Idera Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: IDRA) is having an incredibly strong start to the trading session this morning, and for good reason. The company updated investors with regard to the company’s strategy this morning, following the news surrounding the termination of the proposed merger with BioCryst Pharmaceuticals. Today, we’ll talk about:
- The update;
- what we’re seeing from the stock as a result; and
- what we’ll be watching for haead.
IDRA Heads Up On Update
As mentioned above, Idera Pharmaceuticals is flying early on this morning after providing an update. In a press release issued early this morning, the company updated investors with regard to its corporate strategy and outlook following the termination of the proposed merger with BioCryst. In particular, IDRA outlined several near-term catalysts that seem to be exciting investors. These catalysts include:
- Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IDRA), a pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of its proprietary immune modulator, tilsotolimod, for the treatment of cancer, is providing an update on the company’s corporate strategy and outlook following the recent termination of its proposed merger with BioCryst Pharmaceuticals.
- Continued updates on ILLUMINATE-204 Phase 2 trial of tilsotolimod in combination with ipilimumab in patients with PD-1 refractory melanoma at upcoming medical conferences;
- Recently increased trial sites open to enrollment to 7, (3 additional planned);
Expected completion of enrollment (N=60 patients) by year end 2018;
- Data update following completion of ILLUMINATE-204 Pembrolizumab combination Phase 1 component of the trial;
- Data from ILLUMINATE-101 tilsotolimod monotherapy trial;
- Complete enrollment in ILLUMINATE-204 with topline data in mid-2019;
- Initiation of Investigator Sponsored Trials (IST):
- A Phase 1/2 open label study of intratumoral tilsotolimod in combination with intratumoral ipilimumab and IV nivolumab in a protocol open to multiple tumor types including non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck and urothelial carcinoma. The principal investigator initiating this trial is Aurélien Marabelle, MD, PhD, Clinical Director of the Cancer Immunotherapy Program at Institut Gustave Roussy, Villejuif, France.
- A Phase 2 study of intratumoral tilsotolimod in combination with IV pembrolizumab in patients with NSCLC. The principal investigator initiating this trial is Arafat Tfayli, MD, Professor of Clinical Medicine, Director of Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program at the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC), Lebanon.
- A Phase 2 placebo controlled study of intradermal administration of tilsotolimod in patients with T3/T4 primary melanoma scheduled to undergo a combined re-excision and sentinel node biopsy (SNB) procedure. The principal investigators initiating this are Bas Koster, MD and Tanja de Gruijl, PhD at The VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and
- Potential collaborations and or partnerships with immuno-oncology companies to further demonstrate the utility of tilsotolimod in treating solid tumors.
In a statement, Vincent Milano, CEO at IDRA, had the following to offer:
Today, we advance the next chapter of our company’s future with a clear picture of our mission, which is to ultimately deliver tilsotolimod to as many patients suffering from cancer as we possibly can. We have generated a significant body of evidence for tilsotolimod, including pre-clinical studies, translational research and meaningful clinical data in our ongoing ILLUMINATE-204 trial in anti-PD-1 refractory melanoma, as well as Fast Track Designation from the Food and Drug Administration. This gives us a great deal of confidence in tilsotolimod’s ability to prime the immune system to play a more powerful role in the fight against cancer, representing an exciting value proposition for both shareholders and patients.
We are executing on the pivotal Phase 3 trial, ILLUMINATE-301, in anti-PD-1 refractory melanoma and are partnering with three separate planned investigators/institutions in support of their respective investigator sponsored trials (ISTs), each of which is exploring tilsotolimod in different patient populations. Through the body of data we’ve generated to date, as well as from our discussions with our key opinion leader advisors, it has become abundantly clear to us that tilsotolimod has the opportunity to play a more expanded role in the immuno-oncology landscape, particularly in tumor types with limited immunogenicity that have not previously responded well to check-point inhibition approaches.
What We’re Seeing From The Stock
One of the first lessons that we learn when we start to dig into the market is that the news causes moves. In the case of IDRA, the news proved to be positive. After all, with the termination of the merger, investors were concerned. However, with the near term catalysts highlighted, it seems as though excitement is the general emotion at the moment. So, it comes as no surprise that the stock is headed up in the pre-market. Of course, our partners at Trade Ideas were the first to alert us to the gains. Currently (8:10), IDRA is trading at $1.05 per share after a gain of $0.04 per share or 3.96% thus far today.
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What We’ll Be Watching For Ahead
Moving forward, the CNA Finance team will continue to keep a close eye on IDRA. In particular, we’re interested in following the story surrounding the company’s continued work following the termination of the merger that was expected. Nonetheless, we’ll continue to keep our eyes peeled and bring the news to you as it breaks!
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