Spectrum's Comeback Climb Continues Print E-mail
By Staff and Wire Reports   
Tuesday, 10 November 2009 03:00

Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (SPPI) which has been quitely climbing since it's low of $3.99 on October 28th, closed Monday at $4.79 up $0.12 (+2.57%) and will likely gap up again this morning on news of a new deal in Asia.

The Orange County California based biotechnology company with a primary focus in oncology, and Nippon Kayaku today announced an exclusive collaboration for the development and commercialization of apaziquone in Asia. Apaziquone is an antineoplastic agent which has been fast tracked by the FDA as a treatment of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer by intravesical instillation.

Spectrum Pharmaceuticals has previously entered into a strategic collaboration with Allergan, Inc. (NYSE: AGN) for North America, Europe, and other key markets. These two collaborations are representative of the Company’s stated objective of achieving solid strategic partnerships that are aimed at fully exploiting developmental goals for apaziquone on a worldwide basis.

“We are excited to partner apaziquone with a strong Japanese oncology company such as Nippon Kayaku,” said Rajesh C. Shrotriya, MD, Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, and President of Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. “Nippon Kayaku is one of the most established and reputable pharmaceutical companies in Japan and has unparalleled experience in Asia in the field of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer and prostate cancer. We believe that Nippon Kayaku is a terrific strategic partner for apaziquone and for Spectrum.”

“Apaziquone is an ideal candidate to complement our portfolio of 24 anti-cancer products,” said Akira Mandai, Head of Pharmaceuticals Group of Nippon Kayaku. “We look forward to working with Spectrum in developing apaziquone for non-muscle invasive bladder cancer.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Nippon Kayaku will pay Spectrum an upfront payment of $15 million and will make additional payments of up to $136 million based on the achievement of certain regulatory and commercialization milestones.

The stock should continue to climb steadily as Spectrum is currently conducting two Phase 3 clinical trials to investigate apaziquone’s safety and efficacy in non-muscle invasive bladder cancer. Spectrum’s goal is to complete enrollment in both Phase 3 studies by the end of this year.

Last week, said the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized a policy ruling to allow reimbursement for the company's cancer drug, Zevalin, effective Jan. 1, 2010.

Analysts said they had been expecting CMS to allow reimbursement for Zevalin, but added they do not expect a significant ramp in sales until the first quarter of 2010.

"This is very good news for the company -- long term, it will help generate sales given the ease with which physicians will get reimbursed," Rodman & Renshaw senior biotechnology analyst Reni Benjamin said.

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