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Celldex (CLDX) Posts Wider Q1 Loss, Focus on Pipeline

Celldex Therapeutics, Inc. CLDX reported a first-quarter 2016 loss of 35 cents per share, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 34 cents per share and the year-ago loss of 33 cents per share.

Total revenues in the first quarter of 2016 increased 168.1% year over year to $1.3 million, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1 million. Higher revenues were mainly due to the company’s clinical trial collaboration with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company BMY, its research and development agreement with Rockefeller University and an increase in grant revenue.

Research and development expenses increased 9.2% from the year-ago period to $27.4 million, reflecting higher headcount. General and administrative spend shot up 52.8% to $9.3 million, reflecting higher stock-based compensation expense, increased headcount, and commercial planning costs for Rintega and glembatumumab vedotin.

Celldex, which suffered a setback in Mar 2016 related to the development of Rintega, has realigned its pipeline and provided an update on the same. The company is currently conducting a phase IIb study on glembatumumab vedotin, its most advanced pipeline candidate, in patients with metastatic triple negative breast cancers that overexpress gpNMB.

The candidate is also in a phase II single-agent study in metastatic melanoma with data expected in the second half of the year.

Meanwhile, varlilumab is being evaluated in combination with Bristol-Myers’ Opdivo in a study that includes cohorts in advanced non-small cell lung cancer, colorectal cancer, ovarian cancer, head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, renal cell carcinoma and glioblastoma.

Varlilumab is also being evaluated in combination with Roche’s RHHBY atezolizumab in a phase I/II study for solid tumors.

Celldex expects that its cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities will be enough to fund operating expenses and capital expenditure requirements through the first half of 2018.

Celldex is a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock. ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ANIP is a better-ranked stock in the health care sector carrying a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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