Healthcare Review: Galena Biopharma, Zimmer Holdings, Amgen, ChemoCentryx, Teva Print E-mail
By Staff and Wire Reports   
Friday, 23 August 2013 18:21
Treasuries and U.S. stocks rose as a report showing a plunge in home sales eased concern the Federal Reserve will cut stimulus efforts next month. Gold and oil rallied while the dollar weakened. Emerging-market equities gained for the first time in seven days. Fed officials meet today at a conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to discuss monetary policy. Purchases of new U.S. homes plunged in July by the most in more than three years, a sign that growth in the industry may be taking a pause as mortgage rates rise.

Galena Biopharma (GALE) continues to run and with today's gains the shares are up ~22% this week. On Wednesday the company said it was notified of the EU's intention to grant a pharmaceutical use patent for “NeuVax as a vaccine for the prevention of relapse in breast cancer patients."SA contributors Dutch Trader and Stock Whisper both had good things to say about NeuVax in articles published Thursday.

Despite CEO Jeremy Levin's promise to make Teva (TEVA) "the most indispensable medicines company in the world," the stock has "had one of the weakest performances this year of any large-cap drug maker trading on the New York Stock Exchange," writes Barron's Johanna Bennett. Some of the relative weakness is undoubtedly tied to worries about Copaxone which, thanks an appeals court's decision to invalidate a 2015 patent, could face generic competition as early as next May. This will make it effectively impossible for TEVA to convert users to a longer acting dosage (which the company expects will be approved next year) in time to head off rivals.

Zimmer Holdings (ZMH) says it's received FDA 510(k) clearance to market its Patient Specific Instruments Shoulder system to complement its Trabecular Metal Reverse Shoulder system for reverse shoulder arthroplasty procedures. The system uses 3-D visualization software to assist surgeons in creating a customized surgical plan for each patient, and then provides patient-specific surgical instrument guides to facilitate placement of the implant corresponding to the personalized surgical plan.

It looks like Amgen (AMGN) is in fact pushing for a price tag lower than the $130 a share it offered this month for Onyx Pharmaceuticals (ONXX -0.4%).The spat over access to trial data on Kyrpolis looks like it hasn't been resolved. Reports earlier this week suggested that the dispute over access to data on Kyprolis had been taken care of, with ONXX agreeing to provide the information. However, ONXX has apparently balked, saying the data pertains to sensitive patient data.

ChemoCentryx (CCXI) says the first of four Phase 3 studies of the CCR9 inhibitor vercirnon in patients with Crohn's disease "did not achieve the primary endpoint of improvement in clinical response and the key secondary endpoint of clinical remission."GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) will now "explore the safety and efficacy results to inform decisions about the clinical development program" for the drug.

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