American Society of Clinical Oncology
(ASCO) annual meeting doesn't kick off for another two and half months, but it's not too early for investors and traders to start compiling a target list of cancer-focused drug stocks.
If it hasn't started already, the momentum in cancer drug stocks will emerge in the days and weeks leading up to May 18. That's the date this year when ASCO will post research abstracts to its annual meeting on the group's web site. The actual ASCO annual meeting doesn't begin until June 3, but if you're looking to trade cancer-focused drug stocks, waiting for June usually means being very late to the party.
For ASCO 2011 buzz, I'd look to prostate cancer stocks. Investors are kicking the tires on
MDV-3100, especially since the company is dropping strong hints about a phase III interim analysis towards the end of the year. Investors are also focused on
for cabozantinib both in prostate cancer and more immediately for upcoming results from a phase III study in medullary thyroid cancer.
This year's ASCO meeting will be the second go-around for
with an approved Provenge under its wing. With Provenge manufacturing capacity expanding, are oncologists, particularly those at academic medical centers, becoming more enthusiastic prescribers of Dendreon's groundbreaking cancer immunotherapy?
Skin cancer is likely to be a hot topic once again, led by
Yervoy, which faces a key FDA approval decision at the end of the week. Bristol will use this year's ASCO meeting to both launch Yervoy but also to present new and
also figures to play heavily in the ASCO skin cancer discussion at with two drugs, PLX4032 and vismodegib (the latter partnered with
will discuss negative results from a phase III study of iniparib in metastatic triple-negative breast cancer, looking for a silver lining in a disappointing clinical setback.
ASCO is a meeting in which drug research on solid tumors (breast, lung, colon, prostate) dominates, but blood-related cancer drugs also share the stage. The controversy over secondary malignancies tied (or not tied) to long-term use of
multiple myeloma drug Revlimid is sure to be a story line at this year's meeting.
is likely to provide an update on a mid-stage study of ponatinib in chronic myeloid leukemia. Ariad and partner
will also present detailed data from a positive phase III study of ridaforolimus in sarcoma.
will be presenting data from two previously announced (and positive) phase III studies of ruxolitinib in myelofibrosis.
is also targeting myelofibrosis with its drug CYT387 with updated mid-stage data expected at ASCO.
Clinical studies pitting one targeted cancer drug against another are a rarity, but this year's ASCO meeting might be the forum for two such head-to-head trials.
are running separate phase III studies that compare their experimental kidney cancer drugs (axitinib and tivozanib, respectively) directly against
Other potential ASCO 2011 stocks:
with Xegeva for the prevention of prostate cancer bone metastases;
melanoma drug allovectin-7;
and its Stimuvax lung cancer vaccine;
and the newly licensed leukemia drug tosedostat; and
Am I missing any potential ASCO 2011 drug stocks? Please let me know in the comments section below.
--Written by Adam Feuerstein in Boston.
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