Healthcare Business

Thursday's Top 4 ASCO Movers

The 55th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is scheduled for May 31 to June 4 in Chicago. This meeting always brings big swings in the health care sector, both positive and negative. As we have said before, the results presented at this meeting have the potential to make or break these companies.

This is known as the world’s largest clinical cancer conference, and it always delivers new results on clinical trials and updated treatments in the field.

The theme for this year’s conference is “Caring for Every Patient, Learning From Every Patient,” which focuses on making precision medicine a reality by driving progress and expanding its reach so that every patient can have the opportunity to benefit.

The majority of abstracts were released on May 15, and we are now seeing the results of some studies ahead of the conference. These abstracts are also producing some big movers ahead of the conference. 24/7 Wall St. has taken a look at a few of these movers.

Iovance Biotherapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: IOVA) is one of the early big winners from ASCO. The firm announced updates from ongoing clinical trials including new interim data from studies of tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) therapy LN-145 in patients with advanced cervical cancer and with TIL therapy lifileucel in advanced melanoma.

Data from the innovaTIL-04 study in patients with recurrent, metastatic or persistent cervical cancer showed an objective response rate of 44% (one complete response, nine partial responses and two unconfirmed partial responses) and a disease control rate of 89%. As a reference, the overall response rate for Keytruda used in second line cervical cancer patients is 14%.

Shares of Iovance Bio closed Thursday up 36% at $15.28, with a 52-week range of $7.26 to $18.25. The stock has a consensus analyst price target of $24.50.

MacroGenics Inc. (NASDAQ: MGNX) announced additional details of the results from the Phase 3 Sophia study of margetuximab in patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer who have previously been treated with anti-HER2-targeted therapies. Margetuximab is an investigational, immune-enhancing monoclonal antibody derived from the company’s proprietary Fc Optimization technology platform.

The study met its first sequential primary endpoint of progression-free survival (PFS). The median PFS of patients treated with margetuximab and chemotherapy was 5.8 months, compared to 4.9 months in patients treated with trastuzumab and chemotherapy. The objective response rate, a secondary outcome measure in the Sophia study, was 22% in the margetuximab arm, compared to 16% in the trastuzumab arm.

Shares of MacroGenics closed up over 10% at $18.00, with a 52-week range of $9.87 to $32.32. The stock has a consensus analyst price target of $34.36.

Mirati Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: MRTX) shares moved higher in the session after it was announced that Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN) had promising news ahead of ASCO for its KRAS G12C inhibitor. It’s worth pointing out that Mirati is also developing a KRAS G12C inhibitor, MRTX849, that is in studies for an investigational new drug application. It’s possible that Mirati will experience even more volatility related to Amgen’s study.

Shares of Mirati closed up 11% at $70.49, with a 52-week range of $28.50 to $80.00. The stock has a consensus analyst price target of $81.46.

Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AGIO) released a few abstracts that were accepted by ASCO ahead of the conference. The firm announced that data from its isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) programs. One of the abstracts is in regards to Agios’ Phase 1 study of AG-120 and AG-881 in recurrent IDH1 mutant, low-grade glioma. Separately, the firm has two abstracts in regards to acute myeloid leukemia.

Shares of Agios closed up 5% at $49.74, with a 52-week range of $41.63 to $99.82. The stock has a consensus analyst price target of $84.13.