Seattle Genetics, Inc. SGEN announced that it is likely to receive an undisclosed amount of milestone payment from British pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline GSK following the latter’s receipt of a conditional marketing authorization for its Blenrep (belantamab mafodotin) from the European Commission. Blenrep, an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) targeting B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA), is developed by Glaxo using Seattle Genetics’ proprietary technology.
In Europe, Blenrep is approved as a monotherapy for the treatment of multiple myeloma in adult patients who already received at least four prior therapies and whose disease is refractory to at least one proteasome inhibitor, one immunomodulatory agent and an anti-CD38 monoclonal antibody, having experienced disease progression on the last therapy.
Apart from the milestone fee, Seattle Genetics is eligible to receive further royalties on the worldwide net sales of Blenrep.
In August 2020, Seattle Genetics earned a $20-million milestone fee from Glaxo following the FDA approval of Blenrep. In the United States, the drug is approved for the treatment of relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma in patients who have been previously treated with an immunomodulatory agent, a proteasome inhibitor and an anti-CD38 antibody.
Shares of Seattle Genetics have rallied 34.8% so far this year compared with the industry’s increase of 1.3%.
Notably, Seattle Genetics has collaborations for its ADC technology with a number of biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. The company is developing its pipeline candidate tisotumab vedotin (TV) in alliance with Danish biotech Genmab GMAB. TV is being evaluated in the pivotal phase II innovaTV 204 study for the treatment of patients with recurrent/metastatic cervical cancer.
The company also has license agreements with several big companies for the development of its pipeline candidates and the label expansion studies of its marketed drugs.
Zacks Rank & Stock to Consider
Seattle Genetics currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked stock in the healthcare sector is Emergent BioSolutions Inc. EBS, which sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Emergent’s earnings estimates have moved 38.9% and 78.8% north for 2020 and 2021, respectively, over the past 60 days. The stock has skyrocketed 119.4% year to date.
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