Inhibitex Shares Soared: What You Need to Know

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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Inhibitex (NAS: INHX) , which doubled on Friday, continued their climb Monday, after the company reported strong clinical data for its in-development hepatitis C treatment. The stock popped 24% in early trading before closing up around 14%.

So what: As my Foolish colleague David Williamson points out, Inhibitex's oral drug -- code-named INX-189 -- could threaten to displace more complex treatments from Vertex Pharmaceuticals (NAS: VRTX) and Merck (NYS: MRK) . Vertex, in particular, closed off 9%.

Now what: Action in Inhibtex peer Pharmasset (NAS: VRUS) , which closed up more than 4%, could help explain the Vertex sell-off. At the very least, it suggests that investors believe oral treatments are the future for hepatitis C sufferers. Do you agree? Would you buy shares of Inhibitex at current prices? Please weigh in using the comments box below.

Interested in more information about Inhibitex? Add it to yourwatchlist.

At the time this article was published Fool contributorTim Beyersis a member of theMotley Fool Rule Breakersstock-picking team. He didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Check out Tim'sportfolio holdingsandFoolish writings, or connect with him onGoogle+or Twitter, where he goes by@milehighfool. You can also get his insightsdelivered directly to your RSS reader.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.

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