Stock Update (NASDAQ:KITE): Kite Pharma Inc and GE Global Research Announce Strategic Collaboration to Automate Manufacturing of Engineered T Cell Therapies

Kite Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ:KITE), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing engineered autologous T cell therapy (eACT™) products for the treatment of cancer, and GE Global Research (NYSE:GE), the centralized research and development hub for GE, today announced that they have formed a strategic research collaboration to develop a next-generation, functionally integrated and automated manufacturing system for engineered T cell therapy.

Kite and GE Global Research aim to change the paradigm of engineered T cell therapy manufacturing by accelerating the development of automation technologies that have the potential to reduce cost, improve speed, and minimize variability.  As a result, automated manufacturing technologies could enable more widespread availability of engineered T cell therapies.

This collaboration brings together complementary capabilities from each company, including Kite’s scientific leadership in T cell biology and manufacturing and GE Global Research’s deep expertise in the design and development of innovative manufacturing applications for the biopharmaceutical industry.

“We are excited to announce a strategic collaboration with GE Global Research, a world leader in medical technologies and a company that shares our commitment to the future of T cell-based immunotherapy,” said Arie Belldegrun, M.D., FACS, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Kite. “GE Global Research is the ideal partner to realize our vision to advance engineered T cell manufacturing to a functionally integrated and fully automated process.  This unique partnership further positions us to deliver on the promise of T cell-based cancer immunotherapy for patients worldwide.”

Michael Idelchik, Vice President for Advanced Technologies at GE Global Research, said, “Cell-based immunotherapy has tremendous potential and could fundamentally change the way various diseases are treated. Together with Kite, a scientific pioneer in the field, we are focused on advancing innovation, delivering end-to-end manufacturing solutions, and building a robust ecosystem that supports widespread adoption of these important therapies and the industry as a whole.” (Original Source)

Shares of Kite Pharma closed yesterday at $72.86, down $3.19 or -4.19%. KITE has a 1-year high of $89.84 and a 1-year low of $41.95. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $75.24 and its 200-day moving average is $64.66.

On the ratings front, Kite Pharma has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report released yesterday, Maxim Group analyst Jason McCarthy reiterated a Buy rating on KITE, with a price target of $87, which implies an upside of 19.4% from current levels. Separately, on the same day, Stifel Nicolaus’ Thomas Shrader reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $86.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Jason McCarthy and Thomas Shrader have a total average return of -0.3% and 4.0% respectively. McCarthy has a success rate of 59.0% and is ranked #2491 out of 3642 analysts, while Shrader has a success rate of 63.0% and is ranked #1266.

The street is mostly Bullish on KITE stock. Out of 8 analysts who cover the stock, 6 suggest a Buy rating and 2 recommend to Hold the stock. The 12-month average price target assigned to the stock is $105.50, which implies an upside of 44.8% from current levels.

Kite Pharma Inc is a clinical-stage bio pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel cancer immunotherapy products designed to harness the power of a patient’s own immune system to eradicate cancer cells.


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