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Marker Therapeutics rockets after CEO says Phase 2 leukemia trial with T-cell therapy in works

With the help of Marker's technology, a population of T-cells attacks multiple cancer targets and works to activate a patient's immune system to trigger anti-tumor activity
cancerous cells
Marker Therapeutics is a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company that develops T cell therapies to treat blood cancers and solid tumors

Shares of Marker Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:MRKR) soared in pre-market trade Friday after the oncology company’s CEO said its multi-antigen targeted T-cell therapy would treat patients with post-transplant acute myeloid leukemia in a Phase 2 trial.

In an update to investors, Peter Hoang, Marker’s CEO announced that the company intends to enroll the first patients suffering from this late-stage leukemia in a Phase 2 trial for its T-cell treatment by the end of the year. An investigational new drug application (IND) for the therapy is also set to be filed in the third quarter.

Investors applauded the clinical update, sending Marker’s shares up 17.9% to $7.11 before the opening bell.

READ: Cancer-focused Marker Therapeutics shares rise after update on clinical trial pipeline

With the help of Marker's technology, a population of T-cells attacks multiple cancer targets and works to activate a patient's immune system to trigger anti-tumor activity. 

"Our MultiTAA T cell therapies have continued to generate positive and compelling clinical data across various indications in several ongoing investigator-sponsored clinical trials led by Baylor College of Medicine,” said Hoang in a statement. “We plan to advance a Phase 2 Company-sponsored clinical trial in post-transplant acute myeloid leukemia (AML)—a disease area and patient population for which there are limited treatment options.”

In other news, the Houston, Texas company is also pushing ahead with the development of its T-cell vaccine candidates, TPIV200 and TPIV100/110, to treat ovarian and breast cancers. There are now a pair of Phase 2 studies for TPIV200 in triple-negative breast cancer and ovarian cancer.

And looking ahead, interim data from the ovarian cancer Phase 2 study is expected by the fourth quarter of this year.

Eye on vaccines

Marker is also moving forward with the development of its PolyStart platform, a nucleic acid-based technology which aims to improve the potency of vaccines.

The company expects its cash position, which amounted to $61.7 million as of December, is sufficient to fund its operations until the fourth quarter of 2020.

Marker Therapeutics is a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company that develops T cell therapies to treat blood cancers and solid tumors.

Contact Ellen Kelleher at [email protected]

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