Monday, October 13, 2014

Hazmat Suit Maker Lakeland Soars On Dallas Ebola Fear

Lakeland Industries (NASDAQ:LAKE) shares soared Thursday after a Dallas County sheriff's deputy was put in isolation with possible Ebola symptoms, raising fears the deadly virus may be spreading in the U.S.
The company makes the ChemMax 1 hazmat suit, which provides protection against blood-born pathogens like Ebola. Lakeland's stock has tripled in the past month as concerns have mounted.

The deputy, who was admitted to the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital on Wednesday, issued a quarantine order to the family of Thomas Eric Duncan, 

the first patient to be diagnosed with the disease outside Africa.  
The deputy didn't have direct contact with Duncan, and the hospital said his symptoms aren't consistent with Ebola. But he will be kept under observation until test results come back later Thursday.
Lakeland shares jumped 62% on the stock market today.

Duncan, who contracted Ebola while in Liberia, died Wednesday despite receiving Chimerix's (NASDAQ:CMRX
experimental drug brincidofovir. Chimerix shares fell 3%.

The drug was approved for potential use in Ebola patients by the Food and Drug Administration on Monday. Other experimental drugs are being administered on a case-by-base basis.

Earlier, Rick Sacra, an American doctor who contacted the disease while working at an obstetrics clinic in Liberia, received Tekmira Pharmaceuticals' (NASDAQ:TKMR) TKM-Ebola drug and survived. Tekmira shares fell 4% Thursday.
Tekmira is developing the drug along with the Defense Department's Medical Countermeasure Systems BioDefense Therapeutics Joint Product Management Office. For years, DOD was concerned that the virus might be used in a bioterrorist attack.

ZMapp, made by San Diego's Mapp Biopharmaceutical, was given to two U.S. aid workers who survived, and the last remaining dose was sent to Norway on Wednesday to treat a women evacuated from Sierra Leone. But two Spanish nationals still died after being treated with the drug.

NewLink Genetics (NASDAQ:NLNK) and GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) also have experimental Ebola drugs, and Hemispherx Biopharma (AMEX:HEB) has expanded its Ebola research.

Ebola's global death toll is nearing 4,000, with the majority of the deaths in Sierra Leone and Liberia.

By: Gillian Rich