Pharmacyclics Inc.’s (NASDAQ:PCYC) cancer drug Imbruvica has brought glad tidings for the company. The efficacy and performance of the drug was judged by an independent panel and the report which they put forth was quite satisfactory. If the drug is used in combination with two other drugs, which are bendamustine and rituximab, then it has proven to battle two similar kinds of cancer quite effectively.
This assessment was based on positive and significant results attained by the use of Imbruvica in conjugation with bendamustine and rituximab.
This news is not only pleasant for the drug’s manufacture company, but it also holds a significant position for AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) as well. This latter company went through a merger and acquired Pharmacyclics Inc.(NASDAQ:PCYC) for approximately $21 billion. Rather the pivotal factor in play behind this acquisition was the very potential of Imbruvica. Imbruvica holds a great promise of bringing a significant change to cancer treatment; and owing to this reason, a conflict was observed amongst AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), and Novartis AG (ADR) (NYSE:NVS); with each company, struggling hard for the acquisition of Pharmacyclics Inc.(NASDAQ:PCYC). This acquisition is going to mean a lot for AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV). Firstly the company’s reliance on its drug Humira would be decreased to a great extent. It is interesting to note over here, that previously Humira made up almost 60% of the company’s total sales. Secondly, this acquisition would also pave way for AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) to enter the blood-cancer market which has a multi-billion dollar potential in it.
The basic objective of the trial in which Imbruvica was deployed, was to improve the progression-free survival percentage of patients suffering from blood cancer. The results delineated this fact that Imbruvica quite successfully managed to reach this end point.
This trial was carried out on a total of 578 patients. These subjects had been patients suffering from chronic lymphocytic leukemia. There was also a percentage of subjects suffering from small lymphocytic lymphoma. Another consideration in the choice of these patients was that they had previously been subjected to atleast one line of systemic therapy.
Danielle James, Pharmacyclics Inc.’s(NASDAQ:PCYC) head of oncology gave a statement regarding the result of this trial carried out on Imbruvica drug. In this statement he asserted that the results obtained so far had been quite positive and that they were still probing into various benefits of Imbruvica when used in conjugation with other drugs.
These results will then be submitted to regulatory authorities, so that the drug’s current label can be expanded to include further benefits of the drug, which are being explored presently.
Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) along with Pharmacyclics Inc.(NASDAQ:PCYC) manage the sales of Imbruvica. US Food and Drug Administration rewarded its approval to Imbruvica for the treatment of four types of blood cancer. It also included a very rare form of cancer which adversely affects the immune system of the body.
This popularity has naturally led analysts to form a high opinion regarding the drug’s sales. They expect that Imbruvica will soon be making sales of almost $1 billion; whilst by the year 2020, its sales might amount to $5.8 billion across the world.