Every year the oncology world flocks to the annual scientific meeting of ASCO in Chicago to hear about the latest advances, and setbacks, from just about every company that is trying to make an impression in the cancer field. And we saw a number of big winners and losers over the weekend.
One of the biggest trends in the industry today is a continuing focus on checkpoint inhibitors. Now that the two pioneers (the PD-1 drugs Opdivo and Keytruda) are on the market, the big early news over the weekend centered on the limitations of these drugs among patients with a low expression of PD-L1. That insight damaged Bristol-Myers ($BMY) on Friday, but may wind up helping developers like Genentech, where a big team under Dan Chen is looking to vault ahead with a drug--he newly named atezo--that will be expressly used among patients who share a promising profile for response.
Celldex ($CLDX), meanwhile, came through with positive data for their brain cancer vaccine, a rare event in that field. And CTI ($CTIC) earned some redemption for promising data for a myelofibrosis drug. Clovis ($CLVS), which is in a tight development race with AstraZeneca on two fronts, had some explaining to do about its lead drug, even as it posted promising data on its second pipeline program for rucaparib.
We've got all that news and more in our annual ASCO weekend special report below. And we'll be continuing to post stories on ASCO throughout the day. -- John Carroll | Follow me on Twitter @JohnCFierce