Galena Biopharma Inc. shares surged 20.8% in pre-market trade Monday after the company said an independent group of experts decided its breast cancer combination treatment in two mid-stage trials had no safety concerns and found neither to be futile. Galena is testing its NeuVax with chemotherapy drug trastuzumab in two clinical trials, one phase 2b and the other phase 2, to prevent recurrence of breast cancer. The Data Safety Monitoring Board's findings mean the trials can proceed, Galena's Executive Vice President Bijan Nejadnik said. The company ended a late-stage clinical trial of the same drug, Neuvax, last year on a different independent committee's recommendation and the committee's futility concerns. An interim efficacy analysis for the phase 2b trial of NeuVax and trastuzumab is expected near the end of this year, Galena said. Galena shares were priced at $1.20 as of Friday's close. Galena shares have dropped 68.4% over the last three months, compared with a 10.2% rise in the S&P 500 .
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