October 16, 2012) – La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company (OTCQB: LJPC) (the "Company" and "La Jolla") announced today that researchers at UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have discovered the mechanism by which the Company's lead drug candidate, GCS-100, makes lymphoma cells more responsive to chemotherapy. The findings were published in the online edition of Blood, October 12, 2012, with printed publication to follow.
The study "Galectin-3 binds to CD45 on diffuse large B cell lymphoma cells to regulate susceptibility to cell death" was conducted by Dr. Linda G. Baum and her colleagues at UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. It focused on diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL), the most commonly diagnosed form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). The researchers were interested in finding out the mechanism by which these tumor cells can evade the action of chemotherapy agents.
Conclusions and Future Directions - Put simply, I believe that fibrosis, specifically kidney fibrosis, is a very important therapeutic area with a lot of potential for investors. While larger players such as INTM and VRTX are already on investors' radar with large market capitalizations, smaller, promising companies such as LJPC or GALT offer the potential for outsized rewards through increases in share price and M&A events. While these types of binary events are quite common and risky in biotech, it appears LJPC has an above average chance of success.