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The money moment during yesterday’s Cue Biopharma (CUE) update call came when CMO Ken Pienta took it upon himself to interject during the Q&A:

“As a clinician and a medical oncologist I just have to stop and say that data is amazing!”

Granted he was referring to tumor-specific t-cells circulating in patients’ blood samples. But the statement could easily apply to the rest of the data presented, too.

Starting with the fact Cue-101 in combination with Merck’s (MRK) Keytruda has worked in four out of four patients at clinically effective dosage levels.

Dramatically and immediately, I might add!

Consider: Whereas Keytruda alone typically takes anywhere from 12 to 24 weeks to generate a response – in front-line patients, no less – CUE-101 plus Keytruda generated impressive results within six weeks (or less), including a patient with a tumor reduction of greater than 50% at the first scan.

In short, we couldn’t have asked for more compelling data yesterday. It met or topped my expectations.

Most important of all, I’m now convinced that Cue finally has enough of a data set to start seriously talking with strategic partners/buyers.

Those discussions take time, of course. But the more time that passes, the better the data’s going to get and therefore, the more valuable.

With that in mind, here’s a full rundown on the important takeaways from yesterday’s conference call and my thoughts on the recent trading activity…

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