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Novartis (NVS) Posts Positive Data From Prostate Cancer Study

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Novartis AG (NVS - Free Report) announced the first interpretable data from a late-stage study evaluating the efficacy and safety of its radioligand therapy, 177Lu-PSMA-617, for treating patients with progressive PSMA-positive metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).

The phase III VISION study met both primary endpoints of overall survival and radiographic progression-free survival in the given patient population. The safety profile of the candidate was similar to data reported in previous studies.

Shares of Novartis have declined 8.7% so far this year compared with the industry’s decrease of 0.2%.

price chart for NVS


With this positive result, 177Lu-PSMA-617 is inching closer to becoming the targeted treatment option for more than 80% of patients with advanced prostate cancer. Regulatory filing for 177Lu-PSMA-617 in the United States and in the EU are expected to be submitted later in 2021.

Per the press release, Novartis is the only company pursuing four different cancer treatment platforms– radioligand therapy, cell and gene therapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy. The company remains focused on reimagining prostate cancer through targeted radioligand therapy with 177Lu-PSMA-617.

Novartis acquired Endocyte to expand expertise in radiopharmaceuticals and transformational therapeutic platforms.

Notably, 177Lu-PSMA-617 is a first-in-class radioligand and therapeutic that targets prostate-specific membrane antigen, or PSMA. Successful development of this candidate will broaden its already strong oncology portfolio.

We note that Novartis has a strong oncology portfolio and continues to work on developing its immuno-oncology pipeline.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Novartis currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks in the healthcare sector include Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Free Report) , Zoetis Inc. (ZTS - Free Report) and Repligen Corporation (RGEN - Free Report) , all carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Johnson & Johnson’s earnings estimates have been revised 6.6% upward for 2021 and 4.9% for 2022 over the past 60 days. The stock has inched up 1.8% year to date.

Zoetis’ earnings estimates have been revised 4.8% upward for 2021 and 4.2% for 2022 over the past 60 days.

Repligen’searnings estimates have been revised 15.1% upward for 2021 and 9.8% for 2022 over the past 60 days.The stock has increased 7.8% year to date.

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