So many blind spots right out in the open…

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So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by huntingonthebluffs » Mon Nov 18, 2019 7:16 pm

I haven’t had much to say over the last several months because progress is apparent to me and continues to be articulated well by those intellectuals and medically vested among us. I have a little time here so decided to needlessly ramble on regarding the naysayers propensity to continually slander the success of Imetelstat’s future Even while, JS/Geron continue to expand their footprint, presence and strategy with financing, leadership and staff, CTs, KOL involvement, regulator designations and an accelerated information loop, etc. So what is not understood or missing?

In little more than one year, the seeds have all been pretty much planted to grow Geron into a mean, lean pharma machine in parallel with the coming acceptance of the first in class Imetelstat science and drug. They have expanded beyond basic oversight leadership to boots on the ground to take Imetelstat through various CT’s, regulatory approvals, manufacturing, delivery and marketing and into the strategic arena of combinations. So what is not understood or missing?

The costs will continue to increase, probably on a timely and occasionally in a ‘just in time’ manner as infrastructure is grown to match potential and opportunity. Surprises will likely abound. JS is conservative and not prone to intentionally mislead, giving me the confidence to believe we are on a very successful track. While over time we might feel that JS has intentionally undersold to the investors, but for me it’s for reasons we should all understand and appreciate by now. However, at this juncture, I feel like we should also be able to fill in some of the blanks given what we know. And, like me, for an old guy, I don’t think one should underestimate the amount of JS’s testosterone or his willingness to take the calculated risk to seize the opportunity in front of him. Seems to me, he is doing quite well on that measure. And as we all know, there is a lot of information and “intelligence” being exchanged in the pharma business at large between KOLs, business leaders and BODs that we are not privy to until made public. Personally, I like it that way so we all don’t feel the need to boil it down all the time. So what is not understood here or missing?

I don’t think there is anything out in a CT phase that is competitive with Imetelstat, then again I am a novice, just haven’t heard of anything or didn’t understand something or its progress in the ‘pipeline’. What I have been hearing about though, is a number of companies buying or licensing other treatments in the hemo space that are usually, in my opinion, second rate and/or palliative in nature. Why might the BPs be doing that? It seems a little strange to me but might it just be they want to keep expanding their footprint in treating hemo diseases and one clear option is that they are preparing for Imetelstat’s approval and eventual array of combinations. Since Imetelstat is not currently for sale, potentially they are looking for a way to share/profit in the coming onslaught of combinations with Imetelstat. So what is still missing here?

The ATM sales might not make sense to me but are occurring for reasons which make sense to JS and company. So what are the reasons? One reality is JS is not going to be beholden to any entity to bring Imetelstat to market. Actually that is what he has indicated in so many words. But could there be more, maybe much more? I think the 1Q2020 meeting with the FDA re: MF and the aggressive setup of Imetelstat inventory and manufacturing capability point to something much more significant. I think the aggressive addition of senior leadership and staff point to something much more significant. Of course with that come more expenses and salaries to pay as the staff increases, but what the additional staff is up to is probably just as or more expensive and far more important. The FPD in MF received in September plays a role in this and is ‘another signal’ along with the MDS progression that JS/Geron are stepping up their game as does the preclinical using Jakafi. Yes I have some grasp of the regulatory environment and BOD’s fiduciary duties, so given our current state of activity and progress, do we still need to continually second guess why the ATM sales? Until commercialization and associated revenue and profits, the ATM appears to be the funding vehicle of choice and I think JS/COB believe they are choosing the most effective course of action and we have to live with that question or not if you think there is something missing or hidden.

Compared to the last twenty years or so, this story is coming like a freight train running on an exponential track uphill. Seems to me much is rapidly coming together for patients, investors and Geron. So what is not understood or missing? While much is still hidden as it should be, for those of us who have been at this for a while at least for me, the writing on the wall can help us figure this one out and I don’t expect I will be disappointed.

Well of course, we still have to put up with the noise for a while that we have an old tired CEO and COB who are robbing us all blind. I for one am not going anywhere and greatly appreciate the solid thinking that ImetelChat provides. Which provides timely and quality information and logic (positives and negatives) in this space that is unblemished by obvious bashing as in the other boards.

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Re: So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by bucbeard » Tue Nov 19, 2019 1:47 am

Here here, Hunting! I'm in complete agreement.

Thank you for your wisdom, calmness and reason.

Secret Third Arm
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Re: So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by Secret Third Arm » Tue Nov 19, 2019 1:21 pm

Very well said indeed. Here's an exercise that I find helpful. Imagine that right now the stock price was $7. Now factor in everything you said and you would have a very compelling investment thesis. Analysts would be piling on to talk about (and hype) what is about to happen at Geron and with Imetelstat.

The problem is that the share price is not $7 and that adds a certain amount of worry and concern to the thesis. Suddenly everything that is positive about Geron as an investment is thrown into question. Investors can't see the forest for the trees.

