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Nobel Prize for Cancer Immunotherapy & Biotech ETFs to Buy

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  • (1:00) - What Is Immunotherapy?
  • (3:45) - The Different Kinds of Immunotherapy 
  • (8:00) - What To Watch For In Immunotherapy Industry 
  • (15:20) - The Developing Biotech Industry: Is It More Risky?
  • (19:45) - Loncar China BioPharma ETF Overview: CHNA
  • (25:00) - Big Takeaways on Immunotherapy: Podcast@Zacks.com

In this episode of ETF Spotlight, I talked with Brad Loncar, CEO of Loncar Investments. Brad created the Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy index and the China BioPharma index.

The 2018 Nobel Prize in medicine has been awarded to Dr. James P. Allison and Dr. Tasuku Honjo for their work on immunotherapy. In simple words, immunotherapy uses the body’s immune system to fight cancer.

There’s a lot of innovation going on in this space. We discussed the basics of immunotherapy, and why this therapy is called a gamechanger for cancer treatment.

Further, immunotherapy is not just one thing. There are many different types of immunotherapy like checkpoint inhibitors, vaccines and cell therapy. This excellent infographic from NYT shows how doctors are using immunotherapy to help the cells of the immune system recognize and attack cancer cells:

The Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy ETF (CNCR - Free Report) invests in companies at the forefront of immunotherapy research.  It has 30 holdings, which are equally weighted. The expense ratio is 79 basis points.

Loncar Investments has also partnered with the Cancer Research Institute (CRI) and donates regular contributions to CRI.

We had talked about CNCR earlier this year. It was one of the top-performing ETFs then but has lost momentum in the past few months.

Looking at some of its holdings, we notice significant divergence in performance. Fate Therapeutics (FATE - Free Report) and Mirati Therapeutics (MRTX - Free Report) are up more than 130% this year. On the other hand, Five Prime Therapeutics (FPRX - Free Report) has plunged more than 40% and bluebird bio (BLUE - Free Report) is down more than 20%, year-to-date.

What do investors need to know about developments in this evolving space? Which companies are on Brad’s watchlist now? Find out on the podcast.

Healthcare was the top-performing sector in the third quarter but investors focused mainly on health insurers, pharmaceutical companies and medical device makers, and avoided riskier biotech stocks.  Earlier this year, we saw a surge of M&A activity in the space, which has settled down of late.  Can biotech stocks regain investor favor?

The Loncar China BioPharma ETF (CHNA - Free Report) , which made its debut in August, focuses on the booming biopharma industry in China. Brad explained why investors need to look at this promising space.

To learn more about these ETFs, please visit loncarfunds.com.

Please also visit the Cancer Research Institute to learn about this cancer treatment and clinical trials.

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