Maxim Remains Positive on Kite Pharma (KITE) Following CAR/TCR Pipeline, KTE-C19 Launch Update; Affirms at 'Buy'

October 19, 2016 11:56 AM EDT
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Price: $53.51 +5.42%

Rating Summary:
    15 Buy, 2 Hold, 0 Sell

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Today's Overall Ratings:
    Up: 28 | Down: 20 | New: 17
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Maxim affirms Kite Pharma (Nasdaq: KITE) with a Buy rating and $77 price target on the stock following a pipeline update and KTE-C19 development guidance.

The firm commented today: Kite held its investor day yesterday in New York. At last year's investor day (June 2015), the question was not if CAR-T was effective in no-option B-cell cancer, but rather: is it possible for CAR-T therapies to be manufactured at scale? What will it cost? Is there a feasible business model? In the past year, Kite has greatly expanded its manufacturing and commercial infrastructure in parallel with clinical development of KTE-C19, for which the BLA could be filed this year. As such, at this year's investor day those questions have been answered and the focus has turned to what the commercial launch could look like.

CAR-T, in our view, has arrived at the commercialization doorstep for refractory B-cell cancer. However, this may be just the beginning. KTE-C19 is expanding to multiple indications in B-cell cancer and Kite is already aiming to move down the therapeutic pyramid to earlier stages of disease. The manufacturing plant and commercialization strategies, in our view, are key, as Kite now has the foundation to facilitate the development and ultimately commercialization (if successful) of multiple other CAR and TCR therapies.

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