Stocks & Shares Pharmaceuticals & Health

AstraZeneca heads south after disappointing MYSTIC trial results

Shares in AstraZeneca (LON:AZN) have lost ground in London in today’s session, as the company posted disappointing results from its key MYSTIC study. The setback comes after the highly-awaited oncology trial delivered disappointing initial results last year.

As of 10:25 GMT, AstraZeneca’s share price had given up 2.28 percent to 6,173.00p. The shares are underperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index having inched marginally into positive territory and currently standing 0.04 percent higher at 7,041.04 points.

Disappointing MYSTIC trial results

AstraZeneca announced in a statement this morning that the final overall survival results for its late-stage MYSTIC trial showed that the combination of its oncology drug Imfinzi and tremelimumab, a type of antibody treatment, did not meet the primary endpoints of improving overall survival compared to standard-of-care  chemotherapy in previously-untreated patients with Stage IV (metastatic) non-small cell lung cancer.

“We are disappointed that these results missed statistical significance,” the group’s chief medical officer Sean Bohen commented in the statement, adding, however, that the company remained ‘confident’ in Imfinzi as ‘the cornerstone’ of its immuno-oncology programme and continued to  evaluate its potential in ongoing non-small cell lung cancer trials, “including Imfinzi and Imfinzi plus tremelimumab in combination with chemotherapy”. The drug has already been approved for Stage III lung cancer in more than 40 countries.

The results mark a setback for AstraZeneca which has bet on oncology as one of its key therapy areas to propel sales growth.

Analysts on blue-chip pharmco

JPMorgan Chase & Co, which sees AstraZeneca as a ‘buy,’ set a price target of 6,900p on the shares today. According to MarketBeat, the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating and an average price target of 5,905.53p.

As of 10:41 GMT, Friday, 16 November, AstraZeneca plc share price is 6,146.00p.

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