Rucaparib, the ovarian cancer drug being developed by Clovis Oncology Inc (NASDAQ:CLVS) may not be as effective as AstraZeneca’s FDA-approved Lynparza treatment, according to data released by Clovis at the ESMO Oncology Conference in Copenhagen.
Unsurprisingly, shares in Clovis Oncology Inc (NASDAQ:CLVS) plunged 17.78% on Friday to $29.41 with 19.53 million shares changing hands.
AstraZeneca’s Lynparza became first of the new class of drug called PARP inhibitors to reach the market when it was accorded U.S. approval at the end of 2014.
Clovis Oncology Inc (NASDAQ:CLVS) continues to be a Buy at Suntrust
“These results demonstrate that rucaparib may represent an important option for women with multiply relapsed BRCA-mutated ovarian cancer based on its encouraging efficacy and tolerability,” said Rebecca S. Kristeleit, MD, PhD, The University College London, Cancer Institute, London, UK. “In my opinion, rucaparib has the hallmarks of an important new therapeutic option for ovarian cancer patients.”
However, the market chose instead to focus on rivals’ treatments and sold off Clovis.
The fall in Clovis shares presented a buying opportunity, according to Sun Trust analysts. They have a price target of $50 on Clovis.
Last month, analysts at Credit Suisse upgraded the stock from Neutral to Outperform and raised their price target from $19 to $41.
Meanwhile, on Saturday, another Clovis rival Tesaro revealed at the same conference that its experimental drug niraparib improved outcomes for all women with recurrent ovarian cancer in a clinical study, boosting prospects for the product.
Last November, shares of Clovis crashed after the FDA requested additional efficacy data on its lung cancer drug rociletinib.
After Friday’s selloff, shares of Clovis have slipped back to those levels.
They had been trending higher in recent weeks on rumors that Clovis was a ripe target for a takeover.
Medivation, which is also developing PARP inhibitors, was recently acquired by Pfizer for $14 billion.