Updated from 6:25 p.m. EDT

Genentech

(DNA)

, the South San Francisco, Calif., biotech giant whose clinical brilliance has made the stock one of the

NYSE's

best performers for three years, kept the winning streak alive Monday.

Genentech's second-quarter profit jumped 73% from a year ago to $296.2 million, or 27 cents a share, while earnings before special items came in at $328.6 million, or 30 cents a share. Analysts were looking for 26 cents a share on the latter basis.

Investors cheered the report after hours; shares moved up 1.7% to $84.89 on Instinet.

Overall revenue was $1.53 billion, up from $1.13 billion a year ago and about $40 million above the Wall Street consensus. The upside looked attributable to better-than-expected sales of colon cancer drug Avastin, breast-cancer treatment Herceptin and a strong contribution from the lung cancer drug Tarceva.

By product, second-quarter Avastin sales were $245.7 million, about $10 million ahead of analysts' estimates. Sales of Herceptin were $152.4 million, about $10 million better than expected. Sales of lymphoma drug Rituxan were $450.3 million, about $20 million below estimates. And sales of Tarceva were $70.2 million, about $15 million better than expected.

"We have demonstrated continued strong growth this past quarter, achieving significant increases in product sales, revenues and earnings per share," Arthur D. Levinson, Genentech's chairman and chief executive, said in a press release. "Moving forward, we remain focused on strong execution that will allow us to pursue breakthrough therapies and the achievement of our Horizon 2010 goals."

The company forecast full-year EPS growth of more than 35% over 2004's 83 cents a share. That implies 2005 earnings of $1.13 a share, matching the Wall Street consensus estimate. Genentech has traditionally been conservative in its profit guidance.

"We are actively working with the

Food and Drug Administration to prioritize the nine potential filings relating to our significant Phase III trial results, while we continue to develop more than 30 projects in the pipeline primarily in our oncology and immunology focus areas," Susan D. Hellmann, president of Genentech's product development, said in a statement.

"We currently anticipate filing Herceptin for adjuvant breast cancer in the first quarter of 2006 and expect to provide updates on filing timelines for Avastin data upon the completion of preliminary discussions with the FDA," she continued.

Genentech is preparing for potential FDA filings for Avastin for second-line metastatic colorectal cancer, for first-line nonsquamous nonsmall cell lung cancer and for metastatic breast cancer. Additional filings are also in the works for Rituxan, as well as for Lucentis, a product for wet age-related macular degeneration.

In a conference call Monday, the company did admit concerns of supply risks from manufacturing at 100% capacity and warned of possible higher costs from hiring and maintaining employees.

However, Genentech said it will focus on maintaining its corporate culture during the company's rapid growth. It plans to keep its broad-based stock option plan similar to other same-sized companies, saying the resulting costs are outweighed by the benefits.