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OXiGENE soars 17% on positive results of thyroid cancer drug trial

|Includes: Mateon Therapeutics, Inc. (MATN)

Biopharmaceutical company OXiGENE, (Nasdaq:OXGN) has announced results from a Phase 2/3 study of ZYBRESTAT, a small-molecule drug used to treat certain types of thyroid cancer, indicating a reduction in the risk of death by 29%.

In the 80-patient study, the median overall survival time was 5.1 months for patients who received ZYBRESTAT and chemotherapy, when compared with a median survival time of 4.1 months for patients receiving chemotherapy alone.

At one year, 23% of patients treated with ZYBRESTAT and chemotherapy were alive, compared to 9% of patients treated with chemotherapy alone, more than doubling the number.

Side effects for those using the drug in the trial included neutropenia, transient hypertension and tumor pain.

"The results of this study show a clearly demonstrated survival benefit with only transient, manageable side effects," said Michael Tuttle, M.D., endocrinologist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

"ZYBRESTAT plus chemotherapy has demonstrated the first significant increase in overall survival without serious side effects in patients with anaplastic thyroid cancer, which should make this an attractive therapeutic intervention for patients for whom there are no other approved effective therapies," he continued.

ZYBRESTAT has received orphan drug designation for the treatment of anaplastic thyroid cancer, medullary thyroid cancer, and stage IV papillary or follicular thyroid cancer.

The company plans to report additional data in due course, including a month of follow-up plus a sub-group analysis, and expects to share clinical data soon on ZYBRESTAT in other types of cancer, such as non-small cell lung cancer.

ZYBRESTAT works to deprive tumors of oxygen and causes death of tumor cells.

OXiGENE is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapeutics to treat cancer and eye diseases. The company's major focus is developing vascular disrupting agents (VDAs) that selectively disrupt abnormal blood vessels associated with solid tumor progression and visual impairment.

The company soared more than 17% on Monday, reaching highs of $0.32 at 12:42pm ET on the Nasdaq

Disclosure: no position