SAN DIEGO, Sept. 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Pfenex Inc. (NYSE American: PFNX) today announced that it has earned an $11 million development milestone under its development and license agreement with Jazz Pharmaceuticals. The milestone is associated with process development activities for PF745, a recombinant crisantaspase with half-life extension technology.
“We are very pleased with our progress on PF745 and we believe the Jazz collaboration overall further validates the versatility of our proprietary protein expression platform and the quality of our development capabilities,” said Eef Schimmelpennink, Chief Executive Officer of Pfenex. “Similarly, we are appreciative of the progress recently reported by Jazz on PF743 (JZP-458) with the completion of the Phase 1 study and announcement of plans to initiate a Phase 2/3 study later in 2019.”
Under the terms of the development and license agreement, Pfenex is eligible to receive an aggregate total of up to $224.5 million in development and sales milestone fees, of which $177.5 million is still eligible to be received by Pfenex. Of this $177.5 million, $18.5 million are development milestones, $34 million are regulatory milestones, and $125 million are sales milestones. Pfenex may also be eligible to receive tiered royalties on worldwide sales of any products resulting from the collaboration.
About Pfenex Inc.
Pfenex is a clinical-stage development and licensing biotechnology company focused on leveraging its Pfēnex Expression Technology® to develop and improve protein therapies for unmet patient needs. Using the patented Pfēnex Expression Technology platform, Pfenex has created an advanced pipeline of potential therapeutic equivalents, vaccines, biologics and biosimilars. Pfenex’s lead product candidate is PF708, a therapeutic equivalent candidate to Forteo® (teriparatide) for the treatment of osteoporosis. In addition, Pfenex is developing hematology/oncology products, including PF743, a recombinant crisantaspase, and PF745, a recombinant crisantaspase with half-life extension technology, in collaboration with Jazz Pharmaceuticals. Pfenex also uses its Pfēnex Expression Technology platform to produce CRM197, a diphtheria toxoid carrier protein used in prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines.
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Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements generally relate to future events or Pfenex's future financial or operating performance. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements because they contain words such as "may," "will," "should," "expects," "plans," "anticipates," "could," "intends," "target," "projects," "contemplates," "believes," "estimates," "predicts," "potential" or "continue" or the negative of these words or other similar terms or expressions that concern Pfenex's future expectations, strategy, plans or intentions. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the future potential of Pfenex's product candidates and the company in general, including future plans to advance, develop, manufacture and commercialize its product candidates, Jazz’s expectation to initiate a single arm pivotal Phase 2/3 study later this year, and Pfenex’s expectations with regard to future milestones and royalty payments from Pfenex’s collaboration with Jazz Pharmaceuticals. Pfenex's expectations and beliefs regarding these matters may not materialize, and actual results in future periods are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by these forward-looking statements as a result of the uncertainties inherent in the clinical drug development process, including, without limitation, Pfenex's ability to successfully demonstrate the efficacy and safety of its product candidates; the pre-clinical and clinical results for its product candidates, which may not support further development of product candidates or may require Pfenex to conduct additional clinical trials or modify ongoing clinical trials or regulatory pathways; challenges related to commencement, patient enrollment, completion, and analysis of clinical trials; difficulties in achieving and demonstrating biosimilarity in formulations; Pfenex's ability to manage operating expenses; Pfenex's ability to obtain additional funding to support its business activities and establish and maintain strategic business alliances and new business initiatives; Pfenex's dependence on third parties for development, manufacture, marketing, sales and distribution of products; unexpected expenditures; litigation and other proceedings regarding intellectual property rights, including potential future litigation by Eli Lilly and Company with respect to PF708; and difficulties in obtaining and maintaining intellectual property protection for its product candidates. Information on these and additional risks, uncertainties, and other information affecting Pfenex's business and operating results is contained in Pfenex’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2019 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and in its other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to Pfenex as of the date hereof, and Pfenex disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, except as required by law.
Susan A. Knudson
Chief Financial Officer