This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Pfizer, Glaxo, J&J Grab ASCO Spotlight

Stocks in this article: PFE GSK JNJ MDVN RHHBY

BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- New drugs from Pfizer (PFE) and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) that precisely target genetic weaknesses in cancer were given spotlight treatment Wednesday night by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) in a preview of its upcoming and closely followed annual meeting.

ASCO officials also highlighted a mid-stage study of Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ) Zytiga in early-stage (pre-surgical) prostate cancer patients. Later during the ASCO meeting, which starts in two weeks, J&J will present new Zytiga results from a phase III study in more advanced prostate cancer patients.

In all, ASCO released more than 4,500 research abstracts, or clinical summaries, of new cancer drug data Wednesday night in advance of its annual meeting.

This year's ASCO meeting continues a trend toward exploiting new discoveries in the genetic makeup of cancer cells that allow drug makers to develop new therapies capable of directly targeting cancer at its weakest point.

One such drug is Pfizer's Xalkori, which targets abnormalities in the ALK gene that cause cancer cells to develop and grow out of control. Xalkori and a companion diagnostic test for the ALK gene received FDA approval in August 2011 for the 5% of non-small cell lung cancer patients who have mutated ALK genes.

Wednesday, researchers presented new data showing Xalkori stalls tumor growth, and in some cases, completely erases all signs of cancer, in children with select pediatric cancers.

The study enrolled 70 children with advanced neuroblastoma, anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) and inflammatory myofibroblastic tumors (IMT) that was no longer responding to current treatments. Patients were treated with one of six different doses of Xalkori, administered as a pill twice daily.

Eighty-eight percent (7/8) of patients with ALCL experienced a complete response, meaning they had no detectable disease. Responses have been durable, with patients remaining on Xalkori therapy with no return of their cancer for as long as 18 months. Abnormalities in the ALK gene are present in 80-95% of ALCL cases. Responses were also observed in patients with IMT and neuroblastoma.

"It's remarkable that this targeted oral medication provided such a substantial benefit in these children with highly aggressive cancers, most of whom had already undergone every available therapy," said Dr. Yael Mosse of Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • 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 Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,804.80 +26.65 0.15%
S&P 500 2,070.65 +9.42 0.46%
NASDAQ 4,765.38 +16.9840 0.36%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs