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Fate Therapeutics stock up 11% after FDA clears IND application

Sarah Toy

Shares of Fate Therapeutics Inc. were up 11% in premarket trade Wednesday after the company announced that the FDA had cleared its investigational new drug application for FT516, a potential therapy for patients with certain blood cancers. FT516 is a natural killer cell product engineered to make a surface protein called the CD16 Fc receptor. CD16 is a surface receptor that helps regulate an immune response where natural killer cells bind to and kill cancer cells. Cancer patients can have reduced CD16, inhibiting their bodies' tumor-killing responses. FT516's CD16 Fc receptor has been modified so that it will not have this problem -- the idea is that administering this therapy will allow for a better anti-tumor response in cancer patients. Fate Therapeutics said its initial study of FT516 will assess the safety and tolerability of three weekly doses of the therapy to treat certain later-stage blood cancers. Shares of Fate Therapeutics have gained 8% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 9.2%.