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NewLink Genetics Reports First Quarter 2016 Financial Results

  • IMPRESS Phase 3 Top-line Results Now Expected in Second Quarter of 2016
  • Pancreatic and Melanoma IDO Pathway Inhibitor Trial Updates at ASCO

-Management to Host Conference Call Today at 8:30 a.m. ET

AMES, Iowa and AUSTIN, Texas, April 29, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- NewLink Genetics Corporation NLNK, -2.34% a biopharmaceutical company at the forefront of discovering, developing and commercializing novel immuno-oncology product candidates, including both cellular immunotherapy and checkpoint inhibitor programs, to improve the lives of patients with cancer, today reported consolidated financial results for the first quarter of 2016.

"We had a productive quarter and made solid progress in achieving our mission of bringing patients with cancer better treatment options," said Charles J. Link, Jr., M.D., Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Scientific Officer. "The pivotal IMPRESS trial for patients with resected pancreatic cancer is moving rapidly toward final analysis. And, we are preparing for multiple updates from both our proprietary and partnered IDO pathway inhibitor clinical programs at key scientific meetings in 2016."

Nicholas Vahanian M.D., President and Chief Medical Officer, added, "With the upcoming clinical trial read outs, we anticipate that these data will bring us closer to clinical validation of our IDO pathway inhibitor program. The team at NewLink Genetics continues with confidence and excitement as our partner, Genentech begins to report on the clinical development of GDC-0919 alone and in combination studies. We look forward to Genentech reporting on the results from these studies this year. "

Program Updates:

HyperAcute(R) Cellular Immunotherapy Program

Algenpantucel-L/IMPRESS Trial

Today, the company reported that it expects to report top-line results from the IMPRESS trial during the second quarter of 2016. Algenpantucel-L is the most advanced clinical program utilizing NewLink Genetics' HyperAcute Cellular Immunotherapy platform technology. IMPRESS is a randomized, controlled, two-arm Phase 3 trial (n=722) for patients with resected pancreatic cancer designed to test algenpantucel-L in combination with the standard of care versus the standard of care alone.

IDO Pathway Inhibitor Programs


At the upcoming American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting from June 3 to 7, 2016 in Chicago, NewLink Genetics expects to report on clinical updates on its proprietary IDO pathway inhibitor programs. Abstracts that have been selected include:

  • Interim data update from a Phase 2 trial with a target enrollment of 80 patients evaluating the addition of indoximod to gemcitabine/nab-paclitaxel for patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer.
  • Mid-trial and safety data update from a Phase 2 trial with a target enrollment of 96 patients of indoximod and ipilimumab or PD-1 inhibitors for patients with stage 3 or 4 advanced or metastatic melanoma.

Additional data updates expected in the second half of 2016 include:

  • Mid-trial update from a Phase 2 trial with a target enrollment of 132 patients of indoximod for patients with refractory malignant brain tumors.
  • Guidance on timing of preliminary results in a randomized Phase 2 trial with a target enrollment of 154 patients of indoximod for patients with metastatic breast cancer.

GDC-0919 Small Molecule Program

The company is anticipating a clinical update from the combination study of GDC-0191. Genentech recently reported that it will update the Phase 1b study with a target enrollment of 224 patients in solid tumors at the European Society of Medical Oncology from October 7-11, 2016 in Denmark. The dose-escalation and expansion study combines GDC-0919 and atezolizumab (PD-L1 Mab).

In 2014, NewLink Genetics entered into an exclusive worldwide license agreement with Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, for the development of NLG919, NewLink Genetics' IDO pathway inhibitor. The parties also entered into a research collaboration for the discovery of next generation IDO/TDO compounds.

Financial Results for the Three-Month Period Ended March 31, 2016

Cash Position: NewLink Genetics ended the quarter on March 31, 2016, with cash, cash equivalents, and certificates of deposit totaling $178 million compared to $197.8 million for the year...