5 Top Genetics News Stories of 2018

- December 26th, 2018

What caught the attention of readers in the genetics market this year? We’ve compiled a list of our top genetics news stories of 2018.

Genetics had another year full of crucial developments and approvals in 2018, making it a market for investors to follow closely.

With the year wrapping up, the Investing News Network brings investors a look at our five top genetics news stories, according to our readers.

Investors looking to catch up on what made news last year can also check out our five top genetics news stories from 2017.

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1. Myriad Stock Rises with FDA Approval

Myriad Genetic Laboratories (NASDAQ:MYGN) made genetics news in January by obtaining approval for its treatment for breast cancer with inherited genetic mutation. The treatment was the first of its kind to be confirmed by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

“This class of drugs has been used to treat advanced, BRCA-mutated ovarian cancer and has now shown efficacy in treating certain types of BRCA-mutated breast cancer,” said Dr. Richard Pazdur, director of the FDA’s Oncology Center of Excellence.

“This approval demonstrates the current paradigm of developing drugs that target the underlying genetic causes of a cancer, often across cancer types,” he added.

2. Is This the Next Botox? Evolus’ Phase 3 Study Meets Primary Endpoints

In April, Evolus (NASDAQ:EOLS) announced that a study for its Botox competitor had mets its primary endpoints. “Based on these findings, we believe that prabotulinumtoxinA represents a compelling and innovative option for the aesthetic treatment of glabellar lines,” commented Dr. Patricia Ogilvie, principal investigator of the study.

Evolus’ trial consisted of a 150-day multicenter, randomized, double-blind, active and placebo-controlled single-dose study with prabotulinumtoxinA and onabotulinumtoxinA.

3. Axovant Doses First Patient in Parkinson’s Trial

Axovant Sciences (NASDAQ:AXON) told investors in October that it had dosed the first patient for its Phase 1/2 study for a gene therapy looking to treat Parkinson’s disease.

“This marks the first of our gene therapy programs to enter the clinic, and our focus now is on rapid execution of the clinical study,” said Dr. Pavan Cheruvu, CEO of Axovant.

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Dr. Stéphane Palfi, the coordinating investigator for the study, said current therapies for Parkinson’s disease lead to “debilitating adverse events and unpredictable therapeutic effects over time.”

4. ImmunoCellular Therapeutics Achieves Key Genetic Milestone in Research

ImmunoCellular Therapeutics (NYSE:IMUC) announced a new crucial development in its Stem-to-T-Cell approach in April, moving closer to starting preclinical tests.

“We believe that our Stem-to-T-Cell program is potentially a game-changing treatment for cancer, and could be effective in treating many types of cancers,” noted Dr. Steven Swanson, the company’s senior vice president of research.

As part of this update, Dr. Anthony Gringeri, president and CEO of ImmunoCellular, said the company was looking at a potential collaboration for clinical programs and other partnerships in the space.

5. Ophthotech’s Share Price Increases on New Collaboration

Shares of Ophthotech (NASDAQ:OPHT) rose in June thanks to a new global licensing agreement with the University of Florida Research Foundation and the University of Pennsylvania.

The parties agreed to investigate and develop a novel adeno-associated virus gene therapy product to treat rhodopsin-mediated autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. Ophthotech estimates that the ailment affects approximately 11,000 patients in the US and in the five major European markets.

“Collaborating with the eminent scientists at the University of Florida and the University of Pennsylvania reinforces Ophthotech’s commitment to build a gene therapy pipeline for treatment of retinal diseases based on cutting edge technology,” said Dr. Kourous Rezaei, chief medical officer.

Don’t forget to follow us @INN_LifeScience for real-time news updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Bryan Mc Govern, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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