BioTuesdays

Mackie starts Medicenna Therapeutics at speculative buy; PT $1.50

Mackie Research launched coverage of Medicenna Therapeutics (TSX:MDNA) with a “speculative buy” rating and a 12-month target price of $1.50. The stock closed at 68 cents on April 29.

Medicenna’s MDNA55 is a first-in-class IL-4/exotoxin A fusion protein in development to treat recurrent glioblastoma (rGBM) – a rare type of aggressive brain cancer. MDNA55 is administered directly to the brain tumor site via convection-enhanced delivery, which enables it to bypass the blood-brain barrier.

Analyst Andre Uddin writes that in previous studies, 25 rGBM patients receiving MDNA55 achieved a compelling objective response rate (ORR) of 56% – far better than the average 4% to 6% ORR in rGBM trials with other medicines. MDNA55 was also safe and well tolerated.

MDNA55 is currently in a single-arm Phase 2b study. Mr. Uddin said preliminary results showed that 27 subjects on MDNA55 had a median survival of 11.8 months – longer than 5.6-to-eight months by other rGBM drugs. Interim top-line results of this trial are expected in June 2019.

“Late-stage orphan indications are highly being sought after by large biotech and Big Pharma,” he said.

Mr. Uddin said Medicenna’s share price has been under pressure. “With the Phase 2 interim top-line results expected in June, we believe high risk tolerant investors should take advantage of the buying opportunity,” he added.

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