* Says developing registration strategies for picoplatin
* Says exploring strategic alternatives to support
* Existing cash enough to fund ops at least through 2010
* Q1 loss/shr $0.29 vs est loss/shr $0.23
* Shares close up 22 pct
(Adds analyst comments)
May 10 Poniard Pharmaceuticals Inc PARD.O
said it would resume efforts to gain regulatory approval of its
cancer drug, picoplatin, sending its shares up 22 percent.
The company, which also posted a wider-than-expected
quarterly loss on Monday, had in March said it would suspend
efforts to get approval for the drug after it failed to show
significant overall survival benefit in late-stage studies in
small-cell lung-cancer. [ID:nSGE62N0CD]
Funding for further development of picoplatin, which has
finished mid-stage studies in prostate cancer and colorectal
cancer, has been dependant on a partner.
Poniard said it was continuing to explore strategic
alternatives to support the picoplatin program in lung,
colorectal, prostate and ovarian cancers.
Rodman & Renshaw analyst Simos Simeonidis said going
forward, there could still be some positive upside for the
stock, as the picoplatin program could interest potential
"Although they are in a difficult position right now, I
think they will be able to find a partner willing to invest in
some late-stage trial, might not immediately, but by later part
of this year," Simeonidis added.
Poniard said its existing cash and investment securities,
which totaled $38.3 million at March end, would provide
adequate resources to fund operations at least through the end
For its first quarter, the company reported a net loss of
$11.9 million, or 29 cents a share, compared with a net loss of
$13.0 million, or 38 cents a share, in the year ago quarter.
Analysts on average had expected the company to post a loss
of 23 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Shares of the company closed up 22 percent at $1.27 Monday
(Reporting by Krishnakali Sengupta in Bangalore; Editing by