Ariad Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
) recently presented pre-clinical data on Iclusig (ponatinib) at
the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer
Research (AACR). The study revealed that Iclusig has the
potential to inhibit activated and mutated forms of KIT. We note
that KIT is an oncogenic driver present in approximately 80%
gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) patients.
Further, Iclusig showed potential against activated forms of
KIT and also against a range of secondary mutations resistant to
) Glivec (imatinib) and/or
) Sutent (sunitinib malate).
Ariad intends to initiate a phase II study of Iclusig in GIST
patients in the second quarter of 2013.
We remind investors that Ariad is also conducting additional
studies for Iclusig. Results from the phase III EPIC study
(Evaluation of Ponatinib versus Imatinib in Chronic Myeloid
Leukemia) are due in mid-2014.
Recently, Ariad presented pre-clinical data showing that
Iclusig has the potential to inhibit RET (oncogenic driver of
medullary thyroid cancer or MTC and non-small cell lung cancer or
NSCLC) and FGFR (commonly mutated in endometrial, lung and other
We note that Iclusig is already approved in the US for the
treatment of chronic, accelerated or blast phase chronic myeloid
leukemia (CML) or Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute
lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph+ ALL) in patients resistant or
intolerant to prior tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy.
Currently, Ariad carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Comparatively, other companies like
) look more attractive carrying a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
Meanwhile Novartis carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
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