Seattle-based biotech company Juno Therapeutics beat analyst expectations in its second quarter revenue Thursday, reporting $21.3 million in revenue for the quarter compared to an analyst estimate of $15.82 million.
But it narrowly missed expectations on per-share loss, posting a loss of $0.74 per share, slightly worse than the expected loss of $0.72. The mixed bag follows a turbulent period for the company after it pulled its most advanced drug candidate. Juno has since revved up R&D efforts to push several other drug candidates into clinical trials, increasing losses.
The company is developing CAR T immunotherapy treatments for cancer, cutting-edge medical science that uses genetically altered immune cells to kill cancer. Last month, biotech giant Novartis passed the first FDA hurdle to get its own CAR T immunotherapy approved on the market, which would be a first for the treatment.
Thursday, Juno highlighted positive results in early trials of its flagship drug, JCAR017, a treatment for those with advanced leukemia who haven’t responded to current treatment options. Half of the patients in a small clinical trial went into remission, no small task for such a sick patient group.
“It has been a historic last several months for the CAR T field, highlighting the potential of these therapies for patients. Juno is well-positioned to make a major impact, particularly with the potential best-in-class profile emerging for JCAR017,” Juno CEO Hans Bishop said in a press release. “We look forward to starting the pivotal cohort for JCAR017 this quarter as well as expanding the use of this drug into broader populations over the coming year.”