Roth Capital Keeps Lion Bio (LBIO) at 'Buy' Following Juno's (JUNO) ROCKET Study Update
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Roth Capital affirms Lion Biotechnologies (Nasdaq: LBIO) at Buy with a price target of $15 following ROCKET study news from Juno Therapeutics (Nasdaq: JUNO) on Wednesday. The firm is confident in Lion Bio's TIL therapies.
Analyst Joseph Pantginis commented today,
The previous Phase I study of JCR015, the incidence of grade 3 or higher neurotoxicity was 28%; this in addition to severe cytokine release syndrome occurring in 24%. We believe that Lion’s TIL platform therapy has a safety profile that is differentiated from CAR-T therapies. Notably, most adverse events from Dr. Rosenberg’s landmark TIL study in 93 patients were caused by concomitant IL-2. While there was evidence of autoimmune related adverse events (including vitiligo, transient uveitis, and vestibular dysfunction), these were less in severity and none resulted in death. We believe technical differences in the two therapeutic approaches can explain the differentiated safety profiles. CAR-T therapies are clonally expanded T cells against a singular protein (in this case, CD19) expressed on target cells, whereas TIL therapies target a heterogeneous array of antigens. Cross-reactivity with non-target cells causes detrimental side effects, which may be magnified by the clonality of CAR-T therapy. With TIL therapy, the severity of off-target effects may be significantly blunted by the heterogeneity of the T cells, precluding the aggressive expansion of any single dominant clone.
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