Skip to main content

Biotech stocks closed on a more neutral note after a Wednesday that included a licensing deal, clinical data and a few analyst adjustments.

Shares of



surged after the company announced a big

deal with Pfizer



(PFE) - Get Free Report

will pay Medivation $225 million up front for worldwide marketing rights to its late-stage Alzheimer's disease drug Dimebon. If the drug is approved, Medivation will bank another $500 million from Pfizer. Pfizer will assume 60% of development expenses and potential profits.

Shares of Medivation rose $3, or 11.5%, to $29.03, while Pfizer rose 3 cents to $19.20. Medivation is a component of the Nasdaq biotechnology index, which was up 7.22, or 0.8%, at 887.38.

In clinical news,

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals

(REGN) - Get Free Report

said Wednesday that a mid-stage study on its Arcalyst in gout patients was successful in meeting its primary and secondary endpoints. The drug produced a statistically significant reduction in the incidence of gout flares versus placebo. There were no serious drug-related adverse events reported. Based on the results, Regeneron plans to initiate late-stage development of Arcalyst in gout early next year. Regeneron shares were up by $1.22, or 5.9%, to $21.80.

Forest Laboratories


fell $5.19, or 14.3%, to $31.08 on Wednesday after the company announced results from two late-stage trials on its experimental drug for patients with moderate to severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD.

The company said the once-daily aclidinium bromide achieved its primary endpoint, showing a statistically significant difference versus placebo in a measure of lung function that is affected in patients with moderate to severe COPD. However, the drug missed certain secondary endpoints and underwhelmed some expectations.

Lazard Capital upgraded

Amylin Pharmaceuticals

( AMLN) to buy from hold. The stock gave up 40% in two weeks on a string of news related to pancreatitis and death in patients taking Byetta, a drug of Amylin and its partner

Eli Lilly

(LLY) - Get Free Report

. Shares of Amylin, which traded as high as $51 in the last year, rose 70 cents, or 3.3%, to $22.27 on Wednesday.

Stanford Research upped its price target for



to $72 from $60. In July, Bristol-Myers Squibb bid $60 a share for the cancer-drug company. ImClone was underwhelmed

with the advance from Bristol-Myers

, saying it

substantially undervalues

the company. The stock has continued to trade above the offer price. Shares were unchanged at $64.45.

ImClone said Wednesday that it had submitted an application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to broaden the use of its cancer drug Erbitux to include first-line treatment of patients with recurrent and/or metastatic squamous cell cancer of the head and neck.