrystal’s share price on Thursday is seen as a minor pullback after their impressive run of over 50% in just five trading sessions. Frost owns 22% stake in Cocrystal out of which 14.3% stake is held by Frost Investments while 7.8% is owned by Opko. Frost is a director and also a part of Insiders team who hold almost 72% of shares outstanding.
Cocrystal main project at this time is development of Hepatitis C antivirals. The project team is headed by Raymond F Schinazi, the founder of Pharmasset, a company that was acquired by Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:GILD) for $11 billion. It is one of the reasons behind the surge in Cocrystal’s share prices. Schinazi was part of a team that developed Emtriva, one of the HIV blockbusters.
Experience and expertise
Schinazi brings years of experience and expertise with him as he joins Cocrystal to assist in development of Hepatitis C antivirals. Over the years, he has helped biotech companies in their research process. He was the man behind the success of Triangle Pharmaceuticals that was sold to Gilead in 2003 for $464 million. He was one of the founders of Idenix Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:IDIX), a company which is now considered as one of the big takeover target in field of Hepatitis C. It is evident Schinazi guidance worked for these companies, and market expects same trend continues with Cocrystal.