MORRIS PLAINS, N.J., Jan. 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Immunomedics, Inc. (Nasdaq:IMMU), a biopharmaceutical company primarily focused on the development of monoclonal antibody-based products for the targeted treatment of cancer, autoimmune and other serious diseases, announced that IBC Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IBC), a majority-owned subsidiary, has received notice that its patent application for "Multiple signaling pathways induced by hexavalent, monospecific and bispecific antibodies for enhanced toxicity to B-cell lymphomas and other diseases," will issue as U.S. patent no. 8,349,332 today.
This patent, which provides coverage until 2026, concerns methods of use of hexavalent DOCK-AND-LOCK™ (DNL™) constructs, comprising antibodies and/or antigen-binding antibody fragments tethered together using the Company's patented platform technology. The allowed claims cover bispecific antibodies that bind to CD20 and CD22 antigens on B cells. The DNL™ complexes are of use for the treatment of B-cell malignancies or B-cell-related autoimmune diseases.
At the 2012 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology, the Company reported potent anti-tumor activity of a new class of hexavalent bispecific antibodies targeting CD20 and CD22 in an animal model of human non-Hodgkin lymphoma. These DNL™ complexes extended the median survival time of animals in a statistically significant manner. (Please refer to the Company's press release at www.immunomedics.com/pdfs/news/2012/pr12122012.pdf for more information).
"We are pleased to receive this patent. These hexavalent bispecific antibodies are more effective in killing of B cells, even in the absence of cross-linking antibodies, by inducing multiple signaling pathways in the target cell," commented Cynthia L. Sullivan, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We believe that these next-generation bispecific antibodies may contain the therapeutic properties of both CD20 and CD22 antibodies in a single construct, thus avoiding administration and costs of two antibodies that appear to show complementary and enhanced activity when combined," Ms. Sullivan further remarked.
Immunomedics is a New Jersey-based biopharmaceutical company primarily focused on the development of monoclonal antibody-based products for the targeted treatment of cancer, autoimmune and other serious diseases. We have developed a number of advanced proprietary technologies that allow us to create humanized antibodies that can be used either alone in unlabeled or "naked" form, or conjugated with radioactive isotopes, chemotherapeutics, cytokines or toxins, in each case to create highly targeted agents. Using these technologies, we have built a pipeline of therapeutic product candidates that utilize several different mechanisms of action. We also have a majority ownership in IBC Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which is developing a novel DOCK-AND-LOCK™ (DNL™) method with us for making fusion proteins and multifunctional antibodies, and a new method of delivering imaging and therapeutic agents selectively to disease, especially different solid cancers (colorectal, lung, pancreas, etc.), by proprietary, antibody-based, pretargeting methods. We believe that our portfolio of intellectual property, which includes approximately 215 active patents in the United States and more than 400 foreign patents, protects our product candidates and technologies. For additional information on us, please visit our website at www.immunomedics.com. The information on our website does not, however, form a part of this press release.
This release, in addition to historical information, may contain forward-looking statements made pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements, including statements regarding clinical trials, out-licensing arrangements (including the timing and amount of contingent payments), forecasts of future operating results, potential collaborations, and capital raising activities, involve significant risks and uncertainties and actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied herein. Factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to, risks associated with any cash payment that the Company might receive in connection with a sublicense involving a third party and UCB, which is not within the Company's control, new product development (including clinical trials outcome and regulatory requirements/actions), our dependence on our licensing partners for the further development of epratuzumab and veltuzumab for non-cancer indications, competitive risks to marketed products and availability of required financing and other sources of funds on acceptable terms, if at all, as well as the risks discussed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company is not under any obligation, and the Company expressly disclaims any obligation, to update or alter any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
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