Iovance Gives Clinical Data Update For Melanoma Drug

Iovance Biotherapeutics shared clinical data update for Lifileucel used in advanced melanoma from its Cohort 2 in the C-144-01 study. In the study, Lifileucel indicated a 36.4% overall response rate including 4.5% complete responses and 31.8% partial responses with the median duration of response (DOR) not being reached at 28.1 months of median study follow-up.

Iovance Biotherapeutics (IOVA) will present the data at the upcoming American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) 2021 Annual Meeting

Iovance Biotherapeutics’ President and CEO, Maria Fardis, Ph.D. said, “We are very excited to report our latest Cohort 2 melanoma data in an oral presentation at AACR. The long term follow up data show that median duration of response was not reached at 28.1 months of median study follow up.”

“Furthermore, overall response rate remained at 36.4 percent and we saw a continued deepening of response in 17 percent of the patients. The data continue to demonstrate durability and depth of our lifileucel TIL therapy response after a one-time treatment, in a difficult to treat patient population with advanced melanoma. We are honored that AACR has chosen our melanoma Cohort 2 data to be featured in a clinical trials plenary session,” Fardis added. (See Iovance Biotherapeutics stock analysis on TipRanks)

Following the clinical update from IOVA, Oppenheimer analyst Mark Breidenbach reiterated a Buy with a price target of $57 on the stock. Breidenbach said, “In our view, the biggest surprise was continuing tumor shrinkage in several patients long after treatment, including a CR [complete response] that developed at 24 months.”

“We believe these data underscore a key selling point of TIL [tumor infiltrating lymphocytes] therapy—the possibility of extremely long-lasting responses for patients, regardless of prior PD-1 checkpoint antibody exposure. In our recent fireside chat, Iovance’s CEO suggested post-treatment tumor inflammation can take years to subside, which may explain the continuing tumor shrinkage,” Breidenbach added.

Overall, the rest of the Street is bullish on the stock with a Strong Buy consensus rating based on 4 Buys. The average analyst price target of $53.50 implies that IOVA shares have approximately 77.2% upside potential to current levels.

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