Shares of microcap oncology company Tempest Therapeutics Inc. (TPST) plunged more than 50% on Thursday, following a remarkable 40-fold gain in the previous day. The surge in trading prompted a temporary halt due to volatility.
This significant increase in stock value was triggered by the release of new study results for Tempest’s investigational treatment, TPST-1120, for liver cancer. Additionally, the company announced a limited-duration stockholder-rights plan, referred to as a “poison pill,” which is designed to benefit long-term shareholders.
Tempest revealed that when TPST-1120 is combined with the Roche Holding AG monoclonal antibodies Tecentriq and Avastin, it demonstrates clinical superiority in treating aggressive liver cancer known as unresectable or metastatic hepatocellular carcinoma. Considering the high mortality rates associated with this type of cancer, Tempest’s President and CEO, Stephen Brady, expressed enthusiasm about advancing the development of TPST-1120.
To control costs, Tempest is actively seeking a partner as it prepares to move the drug into a larger pivotal study. Brady emphasized that conducting the study alone would exceed $100 million, including expenses for companion drugs.
While Tempest shares have seen a year-to-date increase of 277%, the broader market represented by the S&P 500 has gained 14.2%.