Medarex to Receive Milestone Payment from MedImmune
PRINCETON, N.J., Aug. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Medarex, Inc. (Nasdaq: MEDX) announced today that its partner MedImmune, Inc. has initiated a Phase 2A multi-dose clinical trial of MEDI-545 for the potential treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE or lupus). MEDI-545 is a fully human antibody generated by Medarex's UltiMAb Human Antibody Development System(R). Under the terms of the agreement, Medarex will receive a milestone payment of an undisclosed amount.
The Phase 2A clinical trial is designed to evaluate the safety and tolerability of multiple subcutaneous dose schedules of MEDI-545 or placebo in adult patients with moderate to severe active lupus. The study will also assess the effects of MEDI-545 on disease activity in lupus patients. This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial is expected to enroll 80 patients and will be conducted at 20 sites in the United States.
MedImmune is also conducting a Phase 1 clinical trial for MEDI-545 in idiopathic inflammatory myositis, an immunological disease that involves chronic muscle inflammation, pain and weakness.
"Data from an earlier reported placebo-controlled Phase 1 study suggested therapeutic activity with single doses in patients with lupus and demonstrated an acceptable safety profile," said Geoffrey M. Nichol, M.B.Ch.B., Senior Vice President of Product Development at Medarex. "We are very excited about the role of the interferon alpha inflammatory pathway and look forward to exploring its potential in treating patients with lupus and other autoimmune diseases."
MEDI-545 (previously known as MDX-1103) is a fully human monoclonal antibody targeting interferon-alpha. Published data indicate that levels of interferon-alpha are elevated in many patients with active SLE and other autoimmune disorders, and may be associated with disease activity. Preclinical data from animal models suggest that MEDI-545 may suppress the abnormal immune activity associated with lupus by binding to multiple interferon-alpha subtypes seen in the serum of lupus patients.
In November 2004, MedImmune entered into a collaboration with Medarex to focus on two specific antibodies, one of which was MDX-1103 (now known as MEDI-545). Under the terms of the agreement, MedImmune is responsible for all ongoing clinical development activities. Prior to the beginning of pivotal studies, Medarex may elect to co-develop the products in return for the opportunity to co-promote and to receive a share of the commercial profits in the United States. In all other cases, Medarex will be entitled to receive milestone payments and royalties.
Approximately 350,000 individuals in the United States are affected with lupus, a chronic inflammatory disease that causes the body to attack its own tissues and organs, including the skin, joints, blood and kidneys. Treatments for lupus include anti-inflammatory drugs, antimalarials, corticosteroids and drugs approved for other purposes, such as immunosuppressive agents given to cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy or medicines developed to treat arthritis patients. Lupus occurs about 10 times more frequently in adult females than adult males, and is two to three times more common among African Americans, Hispanics, Asians and Native Americans.
Medarex is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and potential commercialization of fully human antibody-based therapeutics to treat life-threatening and debilitating diseases, including cancer, inflammation, autoimmune disorders and infectious diseases. Medarex applies its UltiMAb(R) technology and product development and clinical manufacturing experience to generate, support and potentially commercialize a broad range of fully human antibody product candidates for itself and its partners. More than 40 of these therapeutic product candidates derived from Medarex technology are in human clinical testing or have had INDs submitted for such trials, with seven of the most advanced product candidates currently in Phase 3 clinical trials or the subject of regulatory applications for marketing authorization. Medarex is committed to building value by developing a diverse pipeline of antibody products to address the world's unmet healthcare needs. For more information about Medarex, visit its website at http://www.medarex.com.
Statement on Cautionary Factors
Except for the historical information presented herein, matters discussed herein may constitute forward-looking statements, as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. Statements that are not historical facts, including statements preceded by, followed by, or that include the words "expect"; "potential" or "may"; or similar statements are forward-looking statements. Medarex disclaims, however, any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties include uncertainties related to the outcome of clinical trials, slower than expected rates of patient recruitment, unforeseen safety issues resulting from the administration of MEDI-545 in patients, as well as risks detailed from time to time in Medarex's public disclosure filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2007 and its quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. There can be no assurance that such development efforts will succeed or that other developed products will receive required regulatory clearance or that, even if such regulatory clearance were received, such products would ultimately achieve commercial success. Copies of Medarex's public disclosure filings are available from its investor relations department.
Medarex(R), the Medarex logo and UltiMAb(R) are registered trademarks of Medarex, Inc. All rights are reserved.
|SOURCE Medarex, Inc.|
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved