Peregrine Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:PPHM), a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing therapeutics to stimulate the body’s immune system to fight cancer, today announced that it is discontinuing the company’s Phase III SUNRISE trial of bavituximab in patients with previously treated locally advanced or metastatic non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The decision to stop the trial was based on the recommendation of the study’s Independent Data Monitoring Committee (IDMC) following a pre-specified interim analysis performed after 33% of targeted overall events (patient deaths) in the study were reached. Results of the analysis demonstrated that the bavituximab plus docetaxel group did not show a sufficient improvement in overall survival as compared to the docetaxel group to warrant continuation of the study. The interim analysis showed that the bavituximab combination group is performing as expected according to the original trial assumptions in terms of overall survival, while the docetaxel group is dramatically outperforming overall survival expectations based on the original trial assumptions and as compared to recently published studies.

“Let me start by taking this opportunity to thank all of the patients, their families, and the physicians who participated in the SUNRISE trial. While we are deeply disappointed by this early outcome from the SUNRISE trial, we plan to take a deliberate and detailed approach in reviewing and verifying all available data from the trial in order to understand what subgroups or other patient characteristics may have impacted the performance of the study. While we perform this analysis, we plan to put our other chemotherapy combination studies on hold until we have a clear understanding of the SUNRISE study results,” said Steven W. King, president and chief executive officer of Peregrine. “While this is an unexpected and disappointing setback for the bavituximab chemotherapy combination clinical program, we have not seen anything in this trial result that diminishes our enthusiasm for advancing our immuno-oncology (I-O) combination trials. The I-O combination studies are based on different mechanistic synergies that are clearly separate from the chemotherapy combination being evaluated in the SUNRISE study. In addition, it is important to note that in no way do these results have any impact on our contract manufacturing business conducted through our wholly owned subsidiary, Avid Bioservices. This business has shown consistent revenue growth and has been instrumental in maintaining a strong cash position and our plan is to continue growing this business.”

As of February 1, 2016, Avid Bioservices had a revenue backlog in excess of $58 million under committed contracts from existing clients. In addition, Peregrine had $67.5 million in cash and equivalents as of January 31, 2016.(Original Source)

Shares of Peregrine closed today at $1.07, up $0.02 or 1.90%. PPHM has a 1-year high of $1.66 and a 1-year low of $0.84. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $0.98 and its 200-day moving average is $1.11.

On the ratings front, Peregrine has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on January 12, FBR analyst Thomas Yip reiterated a Buy rating on PPHM, with a price target of $3.50, which implies an upside of 233.3% from current levels. Separately, on December 14, Noble Financial’s Rahul Jasuja maintained a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $5.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Thomas Yip and Rahul Jasuja have a total average return of -25.6% and -21.4% respectively. Yip has a success rate of 17.6% and is ranked #3584 out of 3666 analysts, while Jasuja has a success rate of 17.6% and is ranked #3445.

Peregrine Pharmaceuticals Inc is a biopharmaceutical company. It develops novel investigational products that help utilize the immune system to fight cancer, also known as immunotherapy.