Astex reports positive PhII results for leukemia drug

Dublin, CA-based Astex Pharmacueticals ($ASTX) revealed Wednesday morning that its small molecule agent SGI-110 showed "clear activity" in a Phase II trial of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndrome. The drug is given as either a 60 mg or 90 mg dose daily for 5 days in a 28-day course. The primary endpoint is overall remission rate. Out of 67 patients, there was a 25% complete remission rate--8 remissions occurring in relapsed/refractory AML and another 9 remissions in treatment-naive elderly AML. At press time, shares of Astex were up 20% to $6.61 on the news. Release

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