On Monday, Vertex Pharmaceuticals
Investors won't have to wait long for new study data from Vertex. The company has scheduled a presentation and conference call tomorrow morning, at the bright and (very) early hour of 5 a.m. ET. If you'd rather sleep in, make sure to catch a replay, since Vertex will be presenting a more complete set of data on hepatitis C treatment telaprevir. These particular statistics involve patients who failed to respond to standard-of-care hepatitis C treatments in previous studies.
Vertex already gave us a glimpse of the data from this open-label study, dubbed VX06-950-107, when it released an abstract earlier this month. These results could provide a glimpse at the conclusions of Vertex's similar but larger PROVE-3 phase 2 clinical trial. Vertex's other phase 2 studies, PROVE-1 and PROVE-2, tested telaprevir in newly diagnosed chronic hepatitis C patients. But the PROVE-3 study is testing telaprevir in patients who weren't cured of their hepatitis C virus after taking other drugs, such as Schering-Plough's
Whatever the VX06-950-107 results suggest tomorrow, we won't have to wait long for interim PROVE-3 results from Vertex; the first data's expected next month. PROVE-3 looks like Vertex's only shot at getting telaprevir on the U.S. or EU markets before 2011. If the PROVE-3 data is good enough, Vertex and partner Johnson & Johnson
The other highlights of Vertex's Monday conference call were the company's mentions that it's "pursuing a number of potential collaborations and deals with companies that have future complementary therapies to telaprevir," and that work on developing telaprevir twice-a-day dosing was going well. Both of these points are significant, since they're currently touted as key advantages of rivals' similar drugs. Adding them would narrow the gap between telaprevir and its virus-fighting competitors.
Johnson & Johnson is an active Income Investor pick.