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Cancer Research Highlight: ImmunoGen's Heme Program Rumbles Under The Surface

Dec. 03, 2018 8:00 AM ETImmunoGen, Inc. (IMGN)PFE, SNY, STML13 Comments
Zach Hartman profile picture
Zach Hartman


  • ImmunoGen's spotlight has long been on development of novel therapy for ovarian cancer.
  • News from the ASH Congress points to a potential future direction in leukemia.
  • Does encouraging early data change the investment outlook for the company?

Please note that I am affiliated with Avisol Capital Partners and their Total Pharma Tracker service. They have also covered the companies in this article in their writings, and I wanted to make readers aware of the potential for overlapping coverage.

If you pay attention at all to antibody-drug conjugate developer ImmunoGen (NASDAQ:IMGN), then your focus is most likely drawn to its folate receptor-alpha-targeted conjugate mirvetuximab soravtansine. And rightfully so, since this agent has Fast Track designation from the FDA, and it's in phase 3 trials for an area of heavy unmet need.

But as with many developmental biotechs, IMGN has more irons in the fire, as well. Specifically, IMGN is developing a pair of antibody drug conjugates, IMGN632 and IMGN779, which target CD123 and CD33, respectively. CD33, you may recall, is a target of interest for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and related malignancies, and Pfizer's (PFE) gemtuzumab ozogamicin is an approved antibody-drug conjugate in that space.

The news

IMGN announced presentations of preclinical and clinical data relating to development of IMGN632 and IMGN779 at the Annual Congress of the American Society for Hematology (ASH) in San Diego.

First, abstract 2647 is a poster presentation highlighting the preclinical evidence supporting a novel combination of IMGN632 and a PARP inhibitor in AML, and IMGN632 alone in blastic plasmacytoid dendritic cell neoplasm (BPDCN). As you can see below, adding PFE's PARP inhibitor increases the ability to induce apoptosis (a form of cell death) in AML cells.

IMGN632 was also the focus of abstract 27, an oral presentation focusing on phase 1 findings in relapsed/refractory AML. You can view the slides here. IMGN632 demonstrated encouraging remission rates in the 23 patients reported so far. It's also worth noting that IMGN saw some preliminary responses in a small cohort of patients with BPDCN in this

This article was written by

Zach Hartman profile picture
I am a former PhD scientist-turned-writer focused on cancer education. My writings in Seeking Alpha have been devoted to helping people identify promising investment opportunities in cancer research through commentary of recent events. Readers can learn more about other aspects of cancer research by visiting my site Invest Against Cancer.I also collaborate with Avisol Capital Partners on their Marketplace service known as the Total Pharma Tracker (TPT). Some of my work will be available to TPT subscribers either exclusively, or in advance. If you are interested, please click the link above!

Analyst’s Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

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