October 11, 2010 / 12:01 PM / 9 years ago

UPDATE 1-Oxigene reports positive data on cancer drug

* Says trial shows drug improves overall survival

* Side effects were transient hypertension, tumor pain

Oct 11 (Reuters) - Oxigene Inc OXGN.O said a mid/late stage trial showed its experimental drug Zybrestat, improved the overall survival of patients suffering from a type of thyroid cancer.

The median survival time for patients who received the drug in combination with chemotherapy was 5.1 months, compared with 4.1 months for patients who received chemotherapy alone.

The most common side effects reported with the drug and chemotherapy were neutropenia or low neutrophills counts, transient hypertension and tumor pain, the company said.

The trial showed 48 percent of patients treated with a combination of the drug and chemotherapy were alive at six months, compared with 37 of patients who were treated with chemotherapy alone.

Oxigene said it plans to discuss the results of the study with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to determine the next steps for the program and also with potential partners .

The drug, which is being developed for the treatment of anaplastic thyroid cancer — a type of aggressive cancer with poor prognosis — has an orphan drug designation from the U.S. health regulators.

Shares of the company, which have lost about 24 percent since the company reported second-quarter results on August 12, were up 14 percent at 32 cents Monday premarket trade. They had closed at 28 cents Friday on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Krishnakali Sengupta in Bangalore;Editing by Prem Udayabhanu)

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