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Small cap movers: Faron Pharma rockets as its rakes in more funds to bankroll new cancer drug

A look back at some of the more interesting stories from the junior market this past week...

Faron Pharmaceuticals Ltd - Small cap movers: Faron Pharma rockets as its rakes in more funds to bankroll new cancer drug
Faron's Clevegen treatment is designed to recognise cancer and break the cell’s protective shell

Cancer drug developer Faron Pharmaceuticals Oy (LON:FARN) has been on a tear, with the share price up 350% in the year to date.

The momentum continued this week as the stock rose 60% to 240p on news of a £7.5 million cash injection that will help the group finance a clinical trial of its new drug Clevegen.

Clevegen has been designed to recognise cancer and break the cell’s protective shell. Ultimately, if it is successful, this new breed of treatment could be used in combination with PD-1 inhibitors, another treatment method, to tackle the killer disease.

Faron’s boss, CEO Markku Jalkanen, said the trial will allow the firm to “clarify [the] full potential” of Clevegen, with a view of sharing that data with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which approves drugs for the American market.

The AIM All-Share was up 0.4% at 894 in the week, while the FTSE 100 rose 1.1% to 7,380.

Turning to the mining sector, Amur Minerals Corporation (LON:AMC) received a welcome boost in the form of new funding this week after a £1.2 million investment from an unnamed asset manager sent the shares up 62% to 3p.

Investors also took a shine to KEFI Minerals PLC (LON:KEFI), which surged 52% higher to 1.2p after it resolved several administrative roadblocks with the Ethiopian government regarding its Tulu Kapi gold project.

State administrative arrangements had held up the closing of project financing past the originally set date of 31 October, but the gold explorer and developer said the project can now proceed.

Video game group Frontier Developments PLC (LON:FDEV) levelled up as the launch of its highly anticipated new game, Planet Zoo, sent the shares 13% higher to 1,234p.

Planet Zoo’s launch, which saw it hit the number-one bestseller spot on gaming platform Steam, coincided with an announcement that Frontier’s new publishing arm, which has already signed two partnerships with third-party development partners to work on new games, is discussing more deals.

Aukett Swanke Group PLC (LON:AUK) found itself on the rise too, leaping 52% to 2.3p, as the architecture firm said it expected to make a profit for its current year.

The announcement represents somewhat of a turnaround for the group, which saw its share price dive back in January when it posted a loss of £2.54mln for the year to 30 September.

AFC Energy PLC (LON:AFC) ascended 29% to 6.3p as it unveiled four new brands as its inaugural product line of hydrogen power technologies.

The new products include HydroX-Cell(L) and HydroX-Cell(S), zero-emission fuel cells that use hydrogen to generate power.

Gambling software firm GAN PLC (LON:GAN) also saw its numbers come up as it forecast that revenues for 2019 will more than double year-on-year. The news sent the shares spinning 32% higher to 162p.

Among the fallers, news of the UK government’s ban on fracking last weekend sent shares in IGas Energy Plc (LON:IGAS) down 15% to 31p.

The company is an investor in the Gainsborough Trough, a fracking project in the East Midlands whose future is now in doubt following the government’s decision.

Another investor in Gainsborough, Egdon Resources Plc (LON:EDR) was also on the slide, plunging 37% to 2.8p in the wake of the ban.

Kitchen cleaning services firm Filta Group Holdings PLC (LON:FLTA) was tarnished after a cut to its earnings forecasts for the full year sent the stock down 21% to 150p over the week.

LightwaveRF PLC (LON:LWRF) saw its share price dim considerably, falling 32% to 4.2p after it warned that its fourth-quarter revenues will be significantly below market expectations while losses were predicted to be higher than forecast.

Investors in cybersecurity firm Defenx PLC (LON:DFX) were also sent scrambling for the exit as the software group unveiled its plans to delist from AIM, causing the share price to crash 80% to 0.6p.

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