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Despite A Volatile Trading Week, Bellicum's EHA Presentation Merits A Second Look

Despite A Volatile Trading Week, Bellicum's EHA Presentation Merits A Second Look

Bellicum Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: BLCM) was at its volatile best all this week. After a 14-percent gain Monday, the stock pulled back slightly Tuesday and retreated by less than 2 percent Wednesday.

It rallied over 10 percent Thursday, only to slip by about 7 percent Friday amid the Bellicum's presentation at the European Hematology Association conference, in Spain.

Bellicum Pharma is into the business of developing cellular immunotherapies for various forms of cancer, including both hematological and solid tumors, as well as orphan inherited blood disorder.

Following Bellicum's update at the EHA meeting, Cantor Fitzgerald said the company announced additional data from its ongoing phase 1/2 study with BPX-501 in patients receiving blood stem cell transplant due to malignant and non-malignant blood diseases. The data provided in the update was from 98 patients at 180-days of follow up or greater, as opposed to the 81 number reported previously in the abstract.

Giving the key takeaways, analysts Elemer Piros and Justin Kim said:

  • The company reported marginal updates on patient results at longer follow-up at the EHA meeting.
  • Intervention with rimiducid successfully resolved all controllable acute Graft vs Host Disease cases, which make up 45 percent of all aGvHD.
  • The current rates of disease relapse, non-relapse mortality, and infection incidence were below historical data.

GvHD occurs after the transplant of a bone marrow or stem cell belonging to another individual, as the transplanted cells treat the recipient's body as foreign and attack it.

Detailing the data, Cantor Fitzgerald said BPX-501 treatment led to a 5-percent rate of transplant-related mortality, with a 3-percent non-relapse mortality and 15-percent disease relapse rate among malignant disease patients. The performance of the patients, according to the firm, was well above historical matched unrelated donor, or MUD, publications. The results of the study showed 68–78 percent 1-year overall survival.

Source: Bellicum Pharma

The firm reminded that the E.U. primary endpoint of the study would assess event-free survival composite of death, GvHD and infection at six months compared with approximately 40 matched MUD patients.

"We expect the observation MUD study, which is in the process of being initiated, to provide relevant context for BPX-501," the firm said.

The firm estimates that an additional $100 million in capital is required to reach commercialization, which it thinks could be sourced from potential licensing fees or from issuing new equity.

A such, Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated its Overweight rating on the shares of Bellicum and the $35 price target it has for its shares.

At time of writing, Bellicum shares were down a steep 7.33 percent at $12.95.

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Latest Ratings for BLCM

Aug 2018MaintainsBuyBuy
Apr 2018UpgradesMarket PerformOutperform
Jan 2018DowngradesOutperformMarket Perform

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