ImClone goes long on Erbitux

Is all the Erbitux hype warranted? Some industry analysts say yes, others say they're skeptical. The right answer carries big stakes, because ImClone Systems has all its short-term eggs in that cancer drug's basket.

You'll recall that ImClone is aiming to expand the use of Erbitux beyond its current indications for colorectal cancer and head and neck cancers. The company completed a lung cancer study last year, but so far it's been coy about the results, saying only that they have "positive news." The data is scheduled for release at the June meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncologists; analysts say the company's recent surge on the stock market has been stoked by anticipation of good news. At least one analyst predicts that Erbitux will hit $4 billion in sales eventually. But others say the company has raised questions by holding back details of that lung cancer study.

Now, Erbitux is ImClone's only product, and it's years away from launching any of its late-stage candidates. Some say that pipeline is strong. For confirmation of that, and for any solid info on the forthcoming data, we'll all have to wait.

- read the report from CNN Money

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