Top Health Care Stocks
Health care stocks have turned higher this afternoon, reversing earlier declines, with the NYSE Health Care Index advancing around 0.3% while shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 also were up about 0.3% as a group.
In company news, Pfizer ( PFE ) shares were slightly higher Tuesday after the pharmaceuticals giant this morning said it was partnering with Merck KGaA to advance clinical development of the German drugmaker's Avelumab immuno-oncology product candidate with additional Phase III testing in patients with platinum-resistant/refractory ovarian cancer.
The primary endpoint of both randomized, open-label studies will be overall survival.
Separately, Pfizer last night said its Pristiq extended-release anti-depressive failed to demonstrate superior efficacy compared with a placebo during Phase III testing in pediatric patients aged 7 to 17 with major depressive disorder.
The study was evaluating the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor also known as or desvenlafaxine succinate. The drug similarly failed to demonstrate efficacy in an earlier study conducted under the Pediatric Research Equity Act as part of an FDA post-marketing commitment.
PFE shares were up about 0.3% at $32.56 each, earlier climbing to a session high of $32.62 a share.
In other sector news,
(+) PSDV, (+29.2%) Medidur drug candidate meets primary efficacy endpoint of preventing recurrence of posterior uveitis in the back of the eye during Phase III testing. Safety results also were positive.
(-) BCLI, (-6.5%) Maxim Group reduces price target for the company's stock by $9 - or about 64% - to $5 a share. Reiterates Buy recommendation.
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