Market Overview

Specialty Oncology Drugs One of the Top Markets Generating Most Growth


Specialty Oncology Drugs One of the Top Markets Generating Most Growth

PR Newswire

PALM BEACH, Florida, July 31, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- News Commentary 

Key drivers impacting the market growth of Oncology Drug Candidates are globalization of clinical trials, development of new treatments such as personalized medicine, augmenting evolution in technology and boosting demand to conduct clinical trials. The oncology segment is anticipated to witness the fastest growth. According to various sources, more than USD $38.0 Billion is currently spent by the healthcare industry towards preclinical and clinical development of oncology therapy products. Hence, it is anticipated to grow at a lucrative CAGR and contribute over USD $15.0 Billion towards the clinical trials market by 2025. Advances in new treatments have made cancer a hot investing theme over the past 18 months, helping to power fresh interest in biotechnology stocks. Active companies in the markets today include: Moleculin Biotech, Inc. (NASDAQ:MBRX), OPKO Health, Inc. (NASDAQ:OPK), Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG), Nektar Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NKTR), BioTime, Inc. (NYSE:BTX).

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 enrollment has opened for a physician-sponsored clinical trial of WP1066 for the treatment of glioblastoma and brain metastases in adults.

"We have been eagerly awaiting the beginning of this physician sponsored clinical trial," commented Walter Klemp, Chairman and CEO of Moleculin. "The trial, which is now listed on and being conducted at MD Anderson Cancer Center, is now open for enrollment. This is our first investigator initiated trial of WP1066 and an important milestone. Given the unique potential of WP1066, we expect more trials to follow."

The goal of this clinical research study is to find the highest tolerable dose of WP1066 that can be given to patients with recurrent (has returned after treatment) cancerous brain tumors or melanoma that has spread to the brain. The safety of this drug will also be studied.

WP1066 is designed to target the STAT3 pathway in cancer cells, which makes these cells divide, increases new blood vessels to the tumor, causes the cancer cells to move throughout the body and brain, and avoids them being detected by the immune system. We believe that targeting this pathway may cause the immune system to kill the cancer cells. Read this and more news for Moleculin Biotech at:

In other pharma and biotech developments in the markets of note this week: 

Opko Health Inc. (NASDAQ:OPK) recently announced its partner Vifor Fresenius Medical Care Renal Pharma (VFMCRP) has received approval from Health Canada to market RAYALDEE® in Canada for the treatment of secondary hyperparathyroidism (SHPT) in adults with stage 3 or 4 chronic kidney disease (CKD) and vitamin D insufficiency. "We established a global development and commercialization plan for RAYALDEE as this therapy addresses an important medical need in CKD patients worldwide, and we want to ensure that as many people as possible have access to its benefits," stated Phillip Frost, M.D., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of OPKO Health. "We congratulate our partner Vifor Fresenius on their achievement and thank them for the dedication and hard work they put into reaching this milestone event."

Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG) recently announced results from a phase III, randomized, double-blind, international clinical study (AUGMENT). REVLIMID® (lenalidomide) plus rituximab (R2) achieved a highly statistically significant improvement in the primary endpoint of progression-free survival (PFS), compared to rituximab plus placebo, in the final PFS analysis. AUGMENT evaluated the efficacy and safety of the investigational combination of R2 versus rituximab plus placebo in patients (N=358) with relapsed/refractory follicular and marginal zone lymphoma. In addition to achieving the primary endpoint of the study, a favorable trend was observed for overall survival (OS) during this analysis and follow-up will continue for the mature OS results. The safety profile of R2 was consistent with the known safety profiles of the individual medicines, and no new safety signals were identified with the combination.

Nektar Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NKTR) recently announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has filed and accepted for review the company's New Drug Application (NDA) for NKTR-181 for the treatment of chronic low back pain in adult patients new to opioid therapy. NKTR-181 is a new molecular entity (NME) and the first analgesic opioid molecule to exhibit a low incidence of specific CNS-mediated side effects, such as euphoria, through the targeted alteration of brain-entry kinetics. The NDA is expected to be assigned a PDUFA (Prescription Drug User Fee Act) target action date of May 28, 2019 by the FDA. Nektar's NDA submission is supported by an extensive clinical and nonclinical data package. The clinical data submitted in the NDA comprised 15 studies in 2,234 subjects and includes a 600-patient efficacy study in patients with chronic low back pain who are new to opioid therapy; a 630-patient long-term 52-week safety study in patients with noncancer pain, who are new to opioid therapy, as well as those who are experienced with opioid therapy; pharmacokinetic/ pharmacodynamic studies in over 450 subjects; and two human abuse potential studies evaluating both therapeutic and supratherapeutic doses of NKTR-181 versus an oxycodone control in recreational drug users.

BioTime, Inc. (NYSE:BTX) recently announced that its abstract "PI/IIa Study of Subretinally Transplanted Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived RPE Cells in Advanced Dry-Form AMD Patients," has been accepted for an oral presentation at the upcoming American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) meeting taking place from October 27th - October 30th, 2018, in Chicago, Illinois. "We are delighted that the AAO has accepted our abstract for an oral presentation at the upcoming meeting," said Adi Mohanty, Co-Chief Executive Officer of BioTime. "We look forward to sharing more data from the ongoing OpRegen clinical trial where we have observed signals that may suggest structural improvement in the retina.".

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