Biotech Stock Mailbag: Poniard Predictions
Writes Leslie, " Adam, what's your prediction for results from Poniard's phase III study of picoplatin in small cell lung cancer?"
I have no edge on this one, so I don't have a prediction for you. Needless to say, this is a huge event for Poniard. A successful study lands the company a partnership and a nice bump in the stock price. I'll guess in the $12-plus range. A negative outcome get reported, and Poniard shares will plummet towards cash levels of around $1. The stock was trading Thursday at around $7.
Poniard has guided to data before the end of November.Picoplatin is a next-generation platinum chemotherapy drug designed to overcome resistance to prior platinum therapy. The drug may also cause less nerve-related toxicity. The phase III study, dubbed "SPEAR," compares treatment with picoplatin against best supportive care (BSC) in second-line small cell lung cancer (SCLC) patients. These are patients with advanced, progressive disease after treatment with a front-line platinum agent. The primary endpoint of the study is overall survival. The bull story: A published single-arm phase II study of picoplatin in SCLC patients demonstrated a median overall survival of 27 weeks. Best supportive care (BSC) in this patient population is believed to yield a median survival of around 14 weeks (again, from prior published studies.) Poniard designed the SPEAR study conservatively so that picoplatin patients need only reach a 19-week median survival for the study to be a success, based on the assumption of a 14-week median survival for patients treated with BSC. Patients in the BSC arm are also prohibited from being treated with other chemotherapies in the second line, which could, in theory, hurt picoplatin's chances of showing a significant survival benefit.
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