AstraZeneca share price underperforms as Imfinzi disappoints in trial

Oncology drug fails to improve overall survival compared with standard chemotherapy

AstraZeneca share price underperforms as Imfinzi disappoints in trial

Shares in AstraZeneca (LON:AZN) have fallen marginally into negative territory as the blue-chip group’s Imfinzi drug disappointed in a late-stage trial. The news marks another blow for the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker after the oncology treatment failed in the key MYSTIC study whose results were released last month.

As of 12:36 GMT, AstraZeneca’s share price had inched 0.30 percent lower at 5,937.00p. The shares are underperforming the broader UK market rally which has seen the benchmark FTSE 100 index gain 1.31 percent to 6,791.90 points so far today.

Imfinzi disappoints in EAGLE study

AstraZeneca announced in a statement today that the results from its Phase III EAGLE trial had showed that the pharmco’s Imfinzi drug had not met the primary endpoints of improving overall survival compared with standard-of-care chemotherapy in patients with recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer, who experienced disease progression following platinum-based chemotherapy. Imfinzi was tested both as monotherapy and in combination with tremelimumab, a type of antibody treatment, but neither met the trial goals.

“While these results are disappointing, we remain committed to evaluating the potential of Imfinzi and other innovative medicines for patients with head and neck cancer,” the company’s chief medical officer Sean Bohen commented in the statement, adding that AstraZeneca awaits the results of another late-stage trial of Imfinzi and tremelimumab in patients who have not received prior chemotherapy for recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer in the first half of next year.

Analysts on Anglo-Swedish group

Shore Capital and Liberum Capital both reaffirmed AstraZeneca as a ‘hold’ today, while Barclays remains ‘overweight’ on the blue-chip drugmaker. According to MarketBeat, the FTSE 100 group currently has a consensus ‘hold’ rating and an average price target of 5,927.44p.

As of 12:51 GMT, Friday, 07 December, AstraZeneca plc share price is 5,914.79p.

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