Scarlett and I spoke after the 2019 shareholder meeting and I asked him directly about his thoughts on the share price. He said in no uncertain terms that we are operating under the perceived cloud of the JNJ discontinuation. Try as we might that will be the strongest negative on the stock price and it will outweigh any other positive until some major event convinces the market otherwise.

For those of us lucky (irony intended) longs who are willing to accept that the JNJ decision was not because of a failure of the science, the balance shifts back and we see the tremendous potential here. Our reasons for this are numerous but in the words of Scarlett once again, 'look at all the amazing people who have come here to work on this drug' (paraphrased). For me, Dr. Rizo coming to Geron to be our Chief Medical Officer completely negates the failure of JNJ to continue the collaboration. If this were a mathematical equation then those two factors negating each other leaves us with only the positive investment thesis that was so eloquently laid out by Huntingonthebluffs.

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Re: So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by huntingonthebluffs » Sat Nov 30, 2019 5:36 pm

Thanks to Bucbeard and Secret Third Arm for chiming in here on this slant of thinking. I am traveling some and spending a lot of time in and around the bluffs (i.e. hunting) right now so apologize for the slow response. I should also point out that the reference to COB in my initial comments should have been BOD. I was not trying to speak so much from understanding of the current situation as being in amazement given where “we” stand, while knowing what “we” know. So to have your comments is much appreciated.

Secret Third Arm, all thoughtful and insightful comments as usual. Thank you for relating your first-hand knowledge of the remarks by JS on the impact of the negative CD to the share price. While we may have heard you comment on that before, it continues to resonate strongly. In hindsight, the JNJ / Janssen debacle appeared to have many handling issues and outright errors in judgment at “best” while at worst is anyone’s guess, especially in the few months prior as things “accidentally” lined up so nicely. Only one aspect of the 4 year effort was acted on by Wall Street and that in my mind was largely supported in how JNJ handled the announcement featuring several unknowns playing into what appeared to be a setup. So I certainly concur, that was a large part of the share price not being $7 today and as you noted, has a major impact on the “compelling” story Geron / Imetelstat is displaying in front of us all.

While I have moved past it, I personally lost any remaining confidence and faith in JNJ on their strategy to work fairly with small biotechs and how they run their business in general; while heavily weighted to JNJ, I do not excuse any omission or commission by JS / Geron. I think we all know none of what actually took place in the board rooms will likely find the light of day. While many things along the way pointed to lack of respect and fairness, following the negative CD it became perfectly clear to me how seriously bad JNJ’s karma was throughout the 4 years and I believe JNJ / Janssen would never have treated Geron, its investors or the patients in need, fairly. I personally am disappointed that I ever believed they might have done something worthwhile with Geron / Imetelstat or for that matter maybe with any small biotech given the way they threw Geron under the bus. I believe ethically much may be awry at JNJ but hopefully that will count and be used as lessons learned for all going forward.

Now and more importantly, I think the major events you refer to are stacking up and will likely begin their parade in the next year and ongoing from there as the bandwagon increases in size. Geron will continues to bolster its offense and defense, CT progress will likely accelerate, the results of treatments should continue to impress and move into the light of day, approval of Imetelstat should occur in expected steps and make its way into the oncology and hematology ‘tool boxes’. Geron will then have to be reckoned with by the pharma industry and of course, Wall Street. The array of factors and events, several we can’t possibly know yet, clearly seem to be working favorably and approaching, so while it’s not tomorrow or this year (as “pivotal” as it has been), much will play out in the coming months and year or two ahead that should finally bring clarity and success to this amazing story. A story that includes patients being given the option to move from a palliative to a disease modifying treatment!

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Re: So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by rccola335 » Sun Dec 01, 2019 1:04 am

selling shares at such a low price does not give me the warm and fuzzies but I put a lot of stock in the people who left secure jobs to place their bet on GERN options - I have also been encouraged by this podcast ... ent-of-mds
the CT order that was filed in early may tells me there is much more going on than we know - hopefully there are now surprises with phase III

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Re: So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by huntingonthebluffs » Mon Dec 02, 2019 12:56 am

rccola335, again, I am not an expert on any of this but I have listened to that podcast at least two or three times and I have always felt that the KOL’s speaking were holding back on their enthusiasm with Imetelstat partly maybe largely because of their (at least Dr Steensma) relationships with other pharmas, in this case associated with Luspatercept. I could be wrong certainly but palliative versus disease modifying, in my opinion, should should not receive a front line before a disease modifying treatment such as Imetelstat. And in this case neither drug has been approved by the FDA and there is still more to be determined regarding effectiveness where Luspatercept’s area of strength, I think, is fairly limited to RS, Imetelstat strength is at least 85% of the MDS population.

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Re: So many blind spots right out in the open…

Post by Gwikley » Tue Dec 03, 2019 1:35 am

Thanks for the great read, insights and educated "guessing".
I've held this stock for what seems like ages.
During all that time the company has never look so "on track" as it does now.
Couple more years..................!!


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