Curis, Inc. (NASDAQ:CRIS), a biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative drug candidates for the treatment of human cancers, announced data presented from in vitro and in vivo studies for CUDC-427, an antagonist of inhibitor of apoptosis (IAP) proteins, at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) 2015 Annual Meeting. CUDC-427 is being studied in a Phase 1 trial in patients with advanced solid tumors or lymphoma. Curis’ collaborator, Aurigene Discovery Technologies Limited, also reported preclinical data on its interleukin-1 receptor association kinase-4 (IRAK-4) inhibitor program at AACR.

CUDC-427 presentations:

Curis scientists presented two CUDC-427 posters at AACR. The first poster, “Predictive biomarker signatures for IAP inhibitor CUDC-427,” discussed data from in vitro and in vivo studies that were conducted to identify predictive gene signatures that may be associated with drug response in ovarian and breast cancers. The drug response and genomic/expression profiles of 29 breast and ovarian patient-derived xenografts (PDX) were used to generate a set of gene signatures that will be further validated in additional PDX models and patient samples derived from ongoing clinical testing of CUDC-427.

The second poster, “IAP inhibitor CUDC-427 induces tumor regression or stasis in preclinical models of B-cell lymphoma,” reported data from in vitro and in vivo studies showing CUDC-427 anti-tumor activity in multiple hematologic cancer models, including diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Data from a panel of human hematologic cell lines showed that the DLBCL cell lines were most sensitive to CUDC-427 treatment in growth inhibition assays. The anti-tumor effect of CUDC-427 was further confirmed in in vivo studies where daily dosing of CUDC-427 induced tumor regression or stasis in certain DLBCL xenograft and B-cell lymphoma syngeneic mouse models.

IRAK-4 program presentation:

Curis’ collaborator Aurigene presented a poster entitled “Novel IRAK-4 inhibitors exhibit highly potent anti-proliferative activity in DLBCL cell lines with activating MYD88 L265P mutation” that included data from multiple chemically distinct series of potent oral IRAK-4 inhibitors. These compounds were shown to potently inhibit IRAK-4 kinase activity in biochemical assays as well as proliferation of MYD88 mutant DLBCL cell lines. Anti-tumor activity in DLBCL was further confirmed in a MYD88 mutant xenograft model. Some of these compounds also significantly reduced disease burden in a rat collagen-induced arthritis model, an in vivo model for inflammation.

“We are pleased with the promising preclinical activity of the IRAK-4 targeting compounds in both cell-based and animal models, especially in MYD88 mutant DLBCL tumor models,” said Ali Fattaey, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Curis. “It has been shown that activating mutations in the MYD88 gene lead to dysregulation of its downstream target IRAK-4 in a number of hematologic malignancies, including Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia and a subset of DLBCLs, making IRAK-4 an attractive target for the treatment of these cancers. We expect to select a development candidate and to exercise the option to exclusively license molecules within this program shortly thereafter under the terms of our collaboration agreement. We continue to anticipate IND filing for this program later this year.” (Original Source)

Shares of Curis Inc. closed yesterday at $2.79 . CRIS has a 1-year high of $3.50 and a 1-year low of $1.09. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $2.80 and its 200-day moving average is $1.95.

On the ratings front, Curis Inc. has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on April 20, Robert W. Baird analyst Brian Skorney reiterated a Buy rating on CRIS, with a price target of $5, which represents a potential upside of 79.2% from where the stock is currently trading. Separately, on January 28, Roth Capital’s Joseph Pantginis reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $6.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Brian Skorney and Joseph Pantginis have a total average return of 19.4% and 13.9% respectively. Skorney has a success rate of 66.2% and is ranked #209 out of 3577 analysts, while Pantginis has a success rate of 56.7% and is ranked #80.

Curis Inc is abiotechnology company engaged in developing and commercializing drug candidates for the treatment of human cancers. Its products includeCUDC-907,phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase andsmall molecule inhibitor of histone deacetylase.