H.C. Wainwright Reiterates Buy On Agenus Following 2Q14 Results

In a research report issued this morning, H.C. Wainwright analyst Reni Benjamin reiterated coverage with a Buy rating on Agenus Inc. (AGEN), and a $6 price target, following AGEN’s second quarter update.

The following bullets contain some highlights from the report:

  • Highlights of the quarter include a $100 MM collaborative agreement with Merck (MRK) for the development of checkpoint modulators, final results from the Company’s Phase 2 Prophage trial in gliblastoma multiforme, and six-month booster data from the Phase 2 trial of HerpV in genital herpes. Additionally, a malaria vaccine using the QS-21 adjuvant has been accepted for EMA regulatory review. Immuno-oncology remains a focus of Agenus’ pipeline, which currently includes eight antibodies against a variety of checkpoint molecules. With $62.8 MM in cash, a growing pipeline of checkpoint inhibitors to enter the clinic in 2016, and the potential to secure new partnerships, we believe Agenus represents an undervalued player in the immuno-oncology space.
  • Final 24 month data from a study of Prophage G-100 vaccine in newly diagnosed GBM demonstrated a median OS of 24 months for patients receiving Prophage along with the standard of care (SOC), compared to 15 months for historical controls. Another HSP-based vaccine, HerpV, demonstrated a 75% reduction in viral load in patients with genital herpes who mounted an immune response to the vaccine—a subset including approximately 50% of trial participants. In our opinion, these data should make both the Prophage and HerpV programs attractive to partners for continued development.

According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts and bloggers success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Reni Benjamin currently has a one-year average return of 3.2% and a 48% success rate. Benjamin has a -8% average profit recommending AGEN, and is ranked #1575 out of 3222 analysts.

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