Bloomberg News

Onyx Jumps as Cancer Drug Improves Survival in Study

October 26, 2011

(Updates shares in second paragraph.)

Oct. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc. jumped the most in 10 months after partner Bayer AG ended a late-stage trial of the cancer medicine regorafenib early because the treatment improved survival of patients with colon tumors.

Onyx rose 9.6 percent to $39.46 at 4 p.m. New York time, the most since Dec. 7. The shares of the South San Francisco, California-based company are up 7 percent this year.

The medicine helped patients with metastatic colorectal cancer live longer than a placebo, and an independent committee monitoring the data recommended all patients in the study be offered the treatment, Onyx said today in a statement. Regorafenib’s safety was “generally as expected,” the company said. It didn’t provide further details on the data.

“Approval probability is high given an overall survival benefit,” Biren Amin of Jefferies & Co. in New York wrote in a research note today. The analyst estimates regorafenib may receive marketing clearance and start selling in 2013, with the potential to draw up to $400 million in annual sales.

The data were from the third and final stage of trials generally required for U.S. approval. Bayer, based in Leverkusen, Germany, is in discussions with regulators in Europe and the U.S. on the steps for filing for marketing clearance, Onyx said in the statement.

Bayer and Onyx settled a lawsuit earlier this month over the promotion of regorafenib, agreeing that Bayer will pay Onyx a 20 percent royalty on the medicine for use in oncology.

--With assistance from Andrew Dunn in New York. Editors: Angela Zimm, Reg Gale

To contact the reporter on this story: Meg Tirrell in New York at mtirrell@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reg Gale at rgale5@bloomberg.net


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