Markets

Health Care Sector Update for 01/22/2015: EGLT,NERV,ASPX

Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ +1.66%

PZE +0.31%

MRK +0.87%

ABT +0.48%

AMGN +1.12%

Health care stocks were narrowly higher with the NYSE Health Care Sector Index edging 0.7% higher and shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 climbing 1.1% as a group.

In company news, Egalet ( EGLT ) jumped more than 20% today after announcing positive top-line results from recent testing of a new abuse-deterrent pain medication, saying its Egalet-001 drug candidate appears much more difficult to alter than other medications now on the market while also proving to be an effective pain-killer.

The trial followed 38 patients with pain severe enough to require daily opioid treatment, comparing Egalet-001 with MSContin, a widely prescribed morphine-based pain medication. According to the company, Egalet-001 met its primary endpoint of lower "likability" by patients altering the pills to circumvent their extended-release protections.

EGLT shares were up more than 32% in late trade at $6.52 each, just a penny under its session high. The stock has traded within a 52-week range of $3.81 to $19.85 a share, sliding almost 59% over the past year prior to today's gain.

In other sector news,

(+) NERV, MIN-202 drug candidate significantly improves sleep during Phase I testing in patients with comorbid insomnia related to major depressive disorder.

(-) ASPX, Announces plans to sell 4.0 mln shares of its common stock in an underwritten public offering. Also issues 30-day options to underwriters to purchase 600,000 additional shares to cover possible overallotments.

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

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