The good news, first: With a market value above $300 million, Ziopharm is outside the F-R Rule's "100% failure rate" zone for the palifosfamide clinical trial. Whew.
The not-so good news: Ziopharm, at a $350 million market cap, sits in the middle valuation bucket demonstrating a 17% clinical trial success rate, according to the data used to formulate the F-R Rule.
A 17% chance of success is better than 0% but it's a far cry from 80%.
If 17% makes you feel insecure about the looming outcome of the palifosfamide study, take heart in knowing that only 12 of the 59 clinical trials examined by Ratain and I were conducted by companies with market values between $300 million and $1 billion. That's a rather small sample size. The real success rate of cancer drug trials for companies of this size might be significantly higher, we just didn't have the retrospective data to show it.
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