|Day's range||1.3800 - 1.7600|
Stunning employment data fed into growing optimism about cities and states relaxing the coronavirus-related restrictions that have hobbled activity and crushed the jobs market.
FDA Approves Merck’s RECARBRIO for the Treatment of Adults with Hospital-Acquired and Ventilator-Associated Bacterial Pneumonia (HABP/VABP)
Spending on pet health continues to climb. Investors should consider buying PetMed Express, Phibro Animal Health, and Merck & Co.
Box, Ulta Beauty, Merck, Gilead and Johnson & Johnson highlighted as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day
LYNPARZA Receives Positive Opinion from EU CHMP for First-Line Maintenance of Patients with Germline BRCA-Mutated Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer
(Bloomberg) -- The year’s biggest meeting of cancer researchers was subjected to a coronavirus overhaul this year, but even in scaled-back form it forced investors to recalibrate their expectations for some closely watched medicines.The American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting is the field’s most important gathering each spring, providing a stage for major pharmaceutical companies to unveil major findings and tout promising treatments. It’s also an annual opportunity for all kinds of researchers, doctors, executives and investors to rub elbows.With Covid-19 making travel uncomfortable and splashy conferences impossible this year, the summit was mostly a virtual affair. Still, it delivered many of the kinds of important victories and stinging setbacks it often does. And the meeting showed that even as the drug industry races to identify virus treatments and vaccines, cancer remains perhaps its most important business overall.“When the coronavirus wanes and we have a vaccine, and this infectious disease is brought under control, we will still have cancer and the need for new treatments,” said Richard Schilsky, ASCO’s chief medical officer, in an interview. “We have millions of patients around the world who need new and improved treatments for cancer.”Among the most noteworthy winners was U.K. pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca Plc, which reported that its blockbuster Tagrisso reduced the risk of dying from lung cancer or relapse by four-fifths over three years. The drug is already AstraZeneca’s biggest product, bringing in $982 million in sales in the first quarter alone.Some smaller drug companies also logged what looked like significant victories: Trillium Therapeutics Inc. said that a second patient taking its experimental lymphoma therapy responded to the treatment. Shares of Trillium, which has a market value of about $560 million, surged more than 17% on FridayAnd as ASCO played out, other big cancer-research news also roiled drugmaker stocks.Pfizer Inc. shares fell 5.1% in trading before U.S. exchanges opened Monday after the U.S. drug bellwether said a late-stage study of its treatment for metastatic breast cancer, Ibrance, was unlikely to show a statistically significant improvement in invasive disease-free survival for patients with early breast cancer.Though the Covid-19 pandemic has been the defining story of the health-care business this year, the ASCO meeting was a reminder that most of the world’s pharmaceutical companies remain keenly focused on finding new cancer treatments to generate profits. And that focus has paid off for patients: The U.S. death rate from cancer has been falling at a record pace, thanks largely to big advances in treating lung tumors.Data presented at the meeting showed progress in combating the second leading cause of death worldwide, Schilsky said. Researchers found medicines used for patients with advanced disease can have an even bigger benefit for those with recently diagnosed tumors, while medicines are emerging that are effective against a wide range of tumors that are driven by specific gene mutations.Deals Getting DoneLarge drugmakers have remained on the prowl for promising cancer therapies that they can acquire through mergers or other transactions. Even Gilead Sciences Inc., which has been in the headlines because of its potential coronavirus treatment remdesivir, has been getting cancer-focused deals done against the backdrop of the pandemic.Last week, Gilead agreed to work on immunotherapy drugs with biotech Arcus Biosciences Inc. And earlier this year it agreed to buy cancer-drug maker Forty Seven for $4.9 billion. Gilead has been pressured by investors to find new drugs that can take the place of some of its aging blockbusters. It made another big bet on cancer when it bought Kite Pharma and its drug Yescarta, though sales of the highly priced genetic therapy have so far failed to live up to expectations.At ASCO, Gilead presented encouraging new data on magrolimab, an immunology drug that was developed by Forty Seven, a sign that the company’s wager could pay off. Gilead’s management is successfully building a pipeline of potential new therapies, Jefferies & Co. analyst Michael Yee said in a note sent to clients.Gilead shares dropped 1.5% early Monday. They now have gained about 20% so far this year, in part because of excitement over remdesivir.Breakthroughs at ASCO could make smaller companies enticing to Gilead and to other giants looking to add to their rosters of experimental therapies. Adaptimmune Therapeutics Plc’s U.S.