Why Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Shares Slipped

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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of biotechnology company Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.  sank as low as 12% today after an ethics committee recommended that a key study assessing the use of its vosaroxin treatment for acute mylogenous leukemia be discontinued.

So what: The Data Monitoring and Ethics Committee recommended that the monotherapy vosaroxin study sponsored by Cardiff University be dropped early "as it did not meet the pre-specified criteria for advancement," raising a bit of concern among analysts over the drug's sales prospects. After the initial opening plunge, however, the stock trended up steadily throughout the day and closed Tuesday down just 4%, suggesting that Wall Street still has some belief in vosaroxin's broader potential.

Now what: Sunesis will continue to work with Cardiff University to understand why their outcomes differed from its own phase 2 REVEAL-1 trial. "We are confident in vosaroxin's broader potential, which we continue to explore through investigator-sponsored studies, such as the newly initiated MD Anderson Cancer Center trial in previously untreated AML and MDS," said CEO Daniel Swisher in a statement. So while the stock is certainly too speculative for average Fools, biotech traders might want to look into this small setback as a possible buy-in opportunity

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The article Why Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Shares Slipped originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara has no position in any stocks mentioned, and neither does The Motley Fool. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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