Here’s Why Oragenics (OGEN) Shares Skyrocketed 85% Today

Binary events in biotech can be key determinants of stock price performance. These can be especially relevant to investors seeking opportunity that is less correlated to the broader market. Case in point: Oragenics (NYSEAMERICAN:OGEN), whose shares are jumping nearly 85% on Wednesday in response to the announcement of positive  interim safety analysis data from the company’s Phase 2 clinical trial of AG013 for the treatment of oral mucositis (OM).

Following review of the data by an independent Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB), it was concluded that the clinical trial can proceed with no changes to the study. The data analysis indicated that the distribution of adverse events were similar between AG013 and placebo. The serious adverse events reported were consistent with those commonly reported in a head and neck cancer population receiving traditional chemoradiation therapy treatments and included fevers, neutropenia, anemia, nausea and vomiting, infections and oral (mouth and throat) pain. There were no reports of bacteremia or sepsis. Of patients that discontinued participation in the clinical study, 4 patients experienced adverse events, including 3 patients who developed nausea and vomiting, 2 patients that were non-compliant with the study procedures and 3 patients developed severe OM.

“We are pleased with the conclusions reached by the DSMB. Of particular interest was the low number of study discontinuations due to the development of severe OM which resulted in patients seeking alternative treatments for their condition. We are also pleased to note that we believe the overall incidence of severe OM is less than would be anticipated in the general population. While recognizing the preliminary nature of this phase of the study, such a finding might well suggest mitigation of severe OM by AG013,” said Alan Joslyn, Oragenics’ President and Chief Executive Officer. “Given the clearance by the DSMB, we will proceed with patient enrollment for our AGO13 clinical trial, which we hope to accelerate by the addition of clinical sites in the U.S. and Europe. We expect to report top-line results of the completed phase 2 trial in late 2019.”

“The DSMB’s findings are completely in line with the safety and tolerability signals observed in patients receiving induction chemotherapy for head and neck cancer and reported in the Phase 1b trial and pave the way for completion of a robust Phase 2,” said Dr. Stephen Sonis, an expert in the field and advisor to Oragenics. “The unique delivery platform by which AG013 delivers hTTF1 represents an innovative approach with the potential to favorably impact the incidence and course of this devastating side effect of radiation therapy for patients being treated for head and neck cancer.”

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