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Liver Cancers Rising - Stocks to Watch

HENDERSON, NV / ACCESSWIRE / October 5, 2018 / Liver cancer incidence has more than tripled since 1980. Liver cancer death rates have increased by almost 3% per year since 2000. More than 700,000 people are diagnosed with liver cancer each year throughout the world. Liver cancer is also a leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide, accounting for more than 600,000 deaths each year.

Several companies are working on treatments for this disease, and we've highlighted them below. One in particular has caught our eye. Delcath Systems, Inc. (DCTH) a biotech company with an impressive treatment for cancers of the liver.

The company has been diligently enrolling a global Phase 3 FOCUS clinical trial for Patients with Hepatic Dominant Ocular Melanoma (OM) and has initiated a Registration trial called The ALIGN Trial for intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC).

It is rare to find a biotech this far along their trial phases without much fanfare.

Stocks fighting liver cancers include: Delcath Systems, Inc. (DCTH), Enanta Pharmaceuticals (ENTA), Viking Therapeutics, Inc. (VKTX), Merck & Co, Inc. (MRK), and Exelixis, Inc. (EXEL).

Delcath Systems, Inc. (DCTH)

Market Cap: $1.95M Share Price: $2.10

Delcath Systems, Inc. (DCTH) was in the news recently announcing data from a study conducted in Germany of the use of the Delcath Hepatic CHEMOSAT® Delivery System to treat patients with metastatic ocular melanoma with liver metastases, was presented as a poster at the Cardiovascular and Interventional Radiology Society of Europe (CIRSE) annual meeting.

Commenting on the study, Jennifer K. Simpson, PhD, MSN, CRNP, President & CEO of Delcath Systems, said, "Though the cohort in this study was small, the results are consistent with the positive signals provided by other studies published or presented over the last year. The high objective response rate and disease control rate observed in this study is particularly encouraging, as these data points are now the primary and secondary endpoints, respectively, for our amended Registration trial in ocular melanoma liver metastases. As the study authors note, the role of secondary surgery following PHP treatment is currently unclear given the small sample size, but we believe points to the promise this therapy may have for appropriately selected patients."

The CIRSE 2018 annual meeting was held in Lisbon, Portugal September 22-25, 2018.

Enanta Pharmaceuticals (ENTA)

Market Cap: $1.55B Share Price: $80.35

For the three months ended June 30th, 2018 vs June 30th, 2017, Enanta Pharmaceuticals reported revenue of $57.26MM vs $7.51MM (up 662.38%) and analysts estimated basic earnings per share $1.05 vs -$0.44. For the twelve months ended September 30th, 2017 vs September 30th, 2016, Enanta Pharmaceuticals reported revenue of $102.81MM vs $88.27MM (up 16.48%) and analysts estimated basic earnings per share $0.93 vs $1.14 (down 18.42%). Analysts expect earnings to be released on November 19th, 2018. The report will be for the fiscal period ending September 30th, 2018. The reported EPS for the same quarter last year was $1.86. The estimated EPS forecast for the next fiscal year is $2.73 and is expected to report on November 19th, 2018.

Viking Therapeutics, Inc. (VKTX)

Market Cap: $1.07B Share Price: $15.34

Viking Therapeutics Inc. reported positive results in a mid-stage trial of a treatment for broken hips. The company said its Phase 2 trial of VK5211 in patients who recent suffered a hip fracture met its primary goal of showing statistically significant increases in lean body mass as compared with placebo. The trial also found increases in 6-minute walk distance, a greater than 20-meter improvement over placebo at the highest dose. In September, Viking posted positive results from a trial of a non-alcoholic fatty liver disease treatment, sending its stock up 87%.

Merck & Co, Inc. (MRK)

Market Cap: $191.26B Share Price: $71.90

Merck, known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, announced a new effort to support cities across the country to help women have a healthy pregnancy and safe childbirth. The "Safer Childbirth Cities" initiative is intended to reduce the number of maternal deaths and life-threatening childbirth events and narrow disparities in maternal health outcomes in the U.S. "Safer Childbirth Cities" is part of Merck for Mothers, Merck's global initiative to end preventable deaths of women from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth. Building on its earlier investments to reduce maternal mortality in the U.S., Merck for Mothers is committing an additional $10m to improve maternal health across the country.

Exelixis, Inc. (EXEL)

Market Cap: $5.28B Share Price: $17.73

Exelixis, Inc. announced that Michael M. Morrissey, Ph.D., the company's President and Chief Executive Officer, will provide an overview of the company at the Cantor Fitzgerald Global Healthcare Conference taking place October 1-3 in New York, NY. The Exelixis presentation is scheduled for 9:10 AM EDT / 6:10 AM PDT on Tuesday, October 2, 2018.

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