Wells Fargo Says Buy Micro-Cap Drugmaker Ahead Of Cancer Immunotherapy Meeting

Shares of Infinity Pharmaceuticals (INFI) are on the rise after Wells Fargo analyst Jim Birchenough upgraded the stock to a buy-equivalent rating following the selection of IPI-549 monotherapy data as a late breaker oral presentation at an immunotherapy-focused cancer meeting in November. The analyst argued that the develop-stage company's IPI-549 is showing promise in the area of immuno-oncology with validation of targeting tumor-associated macrophages.

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BUY INFINITY: In a research note to investors this morning, Wells Fargo's Birchenough upgraded Infinity Pharmaceuticals to Outperform from Market Perform and more than tripled his price target, to $5.00 from $1.50. Birchenough's upgrade follows the selection of the micro-cap drugmaker's IPI-549 monotherapy data as a late breaker oral presentation at the Society of Immunotherapy of Cancer annual meeting in early November, he noted. The analyst told investors that he sees a "reasonable likelihood" of proof-of-concept response rate data, and with likely validation of tumor macrophage targeting in immuno-oncology and a unique mechanism of action he sees upside potential not reflected at current stock price. While acknowledging that Infinity Pharmaceuticals' IPI-549 development still remains at an earlier stage of development than other late breaker oral presentations at the meeting, like Five Prime Therapeutics' (FPRX) cabiralizumab, Birchenough told investors that he believes the selection for late breaker oral presentation suggests cause for optimism.

PRICE ACTION: In morning trading, shares of Infinity Pharmaceuticals have jumped $1.06, or about 63%, to $2.73. 

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