Merck 1Q net quadruples as cancer drug, vaccine sales soar | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


Merck 1Q net quadruples as cancer drug, vaccine sales soar

Surging sales of vaccines and the cancer immunotherapy drug Keytruda led to a quadrupling of profit at Merck during the first quarter as it blew past Wall Street expectations.

Sales of Keytruda jumped 55% to $2.27 billion, about one-quarter of total revenue. During the quarter, the injected biologic drug racked up U.S. approvals as an initial treatment for advanced kidney cancer and advanced nonsmall-cell lung cancer and for treating melanoma after surgery.

Keytruda is now approved for nearly 20 cancer types and patient groups here, and recently got approval for treating lung cancer patients in China, a huge market where Merck is ahead of competitors. Merck research head Roger Perlmutter told analysts on a conference call that the company just listed its 1,000th Keytruda patient study —either ongoing or completed — on the U.S. clinical trials registry site.

Comments

SHARE THIS ARTICLE WITH YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA