Dear Valued Visitor,

We have noticed that you are using an ad blocker software.

Although advertisements on the web pages may degrade your experience, our business certainly depends on them and we can only keep providing you high-quality research based articles as long as we can display ads on our pages.

To view this article, you can disable your ad blocker and refresh this page or simply login.

We only allow registered users to use ad blockers. You can sign up for free by clicking here or you can login if you are already a member.

Dendreon Corporation (DNDN) Searching For A Rebound

“We believe that the fourth quarter may be our strongest quarter of the year,” said John Johnson, Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN)‘s  chairman, CEO, and president.

Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN)Where have we heard the fourth-quarter-comeback plan before? Oh yes, from Johnson’s predecessor who issued 2011 revenue guidance of $350 million to $400 million, with half of that coming in the fourth quarter. The plan didn’t go so well.

Sales of Provenge, Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN)’s prostate cancer treatment, fell from $81.6 million in the fourth quarter to $67.6 million in the first quarter of the year. The company had warned that there would be some headwinds in the first quarter, but investors weren’t expecting such gale force winds.

The largest impact to sales came from competition from new prostate cancer drugs Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)‘s Zytiga and Astellas Pharma Inc and Medivation Inc (NASDAQ:MDVN)‘s Xtandi. In December, Zytiga was approved for use in patients who haven’t received chemotherapy, the same patients that Provenge is approved to treat. Xtandi is still only approved as a second-line treatment after chemotherapy, but is listed as an earlier treatment in the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Compendium, the oncologist’s bible for off-label treatment that insurers often use to make coverage decisions.

Both drugs are taken orally, while Provenge has a complex process of taking immune cells from a patient, training them to attack the cancer, and then infusing them back into the patient. For smaller offices, it’s much easier to hand patients a prescription than to arrange the Provenge process for three separate treatments. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) and Astellas Pharma Inc and Medivation Inc (NASDAQ:MDVN) are also much larger and can therefore focus on those smaller treatment centers better than Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN).

In addition to drawing away patients, Zytiga and Xtandi are also siphoning off resources from foundations that offer co-pay assistance, making it harder for patients to get help paying for Provenge.

Management said it’s hoping to grow Provenge sales year over year and guided for second-quarter sales in the mid-$70 million range. To hit that 2013 goal, it’ll need to have sales of about $180 million in the second half of the year. That’s not as bad as predicting that level of sales in a single quarter like it did in 2011, but it’s still a pretty tall order.

Call me skeptical.

The article This Biotech Is Looking for a Fourth-Quarter Comeback originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Brian Orelli has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Johnson & Johnson. The Motley Fool owns shares of Dendreon and Johnson & Johnson.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Loading Comments...