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Small Cap to Large Cap Pharma Companies Positioning to Capitalize on Resurgent Biotech Industry


Small Cap to Large Cap Pharma Companies Positioning to Capitalize on Resurgent Biotech Industry

PR Newswire

PALM BEACH, Florida, April 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- News Commentary 

Biotech research analysts and fund managers are increasingly becoming more and more interested in the growing resurgence within the biotech and pharma industries these days. Among the key factors driving the rebound are development of revolutionary new drugs, the aging American population, and slashing regulatory hurdles at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The industry is seeing innovation across all a wide spectrum of key themes including prognosis and biopharmaceutical development, oncology-related gene therapies, muscular sclerosis as well as epilepsy treatments. According to a research report published by Grand View Research, the global biotech sector is currently surging again and on track to a possible value of $727 billion by 2025. The rising emergence of these key themes in the biotechnology market is expected to drive growth in the biotech industry to a lucrative extent and will most likely be generated by regenerative medicines and genetics in diagnostics. Active companies in the markets today include: Moleculin Biotech, Inc. (NASDAQ:MBRX), Eleven Biotherapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:EBIO), SELLAS Life Sciences Group Inc. (NYSE:SLS), Flexion Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:FLXN), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE).

Moleculin Biotech, Inc. (NASDAQ:MBRX) BREAKING NEWS: Moleculin Biotech, a clinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development of oncology drug candidates, all of which are based on license agreements with The University of Texas System on behalf of the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, today announced that patients have successfully begun treatment in its U.S. Phase I/II clinical trial of Annamycin for the treatment of relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia ("AML").  

The first patient enrolled in Moleculin's Annamycin clinical trial was treated at The University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center Seidman Cancer Center on March 28, 2018.  

"It is exciting to now have this trial fully under way," commented Walter Klemp, Chairman and CEO of Moleculin. "We are also pleased that the same Cancer Center has begun treatment of the second patient as well, so we are hopeful that the pace of recruitment will also meet our expectations. We continue to work toward opening additional U.S. sites to increase patients' access to this clinical trial." Read this and more news for Moleculin Biotech at:

In other pharma and biotech developments in the markets: 

Eleven Biotherapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:EBIO) recently announced that preliminary efficacy and safety data from its ongoing Phase 3 VISTA trial of Vicinium™ in patients with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) who have been previously treated with bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) have been selected for presentation during a plenary session currently scheduled for Monday, May 21, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. PT at the American Urological Association Annual Meeting taking place in San Francisco. Vicinium is a fusion protein, designed to be a next-generation ADC, that targets the epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) antigens on the surface of bladder cancer cells to deliver a potent cytotoxin into those cells. Data, as reported in the abstract published online today, are from a subgroup of the first 75 evaluable carcinoma in situ patients. Within these patients, preliminary findings show that greater than 95 percent expressed EpCAM on the surface of tumor cells, the target of Vicinium. Efficacy data as measured by complete response rates at three-months will be reported during the plenary session. Vicinium has been well-tolerated.

SELLAS Life Sciences Group Inc. (NYSE:SLS) recently announced positive interim data from the prospective, randomized, single-blinded, controlled Phase 2b independent investigator-sponsored clinical trial (IST) of trastuzumab (Herceptin®) +/- nelipepimut-S (NeuVax™)  in HER2 1+/2+ breast cancer patients in the adjuvant setting to prevent recurrences. A pre-specified interim analysis, conducted by an independent Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) of the efficacy and safety data for the study in an overall population of 275 patients as well as the two primary study target patient populations (node-positive and TNBC) after a median follow-up of 19 months,  demonstrated a clinically meaningful difference in median disease-free survival (DFS) in favor of the active arm (NeuVax + Herceptin), a primary endpoint of the study, with hazard ratios of 0.67 and 0.61 in the intent to treat (ITT) and modified ITT (mITT) populations (i.e., those who received at least one dose of vaccine or control) as well as a 34.9% and 39.5% reduction in relative risk of recurrence in the active versus control arms in the ITT and mITT populations, respectively.

Flexion Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:FLXN) close up over 12% on Tuesday at $24.55 with over 2.57 million shares traded by the market close.  Flexion Therapeutics (FLXN) is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel, local therapies for the treatment of patients with musculoskeletal conditions, beginning with osteoarthritis, a type of degenerative arthritis. The company's core values are focus, ingenuity, tenacity, transparency and fun. Flexion was named one of The Boston Business Journal's 2017 Best Places to Work and one of the Top Places to Work in Massachusetts by The Boston Globe.

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) earlier in the week, Pfizer and Allogene Therapeutics, Inc. (Allogene) announced that the two companies have entered into an asset contribution agreement for Pfizer's portfolio of assets related to allogeneic chimeric antigen receptor T cell (CAR T) therapy, an investigational immune cell therapy approach to treating cancer. Allogene, co-founded and led by former executives of Kite Pharma, is ideally positioned to catalyze the development of this allogeneic cell therapy portfolio. Arie Belldegrun, M.D., FACS, Founder and former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Kite, will serve as Executive Chairman, and David Chang, M.D., Ph.D., former Executive Vice President, Research and Development and Chief Medical Officer of Kite, will serve as President and Chief Executive Officer.

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