Healthcare Stocks Declining; ArQule Jumps After Data Committee Signs Off On Continued Study of Cancer Medication

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Top Healthcare Stocks

JNJ +0.16%

PFE -0.39%

ABT -0.51%

MRK -1.24%

AMGN +0.10%

Healthcare stocks are mostly lower with the NYSE Healthcare Sector Index slipping about 0.4% and shares of healthcare companies in the S&P 500 declining about 0.2% as a group.

In company news, ArQule Inc. ( ARQL ) is up more than 10% at $2.60 a share shortly before the closing bell and the drug-maker saying the data monitoring committee overseeing Phase III testing of its tivantinib drug candidate recommending continuation of the trial using a loser dose of the drug in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma and non-small cell lung cancer.

ARQL said the decision followed the panel's analysis of data from patients receiving a smaller, 120-milligram tivantinib tablets twice daily, with that subgroup showing fewer signs of neutropenia, which causes abnormally low counts of white blood cells. Patients in the study have been subject to additional safety monitoring measures since September following reports of neutropenia in some patients.

In other sector news,

(+) RTRX, SAC Capital discloses 5.6% passive stake, with the investment fund managed by Steven Cohen now owning 1.29 million shares. Broadfin Capital also reports 6.93% stake with nearly 1.61 million shares, according to new 13G filings with regulators.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: ARQL

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