Positive Data on Incyte's Jakafi

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Incyte Corporation (INCY) presented multiple analyses from several clinical studies on its lead product, Jakafi, at the 2013 American Society of Hematology (ASH) annual meeting. Results revealed that Jakafi was effective in improving overall survival in patients suffering from myelofibrosis (MFGLQ).

Incyte presented data from a three-year follow-up analysis from COMFORT-I and a pooled analysis of the two COMFORT studies on Jakafi. Results showed that spleen volume reductions were maintained in patients treated with Jakafi compared to those under placebo and best available therapy. Overall survival also improved in Jakafi treated patients compared to those treated with placebo and the best available therapy.

Results from a separate retrospective analysis revealed that treatment with Jakafi may reduce the risk of death by approximately 50% in comparison to conventional therapies. Moreover, an exploratory analysis of data collected over five years from a phase II study showed that Jakafi may stabilize/improve bone marrow fibrosis in patients suffering from MF.

We note that Jakafi is the first and only approved treatment for patients suffering from intermediate or high-risk MF in the U.S. Jakafi (ex-U.S. trade name: Jakavi) is marketed by Novartis (NVS) outside the U.S. The drug is also approved by the European Commission to treat adults suffering from primary MF, post-polycythemia vera MF or post-essential thrombocythemia MF. Incyte is looking to expand the drug’s label in other oncology indications as well.

Incyte recorded net product revenues of approximately $60.2 million from Jakafi sales in the third quarter of 2013, up 37.8% year over year. We expect investor focus to remain on Jakafi going forward.

Incyte also announced positive data from an interim analysis of a phase II study (n>85) on INCB39110 at the 2013 ASH annual meeting. INCB39110 is being developed for the treatment of patients suffering from intermediate or high-risk MF. Results revealed that meaningful improvements were observed in MF-related symptoms, including those associated with splenomegaly, in patients treated with INCB39110. We are encouraged by the company’s progress with its pipeline.

Incyte, a biopharmaceutical company, currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better ranked stocks in the bio pharma sector include Actelion Ltd (ALIOF) and Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. (ACOR). While Actelion holds a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Acorda carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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