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Biotech Movers: Acadia Rockets on Trial News

Array also moves big again, along with Supernus and others


Here’s a look at recent major developments and share moves in biotech stocks:

Array Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ARRY): Array Pharmaceuticals got a nice bump Friday on positive news concerning selumetinib, its treatment for patients with a mutated form of non-small cell lung cancer. A study led by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute scientists and published in The Lancet Oncology showed a treatment using selumetinib alongside chemotherapy was more effective in treating NSCLC than chemotherapy alone. The study was sponsored by AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN), which owns the selumetinib license. ARRY shares finished up 9% on Friday and up 16% for the week, helping recover some ground lost after the company announced a secondary stock offering.

Supernus Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:SUPN): Speaking of secondary stock offerings, Supernus Pharmaceuticals watched its shares shed more than 10% near Thursday’s end and another 19% Friday amid its own offering, in which SUPN priced 6 million shares at $8 apiece — roughly 20% less than Thursday’s close. Supernus develops treatments for central nervous system disorders including epilepsy, ADHD and depression. SUPN shares still remain up nearly 40% on the year, primarily pushed by tentative FDA approval for epilepsy treatment Trokendi XR back in June.

Exelixis (NASDAQ:EXEL): Exelixis shareholders were selling the news last Friday, driving shares down almost 7% after the company received FDA clearance for its medullary thyroid cancer drug cabozantinib, which the company will brand Cometriq. EXEL also is testing the drug for a number of other conditions, such as multiple myeloma and several forms of cancer. The drug will compete against AstraZeneca’s Caprelsa.

Acadia Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ACAD): Acadia Pharmaceuticals more than doubled last week after a late-stage trial showed promise for its Parkinson’s disease treatment pimavanserin. Patients who used the drug showed “significant improvements in nighttime sleep, daytime wakefulness and caregiver burden.” ACAD shares jumped 136% Tuesday following the release of the study’s results; the company says it will continue trials before applying for FDA approval. Acadia finished the weak up 134%.

Idenix Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:IDIX): Idenix was helped upward last week after Deutsche Bank (NYSE:DB) initiated coverage of the stock with a “buy” rating, citing a target of $7 from its Tuesday price of around $4.50. The bank is optimistic about the company’s hepatitis C treatment, IDX-184.

Kyle Woodley is the Assistant Editor of As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Follow him on Twitter at @IPKyleWoodley.

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