Three Cancer Plays For The Fourth Quarter Of 2016

Celldex Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLDX)

Moving on, let’s now look at Celldex Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLDX). The company is developing a drug called Glembatumumab vedotin, which is a fully-human monoclonal antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) that targets what’s called glycoprotein NMB (gpNMB). The mechanism of action for this drug is relatively complex, but to simplify, it’s an antibody that targets the aforementioned protein, linked to a toxic component called monomethyl auristatin E (MMAE). The antibody targets the glycoprotein, and transports the toxic components to cancerous cells. The MMAE gets released once the drug is in the cells, and kills them from the inside. This means that the treatment can be highly selective, and in turn, that it need not have the devastating safety profile of traditional cancer agents. Right now, it’s a melanoma target, and Celldex Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLDX) is set to present phase 2 data at the upcoming European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) meeting. This event is one of the hottest events on the biotech calendar, and the abstract from Celldex’s presentation should hit press early Wednesday morning. If the data is positive (and we expect it will be, since the company is presenting at ESMO) there should be some immediate upside value in it for Celldex and its holders.

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Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE)

While there is plenty of upside reward on offer for the two aforementioned companies if the catalysts run in their favor, we are going to close out this list with a slightly less risky opportunity rooted in big Pharma. Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) just closed out on its acquisition of Medivation. The latter has developed a prostate cancer drug called Xtandi, which is currently approved for treating patients with prostate cancer that had previously undergone chemotherapy. Earlier this year, however, the FDA accepted a supplemental new drug application that compiles data showing Xtandi to be safe and effective in patients that have yet to receive chemotherapy.

The PDUFA for the application is October 22, 2016, and an agency green light would immediately serve up some upside for Pfizer based on the expanded potential market. The drug does a little over $300 million in sales in the US quarterly, but this will dramatically increase if Pfizer gets the go ahead to market to chemo-naive patients.

The company has taken some flak of late based on markets perceiving a potential over-valuation in the $14 million deal that saw it pick up Medivation and, by proxy, Xtandi. An FDA nod for the expansion would validate the price paid, to some degree, and that makes it an important event for  Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE).

There’s not as much upside on offer here as there is for the Cellldex and DelMar, but the depth of Pfizer’s operations limits the downside somewhat, making it an attractive opportunity for a risk mitigated event play.

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Note: This article is written by Mark Collins and was originally published at Market Exclusive.