* Says cut allergy symptoms, improved quality of life
* Swiss group has cut jobs after another product failed
* Shares rise over 10 percent (Adds analyst’s comment, share price reaction)
ZURICH, July 31 (Reuters) - An allergy treatment from Swiss biotech company Cytos CYTN.S met its main target in a mid-stage trial, the group said on Friday, boosting its battered shares.
Patients taking CYT003-QbG10 for allergic rhinoconjunctivitis in the Phase IIb study had significantly lower allergy symptoms and reported a better quality of life than those taking a placebo, Cytos said in a statement.
“Today’s positive data increases the probability that Cytos’s vaccine technology works in a large-scale clinical setting (and) increases the possibility that the drug finds a partner that we think will be necessary to allow it to move into Phase III,” said Kepler Capital Markets analyst Mark Belsey.
Cytos shares were up nearly 14 percent at 20.40 Swiss francs by 0728 GMT, when the DJ Stoxx European health care sector index was down 0.55 percent and regaining some of the ground they had lost after a previous clinical failure for a high blood pressure vaccine.
The trial included nearly 300 patients and Cytos said the product should attract partnering interest from pharmaceutical companies once further clinical results in allergic asthma are reported in early 2010.
The Zurich-based group focuses on so-called immunodrugs, aimed at treating chronic diseases and addictions through vaccination, but has said it would cut about 40 percent of its workforce after vaccine CYT006-AngQb did not significantly reduce blood pressure in a mid-stage study. [ID:nLH230277]
It already has partnerships with drugmakers Novartis NOVN.VX and Pfizer PFE.N. (Reporting by Sam Cage; Editing by Greg Mahlich)
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