Antigenics shares plunge on Oncophage rejection

Antigenics (AGEN) has a fresh round of sour news to report this morning, announcing that European regulators will soon formally reject its kidney cancer vaccine Oncophage.  The biotech said that it was told of the decision verbally. And discouraged investors quickly bailed on the company's stock, which plunged 43 percent.

Antigenics had held out hopes for Oncophage despite two pivotal trial failures for kidney cancer and skin cancer. TheStreet's acerbic Adam Feuerstein says that Antigenics' only positive data comes from a retrospective data analysis. Antigenics has already said that it can't seek an FDA approval given the late-stage setbacks, but it hasn't given up hope. "With the considerable support of the urology and oncology communities, we will continue to evaluate our options for making Oncophage available to kidney cancer patients in the EU," said Garo Armen, chairman and CEO of Antigenics.

The developer does have an approval for Russia, but Feuerstein is quick to pour cold water on that venture as well. The company has said that it is still negotiating a reimbursement deal and has no set timeline on when it expects to see any revenue from the therapy.

- check out the release
- here's Feuerstein's piece in TheStreet