Healthcare Business

Why This Successful Bladder Cancer Study May Not Be Enough

Immunomedics Inc. (NASDAQ: IMMU) shares dropped sharply on Monday after the firm presented interim data from its midstage bladder cancer study at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Annual Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

In this report, sacituzumab govitecan produced an overall response rate (ORR) of 29% in 35 patients with metastatic urothelial cancer (mUC) who had relapsed or were refractory to immune checkpoint inhibitors (CPI) and platinum-based chemotherapy.

The 29% ORR included two confirmed complete responses, six confirmed partial responses and two additional partial responses pending confirmation. At the time of data cutoff on August 5, 2019, eight of 10 responders had an ongoing response. Median time to onset of response was 1.5 months. For patients with liver metastases, ORR was 25%.

It’s worth pointing out that the 29% ORR was short of its rival at Seattle Genetics Inc. (NASDAQ: SGEN), which had a 44% response rate.

Dr. Behzad Aghazadeh, executive chair of Immunomedics, commented:

These interim results, in a larger number of CPI-experienced patients, are consistent with previously reported efficacy of sacituzumab govitecan in mUC, and also show encouraging benefits observed in patients relapsed on enfortumab vedotin. Based on these data, the company will be exploring registrational pathways with the FDA.

Additionally, Immunomedics announced two clinical collaborations that address continuing unmet needs in breast cancer. The collaboration with Roche will evaluate the safety and efficacy of the combination of atezolizumab (Tecentriq)

Shares of Immunomedics traded down about 11% at $12.69, in a 52-week range of $11.55 to $24.99. The consensus price target is $25.45.

Seattle Genetics was up 12% at $84.93 a share. The 52-week range is $50.71 to $88.19, and the consensus price target is $82.36.

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