|Talon Therapeutics Looks Undervalued Following FDA Approval|
|By Brian Wilson, Contributor|
|Friday, 10 August 2012 04:03|
Marqibo is a targeted version of a generic chemotherapeutic agent known as vincristine, which has been around for nearly fifty years. This has diminished investor excitement over Marqibo’s development, and investors who’ve followed the drug in the past may remember the FDA rejection in 2005 for the treatment of relapsed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that allowed Talon to license Marqibo on the cheap.
Talon’s Marqibo is special, however, since it was developed for use in older adults (aged 60 or older). This demographic has been difficult for conventional ALL therapies, which include radiation and chemotherapy which can cause complications quite easily in older patients. Comments by Talon indicate that the company is expecting to reach approximately 2,000 US patients per year with the current FDA approval.
There is also hope that Marqibo will be able to tap into the ~2 million patient market that generic vincristine sells to. This may be possible due to Marqibo’s ability to deliver a dosage of vincristine itself that is much more potent while having the same safety profile as the original. Since chemotherapy leaves patients especially frail, this is a vital aspect of the treatment’s success. It seems that patient’s great tolerance is paving the way for Marqibo to finally succeed.
We are also going to see an NDA to bring Marqibo to market for front-line treatment of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after additional phase III data is collected and compiled to address issues brought up in 2005, when it was rejected.
Even if Talon’s penny-stock status may seem daunting, there is substantial value that is locked into Marqibo that apparently isn’t recognized by main stream investors. It is certainly optimistic to say that a very significant portion of vincrinstine’s enormous pool of sales could be quickly given to a replacement drug that barely made it past FDA approval right off the bat, but I also want to point out that it wouldn’t take much market penetration to bring this 21.5 million dollar company to profitability. Remember that approval down the road in non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma treatment could also weigh in quite heavily on the company’s value.
Ultimately, it would seem likely that TLON shares will see higher ground as Marqibo finally gets brought to cancer patients. Speculators might want to play the eventual NDA on non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma treatment too.