Merrimack cancer drug needs partners to hit its primary endpoint

In a Phase 3 clinical trial Merrimack Pharmaceuticals' (MACK) cancer drug MM-398 (irinotecan encapsulation injection) achieved its primary endpoint of a statistically significant improvement in overall survival (OS) in pancreatic cancer patients when given in combination with 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and leucovorin. The combo regimen achieved an overall survival of 6.1 months, a 1.9 month improvement over the control arm.

When administered as a monotherapy, however, MM-398 failed to meet its primary endpoint. Patients receiving the drug achieved an OS of 4.9 months versus 4.2 months in the control arm. The modest improvement was not statistically significant.

There was a higher level of adverse events in patients receiving the monotherapy compared to the combination regimen.

Shares are up 84% premarket on mediocre volume.

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Comments (6)
  • TruffelPig
    , contributor
    Comments (4208) | Send Message
    Ok, one probably could have not written this much more negative. THis is pancreatic cancer we are talking about and practically NOTHING helps. This is great news!
    1 May 2014, 08:40 AM Reply Like
  • gmanwicksy
    , contributor
    Comments (131) | Send Message
    Hmm 1.9 months as a combo, and nothing as a monotherapy makes me believe that the pop in share price was overdone, profit taking probably wise move here.
    1 May 2014, 12:36 PM Reply Like
  • Ron Alwin
    , contributor
    Comments (75) | Send Message
    Yeah...wise to take profits ...however JP Morgan raise target to 15 from take away those small profits...i'm hoping mr. JPM has better info then you.


    also mediocre volume....Huh...are you looking at the same stock i'm looking at???


    alot of short covering today...with more to come...i believe there is a 20 day to cover on this stock...but after the volume today it has to be much shorter.
    1 May 2014, 01:06 PM Reply Like
  • TruffelPig
    , contributor
    Comments (4208) | Send Message
    That is typical that the traders now take their profits while the pros (hint, me ;) ) slowly move in, establish a long-term position and grow. In the end they pay less taxes on their larger profits :).


    What gman writes is somewhat nonsense when you consider that we are dealing with PANCREATIC cancer here. There is NOTHING that helps as mono because it is an incredibly aggressive cancer. There is still a lot of treatment to be made considering that there are roughly 45,000 cases in the US alone annually and this cancer is getting more frequent.


    I will be honest, I bought shares today and keep them because I saw the beast from very close distance. My father would have loved to be able to get his fingers on this drug! The other combination that is used in the end is INCREDIBLY rough and a torture (5FU). They always start with gemcitabine, sometimes in combo with terzeva. Then they measure the tumor markers. Eventually they go up and they have to switch. From there it is very rapid and cruel.


    I wish someone would find something MUCH better! But this is much better than nothing.
    1 May 2014, 01:20 PM Reply Like
  • bexpo
    , contributor
    Comments (256) | Send Message
    Truffle Pig - Did you get in early? Did you make the 50% - or were all those gains pre-market trading?
    1 May 2014, 05:00 PM Reply Like
  • TruffelPig
    , contributor
    Comments (4208) | Send Message
    I did not get in early - I got in after the news and will hold. Call me a bag holder but I like my chances here in getting a double pretty easy in one year.
    1 May 2014, 05:14 PM Reply Like
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