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Cathie Wood says this emerging investing trend is the ‘most misunderstood and underappreciated’

Ark Invest’s Cathie Wood believes innovators in DNA development are the most undervalued corner of the market. “I believe that today the genomic revolution is most misunderstood and underappreciated,” Wood said at Morgan Stanley’s AlphaCurrents Conference last week, according to a transcript provided by the bank. “The stocks in the last year, this growth stock bear market, has ravaged the genomic space. And so we think they’re ripe for the plucking,” Wood said. “There are some amazing ideas out there.” The innovation investor said advanced technology has brought down the costs of personalized medicine to a great extent. In the early 2000s, it cost $2.7 billion and took 13 years of computing power to figure out one person’s genome, six billion bits of code in our bodies. Today it costs $500 and the price continues to fall, she said. “Why do we want to know that? Mutations are the earliest manifestation of disease,” Wood said. “Prevent cancer, or at least discover it in stage one, very early stage one. We’re going to see real science, scientific knowledge applied to health care.” Ark Invest has a specific exchange-traded fund dedicated to this space: ARK Genomic Revolution ETF (ARKG) . Its top holdings include telemedicine firm Teladoc Health and CRISPR Therapeutics , the Basel, Switzerland-based biotech maker of gene-based medicines. Some of the companies in the fund also were involved in treatments for coronavirus, including Arcturus Therapeutics. However, the fund has wiped out half of its value this year as rising rates hit growth stocks particularly hard. ARKG skyrocketed 178% in 2020 as the pandemic boosted demand for biotech products. -CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed to this story.

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