Healthcare Stocks Ending with Losses; Cleveland Labs Falls to Record Low After Partner Pulls Plug on Radiation Treatment

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Healthcare stocks are mostly lower in afternoon trade with the NYSE Healthcare Sector Index sliding about 0.7% and shares of healthcare companies in the S&P 500 down about 0.9% as a group.

In company news, Cleveland BioLabs ( CBLI ) shares slid to an all-time low of 63 cents apiece, recovering only slightly in later trade after saying the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority has ended talks over further development of its Entolimod drug candidate as a medical radiation countermeasure in cancer patients.

In prepared remarks, CBLI executives indicated the BARDA decision appears to be tied to funds availability. "We are moving forward with our plan to pursue pre-Emergency Use Authorization" for Entolimod, said CEO Yakov Kogan, adding the company also plans to continue work on other oncology drug candidates.

Shares were down nearly 34% shortly before the closing bell at 75 cents each. Volume also has been extremely heavy, with more than 4.75 million shares exchanged - or nearly 27 times its average daily volume over the past three months.

In other sector news,

(+) TXMD, (+2.3%) Receives U.S. Patent, "Natural Combination Hormone Replacement Formulations and Therapies," covering the company's platform technology and its drug candidate to treat menopausal symptoms by replacing 17 beta-estradiol and progesterone hormones.

(+) VAR, (+1.0%) Earns $0.91 per share in Q1, matching analyst expectations, on $712 mln in revenue - trailing the Capital IQ consensus by $6 mln. Forecasts FY14 EPS of $4.22 to $4.34, straddling estimates. Sees Q2 earnings of $1.00 to $1.04 per share, missing expectations by at least $0.06.



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Referenced Stocks: CBLI

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