Healthcare Business

Exelixis Initiates Key Late-Stage Cancer Trial

Exelixis Inc. (NASDAQ: EXEL) shares dipped on Monday after the company announced that it has initiated a late-stage trial in patients with radioiodine-refractory differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC).

This Phase 3 trial (COSMIC-311) of single-agent cabozantinib is specifically designed for DTC patients who have progressed after up to two prior vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR)-targeted therapies.

So far, cabozantinib has demonstrated encouraging clinical activity in patients with radioiodine-refractory DTC in Phase 1 and 2 studies, suggesting it may be a promising treatment option for patients who have progressed after prior VEGFR-targeting therapy.

Management is looking forward to enrolling patients in this global trial to learn more about the potential of cabozantinib for this intractable form of thyroid cancer.

Marcia Brose, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Otorhinolaryngology: Head and Neck Surgery and Director of the Center for Rare Cancers and Personalized Therapy at the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania, and principal investigator of the trial, commented:

With the incidence of thyroid cancer increasing more rapidly than any other type of cancer in the U.S., and limited options available to patients whose disease has progressed following anti-VEGFR therapy, there is an urgent need for new treatments. Given the positive results from earlier stage trials, we are eager to learn more from this phase 3 study about cabozantinib’s potential benefit in this patient population.

Excluding Monday’s move, Exelixis shares have underperformed the broad markets, with the stock down 31.5% in the past 52 weeks. In just 2018 alone, the stock is down 42% year to date.

Shares of Exelixis were last seen down about 1% at $17.47, with a consensus analyst price target of $29.22 and a 52-week trading range of $15.81 to $32.50.