Adaptimmune Spikes 127% Post-ASCO; Analyst Triples Price Target

Shares in UK-based biopharma Adaptimmune (ADAP) spiked 127% in Friday’s trading, after the company reported positive durability and efficacy data in synovial sarcoma at the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting.

The data demonstrated durability and responses in synovial sarcoma, supporting SPEARHEAD-1 as a potential registrational trial, ADAP announced. Dr David Hong spoke of a 50% response rate with inclusion of unconfirmed PR assessed after data cut-off. The ASCO presentation also described a new response in a patient with lung cancer, and a response in a patient with head and neck cancer.

At the same time, Adaptimmune also announced new responses in the SURPASS trial, confirming the potential for SPEAR T‑cell therapies targeting MAGE-A4 to treat a broad range of cancers in addition to sarcoma. In the SURPASS trial, three patients have responded out of the first four treated with ADP-A2M4CD8, ADAP said.

These data further support the rationale for two new Phase 2 trials – SPEARHEAD-2 in head and neck cancer, which will begin later this year, and a second trial in esophagogastric junction (EGJ) cancer planned for 1H 2021.

“We are raising our PT on shares of ADAP to $9 from $3 driven off data presented at ASCO which demonstrated broader platform value for the company’s T-cell receptor (TCR)-T-cell platform technology as well as increased probability of success (POS) for the indication of synovial sarcoma (SS)” cheered Mizuho Securities analyst Mara Goldstein following the presentation. She now assigns a probability of success for this indication of 90%, up from 70%.

According to Goldstein, responses accumulating in other tumor types, while not conclusive, point to broader potential in solid tumors. However she “does not yet see a critical mass in responses to more comfortably assign greater value to new indications.” As a result, the analyst reiterates her hold rating on the stock but tripled her price target to $9. Given ADAP’s recent rally this now translates into downside potential of 19%.

Meanwhile JonesTrading analyst Soumit Roy upgraded ADAP to buy from hold previously. He has a more bullish $15 price target on the stock, indicating further upside potential of 35%. Overall, ADAP continues to hold a Moderate Buy analyst consensus, with the Street evenly split between hold and buy. The average analyst price target currently stands at $10 (13% downside potential). (See ADAP stock analysis on TipRanks).

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