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Galena Biopharma, Inc. (GALE) Mounts Multiple Successful Attacks On Cancer

|Includes: SELLAS Life Sciences Group, Inc. (SLS)

"I've had several friends who've had (breast cancer) and then . . . it came back and they had to go through treatment again. So this would be wonderful, not to have to come back."

These are the words of the first phase 3 patient testing NeuVax, being developed by Galena Biopharma to bolster the immune response in breast cancer patients. Based upon trials up to this point, it's a powerful development. In previous trials, the numbers have been more than encouraging. Released results, recently written up in a positive review by The Motley Fool, indicate that breast cancer patients taking Neuvax experienced a recurrence rate of only 5.6% compared with a 25.9% recurrence rate in the control arm, representing an improvement of over 78%. It could be a blockbuster drug, already catching the eye of investors and big pharma because of the size of the market involved.

Nearly ΒΌ million new cases of invasive breast cancer are diagnosed in the U.S. annually, with over 39,000 associated deaths. Next to lung cancer, breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in women. But there are also 2.8 million breast cancer survivors, people anxious to ensure that the disease doesn't return. NeuVax, because of its unique ability to target the HER2 growth protein, can be used to help the body target and kill undetected cancer cells before they grow into metastatic tumors.

But NeuVax is not the only Galena product candidate targeting a major cancer market. The company's Folate Binding Protein (NYSE:FBP) is a highly immunogenic peptide that can stimulate the immune system to recognize and destroy preclinical FBP-expressing cancer cells. FBP is over-expressed in more than 90% of ovarian and endometrial cancers, as well as 20%-50% of breast, lung, colorectal, and renal cell carcinomas. This vaccine is currently in a Phase 1/2 trial in two gynecological cancers: ovarian and endometrial adenocarcinomas.

In addition, Abstral is the company's therapy for breakthrough cancer pain in opioid-tolerant cancer patients, already approved by the FDA. It is estimated that at least 40% of cancer patients experience breakthrough pain episodes multiple times per day, each with a median duration of 30 minutes. The innovative Abstral formulation rapidly dissolves under the tongue in seconds, providing rapid relief of breakthrough pain in minutes, and matching the duration of the entire pain episode.

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