ImClone Soars on Erbitux Study Results
Updated from 7:34 a.m. EDT
The cancer drug Erbitux has prolonged the survival of lung-cancer patients, according to results of a large phase III study announced today by German drug maker Merck KGaA, which sells the drug in Europe.
Erbitux is used primarily to treat colon cancer and head-and-neck cancer. Until today, the large and lucrative lung cancer treatment market has been out of the drug's reach. If Erbitux becomes a player in the lung cancer market, it could pinch sales of Genentech's (DNA) Avastin, which is currently the go-to targeted cancer drug for first-line lung cancer treatment.ImClone shares recently were up $8.27, or 22%, to $46.20. Genentech shares were off $1.40, or 1.8%, at $77.75. German Merck's so-called "Flex" study of Erbitux plus chemotherapy increased overall survival vs. chemotherapy alone in patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer. These patients had not previously received any chemotherapy treatment. No more details from the study were provided. These positive results are somewhat surprising because a similar Erbitux first-line lung cancer study run by Bristol-Myers Squibb came up negative in July. That study, known as BMS CA225, combined Erbitux with a different chemotherapy regimen than the one used in this Flex study.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV