Healthcare Stocks Slightly Higher; Agenus Adds 20% on Positive Test Results for Prospective Cancer Vaccine

By Staff,

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Top Healthcare Stocks

JNJ +0.03%

PFE +0.10%

ABT +0.34%

MRK -0.84%

AMGN +0.38%

Healthcare stocks are narrowly higher, with the NYSE Healthcare Sector Index climbing 0.3% while shares of healthcare companies in the S&P 500 are holding a 0.2% gain as a group.

In company news, Agenus Inc. ( AGEN ) shares are up more than 20% at $2.94 apiece, reaching some of their best levels since early September at $3.20 apiece after the biotech reported positive results from Phase II testing of its Prophage Series G-200 brain-cancer vaccine treatment.

According to the company, 90% of patients with surgically resectable recurrent high-grade glioblastoma multiform - the deadliest form of brain cancer - treated with Prophage were alive six months after receiving the drug, meeting the primary objective of the multi-center, single arm trial.

Approximately 30% of the trial patients were alive at twelve months, with a median overall survival of around eleven months.

In other sector news,

(+) CBST, (+7.2%) Its ceftolozane/tazobactam antibiotic candidate combined with metronidazole met primary endpoints of statistical non-inferiority compared to meropenem in Phase III testing in patients with complicated intra-abdominal infections.

(-) PIP, (-2.0%) FDA places a clinical hold on the company's SparVax rPA anthrax vaccine program. Phase II trials had been expected to begin before year's end; a letter explaining the agency's reasons are expected within 30 days.

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

Copyright (C) 2014 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing Commodities
Referenced Stocks: AGEN

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