-traded shares more than doubled in value after the company presented early studies for therapies that could treat a number of cancers, including lung and head and neck tumors.Allogene Therapeutics Inc., which is developing a CAR-T therapy similar to Yescarta, gained 3.5% Friday after it said its treatment benefited 63% of patients with blood cancer in an early-stage trial. Allogene’s founders ran Kite Pharma before selling it to Gilead for $11 billion in 2017.Dueling GiantsLike Gilead, Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. has also sought to refashion itself into a cancer-fighting juggernaut, mostly notably with its $74 billion takeover of Celgene Corp. last year. Even before that transaction, the company was locked in a battle with rival Merck & Co. for supremacy in the market for lung-cancer immunotherapies.Merck’s Keytruda and Bristol-Myers’s Opdivo are blockbusters for each company, and the drugmakers have raced to expand their use in a range of tumor types. But at ASCO, a study of Opdivo in combination with another Bristol-Myers drug, Yervoy, supported what JPMorgan Chase & Co. analyst Chris Schott said in a note was a “niche role” in treating certain lung-cancer patients -- not one that will upset Keytruda’s dominance.Bristol-Myers shares declined 0.2% on Friday, while Merck advanced 2.1%. Both were little changed before U.S. markets opened Monday.Last year, Opdivo generated $7.2 billion in revenue for Bristol-Myers, while Yervoy brought in $1.5 billion. Together, the two drugs accounted for roughly a third of the company’s sales. Meanwhile, Keytruda generated $11 billion for Merck, about 24% of its sales.Another challenge to Keytruda may come from Switzerland’s cancer titan Roche Holding AG. The drugmaker presented data at ASCO showing that combining the experimental tiragolumab with one of its proven medicines, Tecentriq, worked better than prescribing Tecentriq alone in patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer. The phase 2 data suggests it “could potentially compete with Merck’s Keytruda in a segment of lung-cancer patients,” wrote Cinney Zhang of Bloomberg Intelligence.Some Chinese drugmakers also showed promising findings in liver cancer. A combination from Innovent Biologics Inc. showed initial efficacy comparable to Roche in hepatocellular carcinoma, for which China accounts for almost than half of new cases. Innovent shares surged 10% in Hong Kong trading Monday.(Updates with share moves for Pfizer, Gilead and Innovent in eighth, 14th and last paragraphs)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Keytruda reduced the risk of disease progression or death by 40% compared to chemotherapy. Put another way, patients treated with Keytruda lived for 16.5 months without their tumors starting to grow, compared to 8.2 months for patients treated with chemotherapy.
What investor doesn't want to own a solid company with exciting prospects for business growth in the near- and mid-term? Here we explore a few interesting opportunities ranging from a big pharma name to a pre-revenue biotech. If you want a solid stock that allows you to sleep soundly at night, buy Merck (NYSE: MRK).
KEYTRUDA® plus LENVIMA® Combination Demonstrated Clinically Meaningful Tumor Response Rates in Unresectable HCC and ccRCC
Merck’s KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab) Superior to Standard of Care Chemotherapy in Patients with MSI-H Colorectal Cancer
As the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic continues, the search for a vaccine is not slowing down.
Merck (MRK) reported earnings 30 days ago. What's next for the stock? We take a look at earnings estimates for some clues.
Nobody will get preferential access to a potential COVID-19 drug developed by vaccine maker Themis Bioscience, which is being bought by U.S. pharmaceuticals firm Merck & Co Inc, the Austrian firm's chief executive said on Thursday. "Merck has already demonstrated in the past ... that it makes vaccines available to anybody who needs them," Erich Tauber told Reuters on Thursday, adding a potential vaccine would be made available globally. "It is one of the reasons why we have decided to cooperate with Merck."
The three major indexes closed in the green on Tuesday, as investors remained hopeful about coronavirus vaccine and that economies around the globe were recovering from the pandemic-driven lockdown over the past few months.
Merck (MRK) to buy Themis, which is making a COVID-19 vaccine. It is also buying global rights to a private biotech's antiviral candidate, EIDD-2801, which is in early clinical studies to treat COVID-19.
The big pharma has finally joined its peers, launching multiple projects aimed at stopping COVID-19 in its tracks.
Stocks jumped Tuesday, and the S&P 500 traded above 3,000 for the first time since March 5, as hopes for an effective coronavirus vaccine combined with optimism over updates around states’ reopenings. Each of the S&P 500 and Dow traded above 2% shortly after market open.
Novavax announced it would begin human trials for its coronavirus vaccine, while COVID-19 engulfs Brazil.
Biotech firm Novavax has entered its coronavirus vaccine in a Phase 1 clinical trial in Australia — the first in the Southern Hemisphere.
Merck & Co Inc <MRK.N>, which has largely kept to the sidelines of the race for COVID-19 treatments, said it was buying Austrian vaccine maker Themis Bioscience and would collaborate with research nonprofit IAVI to develop two separate vaccines. It also announced a partnership with privately held Ridgeback Biotherapeutics to develop an experimental oral antiviral drug against COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus. Merck did not disclose the terms of the acquisition of Themis, a privately held company.
Merck and Ridgeback Bio Collaborate to Advance Development of Novel Antiviral Candidate, EIDD-2801