What happened

This week has been a tough one for stocks, but it's been especially tough for specialty biotech Clovis Oncology (CLVS). Following the release of its first-quarter results and operational update, the company's shares traded down sharply, and they have yet to recover. According to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence, as of Thursday night they had fallen almost 27% week to date.

So what

Clovis published those results Wednesday morning and while they couldn't be called disastrous, they weren't what shareholders were yearning for. The inaugural quarter of the year saw the company take in just over $34.2 million on the top line.

Medical professional using a monitor located in a clinical facility.

Image source: Getty Images.

That was comprised entirely of net product revenue for its Rubraca, which holds Food and Drug Administration approval for maintenance treatment of ovarian, fallopian tube, and primary peritoneal cancer. That number was down from first-quarter 2021's tally of just over $38 million.

At least the situation improved somewhat on the bottom line. For the period, the biotech posted a net loss just short of $60.2 million ($0.44 per share), which bettered the year-ago deficit of over $66 million.

Both numbers didn't quite meet analyst expectations. Those prognosticators were collectively modeling nearly $37 million on the top line, and $0.43 in per-share net loss.

Now what

As for the operational update, Clovis said that Rubraca achieved its primary endpoint of "significantly improved investigator-assessed progression-free survival (PFS) compared with placebo," in a clinical trial as a monotherapy in first-line ovarian cancer treatment.

The company added that it's expecting two additional top-line phase 3 trial readouts within the next year "with potential to address ovarian and prostate cancer patient populations."

Finally, Clovis said that next month at an industry conference, it will present initial phase 1 clinical data for its FAP-2286. This is an investigational drug that targets fibroblast activation protein (FAP).

While the company's recent news wasn't necessarily discouraging, it did not provide sufficient reason for optimism. The company remains dependent on sales of Rubraca, which isn't the only drug of its type currently on the market.