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Agios to Present Data on AG-120 in November, Shares Rises

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Shares of Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (AGIO) jumped 19.3% to $63.76 on the announcement that it will present data from a phase I study on AG-120 at the 26th EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics earlier than expected, in November this year. The stock also touched a 52-week high of $66.98 during the trading session on Sep 26.

The candidate is being developed for the treatment of blood cancer. We note that company had said that it expects to present data from the phase I study on AG-120 at medical conferences next year on its second-quarter conference call.

The company is currently running two phase I studies on AG-120 in patients suffering from IDH1-mutant hematologic malignancies and IDH1-mutant advanced solid tumors. Both studies are evaluating the safety and tolerability of the candidate. We expect investor focus to stay on the phase I study results.

Agios is developing AG-120 under a collaboration agreement with Celgene Corporation (CELG). Agios is also developing AG-221 under this agreement with Celgene. Last month, the FDA granted Fast Track designation to AG-221 for the treatment of patients suffering from acute myelogenous leukemia (AML.V) harboring an isocitrate dehydrogenase-2 (IDH2) mutation.

We are encouraged by Agios’ blood cancer candidates. Celgene, a key player in the blood cancer market with products like Revlimid and Pomalyst, will be of great advantage to Agios. Celgene’s expertize in the treatment of blood cancer will help in the development process of these candidates.

Agios currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Investors looking for better-ranked stocks in the healthcare sector may consider companies like Gilead Sciences (GILD) and Medivation (MDVN). Both stocks carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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