Merrimack Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:MACK) announced a newly presented analysis of the Phase 3 NAPOLI-1 data shows patients treated with ONIVYDE® (irinotecan liposome injection), also known as “nal-IRI,” in combination with fluorouracil (5-FU) and leucovorin, maintain similar baseline quality of life at 12 weeks despite the addition of a second chemotherapeutic agent when compared to 5-FU and leucovorin alone. These findings were presented in an oral session by Dr. Richard Hubner, an investigator on the NAPOLI-1 trial and a Consultant Medical Oncologist at Christie NHS Foundation Trust, at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 18th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer in Barcelona, Spain.

Previously reported Phase 3 NAPOLI-1 data demonstrate that the ONIVYDE combination regimen significantly improves overall survival and progression-free survival when compared to 5-FU and leucovorin alone1. ONIVYDE in combination with 5-FU and leucovorin was approved by theU.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in October 2015 for the treatment of patients with metastatic adenocarcinoma of the pancreas whose disease progressed after gemcitabine-based therapy. It is the first and only FDA-approved therapy in this setting and was recently designated category 1 status by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

“This quality of life analysis of the NAPOLI-1 data underscores the significant clinical benefit the ONIVYDE regimen provides to a patient population with few treatment options,” said Dr. Richard Hubner, investigator on the NAPOLI-1 trial and Consultant Medical Oncologist at Christie NHS Foundation Trust. “Fluorouracil and leucovorin is recognized as a well-tolerated therapy for metastatic pancreatic cancer patients. The addition of ONIVYDE, a second chemotherapeutic agent, to this treatment regimen demonstrated significant improvement in median overall survival, progression-free survival and overall response rate2 with little or no impact on baseline quality of life at 12 weeks, as shown in this analysis. This further supports the growing recognition that the ONIVYDE combination regimen is a clinically beneficial treatment option for metastatic pancreatic cancer patients who have progressed on gemcitabine-based therapy.” (Original Source)

Shares of Merrimack Pharmaceuticals Inc. closed yesterday at $5.62, up $0.09 or 1.63%. MACK has a 1-year high of $12.43 and a 1-year low of $5.02. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $6.40 and its 200-day moving average is $6.91.

On the ratings front, Merrimack Pharmaceuticals has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on May 26, Robert W. Baird analyst Michael Ulz initiated coverage with a Hold rating on MACK and a price target of $8, which represents a potential upside of 42.3% from where the stock is currently trading. Separately, on May 20, Brean Murray Carret’s Jonathan Aschoff reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $16.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Michael Ulz and Jonathan Aschoff have a total average return of -24.0% and -13.3% respectively. Ulz has a success rate of 0.0% and is ranked #3589 out of 3990 analysts, while Aschoff has a success rate of 30.9% and is ranked #3891.

Merrimack Pharmaceuticals, Inc. engages in discovering, developing and preparing to commercialize innovative medicines consisting of novel therapeutics paired with diagnostics for the treatment of cancer. Its offers its first commercial product, Onivyde, which is a novel encapsulation of the marketed chemotherapy drug irinotecan in liposomal formulation. The company was founded by Anthony J. Sinskey, Gavin MacBeath and Ulrik B. Nielsen in 1993 and is headquartered in Cambridge, MA.