How is it doing

Immunotherapy treatment Clevegen is on phase I/II trial (MATINS) for metastatic cutaneous melanoma as well as hepatobiliary/hepatocellular, pancreatic, ovarian and colorectal cancers.

Tumour cells are adept at creating a shield around themselves to evade detection by the immune system, therefore staving off destruction.

Clevegen has been designed to recognise cancer and break the cell’s protective shell.

The treatment is an anti-Clever-1 antibody which causes changes in the immune environment of solid tumours by switching Clever-1 positive immune suppressive macrophages to immune active macrophages.

Ultimately, if it is successful, this new breed of treatment will be used in combination with PD-1 inhibitors to tackle the killer disease.

Traumakine

Clevegen has helped the company rebuild after a major disappointment with another drug Traumakine.

A phase III trial as a treatment for lung inflammation condition ARDS missed its target and there was no benefit against the placebo.

Faron (LON:FARN) is working with drug regulators to work out why the results were poor and is confident Traumakine can be of benefit to some patients.

 

What the boss says: Markku Jalkanen, CEO

“We are thrilled with the progress the MATINS [Clevegen] study has made during the last few months.
“We believe we have the first macrophage immune checkpoint drug in clinical development promoting immune activation and are encouraged by the latest data indicating potential early efficacy and good tolerability.
“We expect to progress the cohort expansion phase of the study in Q3 2019 in patients with late-stage colorectal cancer.”

 

Inflection points

• In October, Faron said its Clevegen treatment could potentially induce a “stronger immune response” at lower doses, increasing its safety margins
• Faron finds a partner from the many said to be watching MATINS trial data
• Shares doubled since results from MATINS trial started to be released
• Traumakine reboots as a treatment for a specific type of ARDS sufferer who has a special type of genetic mutation known as C/T.

 

Blue Sky

If Clevegen proves to a way of re-awakening T-cells in metastatic tumours, the potential as an immunotherapy treatment is enormous
Traumakine is a smaller opportunity now but still substantial for Faron
Before the Traumakine trial result, the shares almost reached 900p.