Smaller caps trying for transformational data--TG Therapeutics, Karyopharm, Geron

ASH could prove quite meaningful for a few small-cap biotechs. A few have already gotten big bounces off of the ASH abstracts--but it remains to be seen if they can hold on to those gains.

TG Therapeutics ($TGTX) is up about 27% since the ASH abstracts came out; it will have an oral presentation on its PI3k delta inhibitor TGR-1202 in combination with its anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody ublituximab to treat heavily pretreated and high-risk chronic lymphocytic leukemia and B-cell lymphoma patients. According to the abstract, out of 15 patients in the trial, 6 had overall responses, while another 6 had partial responses.

TG Therapeutics is the only small-cap pick at ASH from Oliver Marti. He expects to see the efficacy and safety data hold up, which he thinks would make the biotech "a highly sought after asset."

Karyopharm ($KPTI) has added about 12% since ASH abstracts were revealed on optimism about its Selinexor, a first-in-class, oral, selective inhibitor of nuclear export. According to the abstract, in a study of 10 relapsed and refractory aggressive non-Hodgkin lymphoma patients, Selinexor had an overall response rate of 40% and a disease control rate of 80%.

Finally, the long-beleaguered Geron ($GERN) has broken out with a 35% uptick since the release of ASH abstracts. It was likely also helped along by a new partnership with Johnson & Johnson's ($JNJ) Janssen Pharmaceuticals worth up to $935 million to develop and commercialize its telomerase inhibitor imetelstat that was announced shortly after ASH abstracts came out.

It will have two oral presentations at the conference on imetelstat: one digging into safety and efficacy data from a myelofibrosis trial and the other on the effect of the candidate on thrombocythemia patients with various CALR mutations. The drug has failed previously in two solid tumor indications.

For more:
Geron shares rocket up after FDA takes the cuffs off its lead drug
Karyopharm taps CRO Veristat for cancer R&D
Geron's cancer drug shakes off one FDA hold but remains on pause
Clinipace cozies up to Karyopharm to get its pipeline moving

Smaller caps trying for transformational data--TG Therapeutics, Karyopharm, Geron

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