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ImmunoGen Sinks After Stopping Lung Cancer Drug Trial

ImmunoGen Inc., a maker of oncology drugs, sank the most in more than three years after the company stopped the study of a medicine for lung cancer because it didn’t appear to work better than approved therapies.

ImmunoGen dropped 19 percent to $13.41 at the close in New York, the biggest decline since August 2010. The shares of the Waltham, Massachusetts-based company have gained 5.2 percent this year.

The trial, in the second phase of three generally required for marketing approval, was testing IMGN901 combined with two therapies, etoposide and carboplatin, against those drugs alone in patients with small-cell lung cancer. An independent monitoring committee determined IMGN901 was unlikely to show enough of a benefit to justify continuing the trial, ImmunoGen said today in a statement.

“Discontinuation of IMGN901 in small-cell lung cancer trials eviscerates their pipeline in the near term,” Joel Sendek, an analyst with Stifel Nicolaus & Co., wrote in a research note today. He reduced his recommendation on the stock to sell. “We no longer expect the company to move forward with IMGN901 in any other indications due to its lack of efficacy in this trial, pinning the hopes of the ImmunoGen pipeline on the earlier-stage compounds.”

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