Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) announced that it has entered into a worldwide research and license agreement with Alpine Immune Sciences, Inc. (AIS), a privately-held biotechnology company, to discover and develop protein-based immunotherapies targeting the immune synapse to treat cancer. AIS will grant Kite an exclusive license to two programs from its transmembrane immunomodulatory protein (TIP™) technology, which Kite plans to further engineer into chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) and T cell receptor (TCR) product candidates. This collaboration will accelerate Kite’s efforts to establish the next generation of engineered T cell therapies specifically designed to overcome the inhibitory mechanisms present in the tumor microenvironment.
“The field of immuno-oncology has the potential to significantly improve the outcome of patients with cancer,” said Arie Belldegrun, M.D., FACS, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Kite. “We believe the ability of AIS’ TIP™ technology to modulate the immune synapse can be incorporated into engineered T cell therapies to advance CAR and TCR product candidates into multiple tumor types. This collaboration is another example of Kite’s continuing commitment to advancing our pipeline through transformative technologies grounded in innovative science.”
Under the terms of the collaboration, Kite will make an upfront payment to AIS of $5 million and additional payments to support AIS’ research. AIS will be eligible to receive milestone payments based upon the successful achievement of pre-specified research, clinical, and regulatory milestones totaling $530 million plus low single-digit royalty payments on product sales. Kite will receive an exclusive, worldwide license to research, develop and commercialize engineered autologous T cell therapies incorporating two programs coming from the AIS platform.
“AIS was established with a team of experienced scientists to capitalize on our keen understanding of immunology and protein engineering,” said Mitchell H. Gold, M.D., Executive Chairman. “At AIS, we have a robust discovery platform to identify molecules capable of directly modulating the immune synapse. We look forward to working with Kite, a company that uniquely understands the complexities surrounding cancer biology.” (Original Source)
Shares of Cisco are trading at $28.80, down $0.16 or 0.54%. CSCO has a 1-year high of $30.31 and a 1-year low of $23.03. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $26.76 and its 200-day moving average is $27.57.
On the ratings front, Cisco has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on October 21, Piper Jaffray analyst Troy Jensen maintained a Buy rating on CSCO, with a price target of $34, which represents a potential upside of 17.4% from where the stock is currently trading. Separately, on the same day, William Blair’s Jason Ader reiterated a Buy rating on the stock .
According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Troy Jensen and Jason Ader have a total average return of 5.8% and 5.6% respectively. Jensen has a success rate of 50.5% and is ranked #801 out of 3802 analysts, while Ader has a success rate of 53.5% and is ranked #909.
Overall, one research analyst has rated the stock with a Sell rating, 4 research analysts have assigned a Hold rating and 12 research analysts have given a Buy rating to the stock. When considering if perhaps the stock is under or overvalued, the average price target is $32.77 which is 13.2% above where the stock closed yesterday.