The Index underperformed the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the Nasdaq, and the Nasdaq Biotechnology Index, which gained nearly 2 percent, less than 1 percent, and 1 percent, respectively. Stock performances in the December GenomeWeb Index were largely negative as 21 of the 26 stocks saw losses and only 5 saw gains.
Foundation Medicine was the month's biggest gainer, with a 28 percent increase in share price. The company announced early in December that the US Food and Drug Administration had approved its NGS-based genomic profiling test, FoundationOne CDx (F1CDx), and that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has concurrently issued a preliminary national coverage determination for the test under the Parallel Review Program. F1CDx is the second IVD to be approved and covered as part of that program, which is voluntary and aims to reduce the time between FDA approval of a device and its coverage by Medicare.
In a conference call following the decision, Foundation CEO Troy Cox noted that coverage by CMS should also make it easier for Foundation Medicine to obtain reimbursement from private payors going forward.
This is Foundation's third month in a row in the top three — the company's stock gained 12 percent in October and 18 percent in November.
Quidel took second place among the gainers with a 14 percent increase in share price in December. The firm noted in mid-December that its acquisition of the Alere Triage and BNP businesses from Abbott was proceeding as planned, and that the anticipated strong flu season was likely to be have a positive impact on its diagnostics business.
Quidel also received clearance from the FDA on Dec. 22 for an assay to detect Group B Strep using its Solana molecular system, and an assay to detect Group A Strep on its Sofia 2 fluorescent immunoassay analyzer.
Genomic Health rounded out the top three in December with a 13 percent gain in share price, despite a downgrade to Underweight from Neutral by JP Morgan. The firm announced in early December that it had signed a multi-year research collaboration agreement with Janssen Pharmaceuticals in which the companies planned to evaluate Genomic Health's Oncotype DX Genomic Prostate Score as a predictor of response to prostate cancer drugs in Janssen's pipeline.
Pacific Biosciences took the top spot for the decliners, losing 17 percent in December. There was no specific reason for the decline, but it continued from a 25 percent drop the company suffered in November following a 6 percent drop in Q3 revenues, lower-than-expected sales of its Sequel instrument, and customer reports of reduced instrument performance because of a part that had degraded faster than anticipated.
Enzo Biochem and Bio-Rad filled out the list of top three decliners with losses of nearly 17 percent and 12 percent, respectively.