Ahead of the Bell: Epizyme shares jump

Epizyme shares jump after drug developer notches payments, updates on leukemia treatment

Associated Press

Epizyme will book a $25 million payment after a potential leukemia treatment reached an early milestone, sending company shares rocketing 34 percent before the opening bell Tuesday.

The drug developer, which has no products on the market, has U.S. rights to EPZ-5676, an experimental drug in early-stage testing for patients with genetically defined acute leukemia.

Epizyme plans to present results from its study of EPZ-5676 at a medical conference later this year.

Epizyme, based in Cambridge, Mass., also gets a $4 million payment from British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline for a separate collaboration.

Wedbush analyst Gregory Wade reiterated his "outperform" rating and $37 price target on company shares, saying the early results represent an important milestone.

Shares of Epizyme Inc. climbed $7 to $27.50 in premarket trading. Celgene shares rose $1.98 to $164.60.

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