Shares of Oncothyreon Inc. rose Thursday after the company said its partner Merck KGaA started a late-stage study on Stimuvax as a potential lung cancer treatment.
The stock rose 33 cents, or 6.8 percent, to $5.20 in midday trading. Shares have traded between 76 cents and $7.77 over the last 52 weeks.
Seattle-based Oncothyreon said the study is expected to enroll 420 patients with inoperable, stage 3 lung cancer in China, Singapore, South Korea, and Taiwan. The key goal is overall patient survival.
Stimuvax is also currently being studied as a potential breast cancer treatment.
"The fact that Merck KGaA, one of the most experienced players in oncology, decided to invest in a third Phase III trial with Stimuvax, speaks to the German pharma giant's confidence about this program," said Rodman & Renshaw analyst Simos Simeonidis, in a note to investors Thursday.
He reaffirmed a "Market Outperform" rating for Oncothyreon with an $8 price target.