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Genentech 3rd-quarter profit jumps up for 21 percent

The world's second-largest biotechnology company, Genentech Inc.'s third-quarter profit rose 21 percent on a surge in sales of cancer drug Avastin and strong performance from its other cancer treatments.

The company earned $685 million (481.51 million EUR), or 64 cents per share, compared with profit of $568 million (399.27 million EUR), or 53 cents per share, during the year-ago period.

Excluding stock option costs and charges, the company said it earned 73 cents per share in the latest quarter.

Revenue rose to $2.91 billion (2.05 billion EUR) from $2.39 billion (1.68 billion EUR) a year ago.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial expected profit of 72 cents per share, excluding stock-option costs and charges, on revenue of $2.93 billion (2.06 billion EUR).

Sales of Avastin, which treats lung, breast and colon cancer, rose 37 percent to $597 million (419.65 million EUR), while sales of breast cancer drug Herceptin rose 6 percent to $320 million (224.94 million EUR).

Rituxan, which is approved to treat rheumatoid arthritis and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, brought in $572 million (402.08 million EUR) in sales, marking a 12 percent increase. Meanwhile, macular degeneration drug Lucentis, approved last June, had sales of $198 million (139.18 million EUR), marking a 29 percent jump.

The company reaffirmed is outlook for full-year profit of $2.85 (2 EUR) to $2.95 (2.07 EUR) per share, excluding charges. Wall Street is predicting earnings of $2.95 (2.07 EUR) per share.

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