The share price of
) gained 11.6% after the company along with its partner
Merck & Co. Inc.
) published favorable data on vintafolide from a phase II study,
PRECEDENT, in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (JCO).
The results formed the basis of regulatory application of
vintafolide in the EU for treating folate-receptor positive
platinum-resistant ovarian cancer in combination with pegylated
liposomal doxorubicin (PLD).
The international, multi-center, randomized, phase II study
enrolled 149 women with platinum-resistant ovarian cancer. The
study evaluated vintafolide in combination with PLD versus PLD
alone. The study revealed a median progression-free survival
(PFS) of 5.0 months in the vintafolide plus PLD arm compared to
2.7 months for those treated with PLD alone. While PFS was the
primary endpoint of the study, response rate and overall survival
were the secondary endpoints.
Data also revealed that the combination of vintafolide and PLD
was well tolerated. As per information provided by Endocyte,
roughly 22,240 new cases of ovarian cancer in the U.S. and over
40,000 new cases in the EU are anticipated in 2013.
Vintafolide is currently being evaluated in a phase IIb TARGET
trial in non-small cell lung cancer patients and a phase III
PROCEED trial in women with platinum resistant ovarian cancer
along with diagnostic imaging agent, etarfolatide. Endocyte also
anticipates starting a randomized phase II study of vintafolide
soon, in folate receptor-positive triple negative breast
Endocyte and Merck entered into a partnership in Apr 2012
regarding vintafolide. Endocyte granted Merck an exclusive
license to develop, manufacture and commercialize vintafolide
outside the U.S. In the U.S. the two companies will co-promote
vintafolide following its approval.
Endocyte currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Currently,
Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
) look more attractive with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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