Shares of Eli Lilly (LLY) are up almost 18% so far in 2015 and optimism remains high after a recent study revealed the pharma giant’s diabetes drug cut the risk of heart related deaths. John Fraunces, portfolio manager for the Turner Medical Sciences Long/Short Fund (TMSCX), said the company has merited the praise it has been receiving from Wall Street. 'This is a stock that is growing a lot faster than its pharmaceutical peer group,' said Fraunces. 'They have made some great strides in their oncology portfolio.' The Turner Medical Sciences Long/Short Fund has risen 18% so far this year, according to fund-tracker Morningstar. The fund has outperformed 99% of its peers in Morningstar’s Long/Short Equity Category. Fraunces is also bullish on Prothena (PRTA), which has seen its shares surge almost 225% year-to-date. Prothena is a late-stage biotechnology company, focusing on protein immunotherapy. The company sports a market cap of $2 billion, despite only having $3.3 million in sales in the past 12 months. The sky-high valuation is not deterring Fraunces, however. 'We are going to see data coming out over the next two to three quarters that will bear themselves out as positive signals,' said Fraunces. 'We already saw that back in March and that’s what got driving was showing proof of concept in the Parkinson’s disease patients.'
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