Health Care Sector Update for 11/27/2018: VRTX,HALO,GTHX,ACAD

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Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ +0.60%

PFE +1.13%

ABT +1.09%

MRK +0.86%

AMGN +0.94%

Health care stocks were higher, including a 0.3% gain for the NYSE Health Care Index in recent trade. Shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 were up 0.7% as a group, although the Nasdaq Biotechnology index was 0.2% lower.

Among health care stocks moving on news:

(+) Vertex Pharmaceuticals ( VRTX ) rose 5% on Tuesday after saying a triple combination of its VX-659 drug candidate with two previously approved chemotherapy medications, tezacaftor and ivacaftor, produced statistically significant improvements in lung function in patients with cystic fibrosis during a pair of Phase III studies

In other sector news:

(-) ACADIA Pharmaceuticals ( ACAD ) was down 12% after announcing plans for a $200 million public offering of its common stock.

(-) Halozyme Therapeutics ( HALO ) declined 7.5% after the biotech company late Monday said the US Food and Drug Administration agreed to allow the company to change the primary endpoint of a late-stage clinical study of its PEGPH20 drug candidate as a first-line treatment in patients with metastatic pancreas cancer to a single primary endpoint of overall survival. Because of the change, a previously planned interim analysis is being scrapped, the company said.

(-) G1 Therapeutics ( GTHX ) dropped 16% this afternoon after late Monday saying there was no statistically significant difference in the overall response rate and progression-free survival for patients with small cell lung cancer treated with a combination of its trilaciclib drug candidate and traditional chemotherapy and patients treated with chemotherapy alone during Phase II testing. The overall response rate for patients in the trilaciclib arm of the trial was 56.0% compared with a 63.5% rate for the placebo group while the preliminary median rate of progression-free survival was 5.7 months for trilaciclib and 5.4 months for the placebo group.

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