Shares of Roche Holding have surged following the release of interim results from a late-stage clinical trial involving a combination of two of its drugs for lung cancer patients. The trial demonstrated a benefit for overall survival, leading to a 4.5% increase in Roche’s nonvoting shares.
Positive Interim Results
According to Roche, patients who received the immunotherapy tiragolumab in combination with the antibody Tecentriq showed an estimated median overall survival of 22.9 months. In comparison, patients who received Tecentriq alone had a median overall survival of 16.7 months. However, Roche advises caution as these results are still considered immature.
Potential Overall Survival Benefit
Citi analysts have stated that the ongoing phase 3 trial is on track to show a significant overall survival benefit. However, there are concerns regarding the data from the arm of the trial that received Tecentriq alone. Roche failed to replicate the median survival rate previously achieved in another trial with Tecentriq, which may limit its commercial impact.
Unintended Data Disclosure
Roche provided this progress update following an inadvertent disclosure of analysis data. The trial remains blinded to both patients and investigators and will continue until the final analysis for overall survival is completed. The company expects to release the final analysis in December.
It is worth highlighting that the initial goal of the lung-cancer trial was to achieve progression-free survival. Although this target was not met, the positive results for overall survival offer hope for lung cancer patients.