Shares of Loxo Oncology Inc. (NASDAQ: LOXO), a biopharmaceutical company, soared Thursday after the cancer specialist revealed that its drug LOXO-292 shrunk tumors in as many as 70% of cancer patients who took part in an ongoing Phase 1 clinical trial.
In response to the news, investors sent up Loxo Oncology shares by 21% to US$168.70.
Stephen Willey, an analyst with Stifel, also raised his price target on the company's stock to US$190, arguing that the potency of LOXO-292 sets Loxo Oncology apart from its competitors who produce less-effective RET inhibitors.
LOXO-292, which addresses RET gene mutated cancers, was handled well by patients with late-stage cancers who had exhausted other available treatments.
The medicine is meant for cancer patients with faulty RET genes where two genes have become fused together, which fuels cancer growth.
In cancer patients with fused RET genes, roughly 69% of those who were assessed in Loxo's study saw tumors shrink, regardless of the type of cancer, and the tumors were reduced by as much as 67% in size.
A short analysis of preliminary data from its ongoing Phase 1 clinical trial for LOXO-292 was unveiled ahead of a presentation next month at the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s Annual meeting to be held from June 1-5 in Chicago.