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After the impressive tumor-shrinking data shown by Amgen (AMGN) from its KRAS-targeted cancer drug at the recently completed ASCO meeting, attention — and pressure — now shift to Mirati Therapeutics (MRTX) and its competing KRAS blocker.

Mirati is administering its drug called MRTX849 to patients with solid tumors right now. The first data reveal from the early-stage clinical trial is coming later this year. Mirati isn’t being more precise on timing, but investor expectations are running high, which means this trial readout is now shaping up to be one of the most important stock-moving catalysts remaining on the 2019 biotech calendar.


The approval of a KRAS-blocking drug is still years away, but Amgen has set the efficacy bar, for now: a 50% partial response rate in 10 patients with lung cancer tumors containing a mutation called KRAS G512C. There were no confirmed responses in a separate group of colon cancer patients. Can Mirati’s MRTX849 match or exceed this result?

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