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Nobel Biocare shares plummet as traders await report

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17:47 CET+01:00
Shares in Nobel Biocare dropped to the bottom of the Swiss Market Index in afternoon trade, after the Swedish Medical Products Agency (SMPA) said it will publish the findings of its investigation into the group's dental implant NobelDirect tomorrow, dealers said.

At 3.50 pm, Nobel Biocare traded 1.5 percent lower at 325 Swiss francs, while the Swiss Market Index was 2.67 points down at 8,476.72.

"Investors are fearing the impact of a negative verdict," a local trader said.

While NobelDirect only contributes 2 percent of NobelBiocare's profit, a negative ruling might severely impact the reputation of the company," he added.

The details of the verdict are seen as essential to the performance of the stock.

The investigation was prompted in May 2005, after two Swedish dentists alleged that the product is causing unexpected boneloss.

In November the SMPA expert panel published a preliminary finding, warning the product should be used with "great care" only, after it found that Nobel Biocare's own two-year study was not based on a representative sample.

"Should the report not only call into question NobelDirect's benefits, but conclude it does indeed cause severe levels of jaw bone losses, the group might also face compensation claims in the US driving the stock down even further," another analyst warned.

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