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Amgen Down on Unsatisfactory Heart Failure Drug Study Results

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Amgen Inc. (AMGN - Free Report) along with partners Cytokinetics, Incorporated (CYTK - Free Report) and Servier announced top-line data from the pivotal phase III GALACTIC-HF study, which is evaluating omecamtiv mecarbil, a novel cardiac myosin activator, developed for the treatment of heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF).

The study met the primary composite efficacy endpoint by demonstrating a statistically significant effect to reduce cardiovascular (CV) death or heart failure events when treated with omecamtiv mecarbil as compared to placebo.

However, omecamtiv mecarbil failed to achieve the secondary endpoint of reduction in CV death in the given patient population.

Shares of Amgen and Cytokinetics were down 6.8% and 42.1%, respectively, in response to the above news on Thursday.

In fact, Amgen’s stock has decreased 0.4% so far this year against the industry’s increase of 2.2%.

Meanwhile, additional analyses of the GALACTIC-HF study data are currently underway and results from the same will be presented at the upcoming American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions to be held next month. The study is being conducted by Cytokinetics in collaboration with Amgen while funding and strategic support came from Servier.

Another phase III study METEORIC-HF is currently ongoing to evaluate the effect of treatment with omecamtiv mecarbil compared to placebo on exercise capacity in patients with HFrEF.

Amgen has several interesting candidates in its pipeline, representing a significant commercial potential. The company is focusing on therapeutic areas like oncology/hematology, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, bone health, nephrology and neuroscience.

Important pipeline candidates include tezepelumab, which is in phase III evaluation for severe asthma and phase II for treating for atopic dermatitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Another candidate rozibafusp alfa is being investigated in a phase II study for addressing systematic lupus erythematosus.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Amgen currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks in the healthcare sector include AVEO Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (AVEO - Free Report) and Editas Medicine, Inc. (EDIT - Free Report) , both carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

AVEO’s loss per share estimates have narrowed 25.6% for 2020 and 28.6% for 2021 over the past 60 days. The stock has rallied 5.8% year to date.

Editas’ loss per share estimates have narrowed 3.6% for 2020 and 0.8% for 2021 over the past 60 days. The stock has increased 3.8% year to date.

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