Shares of Wisconsin-based Exact Sciences jumped by 30 percent Wednesday after the company announced a marketing deal with pharmaceutical giant Pfizer for selling a cancer-screening test first developed by the Mayo Clinic.
Called Cologuard, the DNA screening test requires people to send stool samples in the mail for laboratory analysis.
A Mayo physician is a co-inventor of the Cologuard testing technology, which has been licensed to Exact Sciences from the clinic. Under that licensing agreement, Mayo Clinic and the physician share in equity and royalties, although the clinic hasn't released financial details.
"Pfizer will join Exact Sciences' sales representatives in reaching both physicians and health systems and will also actively participate in extending and deepening the Cologuard marketing campaign," the companies said in a statement.
Over a period of more than three years, Pfizer and Exact Sciences will spend up to $60 million each on shared marketing, according to a regulatory filing on Wednesday. For the Wisconsin company, the spending comes on top of baseline marketing expenses of $80 million per year.
Mayo officials said the Cologuard test, which was approved for use beginning in 2014, is a leading example of how medical advances from the clinic can be successfully commercialized.
Officials from Exact Sciences and Pfizer said they expect the product will help boost overall colon-cancer screening rates, where some patients balk at the prospect of undergoing colonoscopy. While outcomes can be improved with early detection, the companies say, fewer than two-thirds of people are current with recommended screening guidelines for colorectal cancer.
Under the agreement announced Wednesday, Pfizer will start co-promoting Cologuard in the fourth quarter of 2018. Pfizer and Exact Sciences say they will share profits.
Exact Sciences shares closed Wednesday at $65.32, up $15.27 for the day.