Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Galena Biopharma (NASDAQ:GALE), a biopharmaceutical company primarily focused on developing therapies to treat cancer and cancer-associated pain, surged as much as 10% after reporting better-than-expected earnings results after the closing bell last night.

So what: For the quarter, Galena delivered $2.2 million in sales of breakthrough cancer pain medication Abstral, which was up from $1.3 million in the sequential fourth-quarter. Galena recorded no revenue in the year-ago quarter. Operating expenses, given Galena's push into later stage trials, jumped by 33% on the R&D front and nearly 350% from the perspective of selling, general and administrative expenses. However, a favorable change in warrant value resulted in a profit of $9.8 million compared to a loss of $5 million last year. The end result was a net loss of $2.5 million, or $0.02 per share, from $9.3 million, or $0.11 per share in the prior year period. Comparatively speaking, Wall Street was looking for a loss of $0.10 per share. Galena also issued Abstral revenue guidance of $11 million-$15 million for the year.

Now what: Overall this was a fairly positive report for Galena, although investors should take its earnings beat on the back of warrant revaluing with a grain of salt. Its phase 3 PRESENT trial for immunotherapy vaccine NeuVax is on pace to be fully enrolled by year's end, and Abstral is helping to partially counteract the company's negative cash flow. Make no mistake about it; Galena's future looks as if it'll live and die by the hands of NeuVax, so that's what shareholders should really be watching. However, today is all about higher Abstral sales and a favorable move in the valuation of its warrants.

Galena shares may have soared today, but they'll likely be hard-pressed to keep pace with this top stock over the long run
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Sean Williams has no material interest in any companies mentioned in this article. You can follow him on CAPS under the screen name TMFUltraLong, track every pick he makes under the screen name TrackUltraLong, and check him out on Twitter, where he goes by the handle @TMFUltraLong.

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