Leukemia Drug Under Investigation

A class action lawsuit is in the process of being filed in the United States District Court against ARIAD Pharmaceuticals. This lawsuit is on behalf of anyone who has purchased a particular leukemia drug from ARIAD, from the time period of December 12, 2011 to October 8, 2013.

ARIAD is an oncology firm that specializes in the discovery of drugs to help deal with aggressive cancers. They discover, develop, and mass produce small-molecule drugs that will help in the fight against cancer. One of their cancer drugs is Iclusig(TM), which treats adults who have various forms of leukemia. The drug is particularly targeted to patients whose leukemia is resistant to tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) therapy.

ARIAD announced on October 9, 2013, that its drug had been placed on hold by the United States Food and Drug administration (FDA). This applied to any new patients that had received the drug and to people who had taken part in clinical trials. It seems that various side effects of the drug were discovered after approval, with some being serious enough for the FDA to place Iclusig distribution on hold.

Shares of the company suffered when the news was broken and have dropped nearly 66%, or $11.31, since the announcement.

The FDA said that anyone who had come in contact with the drug should be considered at risk. Doctors were encouraged to contact patients who had taken the drug and help them identify whether any side effects have been apparent.

The company says Iclusig will remain on the market, and it encourages investors to remain patient. ARIAD’s investment banking partner, RBC, believes the volatility in share price is “inevitable” for this type of company.

Sources:
http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20131019-901675.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-11/ariad-s-inclusig-being-investigated-by-u-s-regulators.html