Market Overview

CAR-T Therapy Stocks Hit Hard Following AACR Data

CAR-T Therapy Stocks Hit Hard Following AACR Data

Two major biotech conferences got underway this past weekend, and new data that was presented is already having a big impact on the stock market. Here’s a summary of what happened.

CAR-T Disappointment

Data on the CAR-T treatment developed by Novartis AG (NYSE: NVS) presented at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Conference in Philadelphia was somewhat discouraging. Five patients undergoing CAR-T cancer treatment as part of a study on the therapy demonstrated little improvement.

However, in addition to the five unaffected patients, malignant cells surrounding the lungs of one patient were cleared during the treatment, and the study is still in the very early stages, so all hope may not yet be lost for CAR-T therapy.

Related Link: It's A Big Weekend For Biotech

Cannacord analyst John Newman called the CAR-T results “modest at best.”

CAR-T Stocks React

Novartis’ stock is trading nearly flat on the day, but the data seems to have had a greater impact on other CAR-T names.

Juno Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: JUNO), Kite Pharma Inc (NASDAQ: KITE) and ZIOPHARM Oncology Inc (NASDAQ: ZIOP) are all down more than 7.5 percent following the news. Bellicum Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: BLCM) is trading flat.

Other Biotech Names

Stocks of most of the other companies presenting at the AACR Conference are showing little reaction following the weekend sessions. Infinity Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: INFI) is trading slightly down, while shares of Bristol-Mysers Squibb Co (NYSE: BMY), Merck & Co Inc (NYSE: MRK) and Pharmacyclics Inc (NASDAQ: PCYC) are all up less than 2 percent on Monday.

Incyte Corp (NASDAQ: INCY) shares are showing a nice 2.7 percent gain.

No earth-shattering news appears to have come out of the American Academy of Neurology Conference this weekend, as shares of Biogen Inc (NASDAQ: BIIB), PTC Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: PTCT), Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: ISIS) and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: ALNY) are all trading within 2 percent of last week’s closing prices.

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