Some investors are starting to see Aspect Medical Systems (ASPM), tops in brain monitoring, in a new light. Its technology lets clinicians assess a patient's level of consciousness to judge the right amount of anesthesia to administer. Now, Aspect may be on to something more exciting: its technology's potential for treating Alzheimer's disease and depression. Mark Garfinkel of Trusco Capital Management, which owns shares, says Aspect is making headway in clinical trials, co-funded by Boston Scientific (BSX), that use its monitors in managing depression. Boston Scientific owns 28% of Aspect. Suraj Kalia of investment firm Rodman & Renshaw says these potential applications "could increase Aspect's attractiveness as a potential takeout candidate." Charles Olszlewski of Oppenheimer Funds (OPPEX) expects profits of 61 cents a share in 2006 and 65 cents in 2007, up from 35 cents in 2005. The stock, now at 28.50, is surely a "buy," he asserts.
Note: Unless otherwise noted, neither the sources cited in Inside Wall Street nor their firms hold positions in the stocks under discussion. Similarly, they have no investment banking or other financial relationships with them.
By Gene G. Marcial