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Jan7NanoString Technologies Enters Into Collaboration Agreement With Medivation and Astellas to Develop Novel Companion Diagnostic Test


-- NanoString Eligible to Receive up to $22 Million for Technology Access, Near-Term Milestones and Development Funding -- 

 

SAN FRANCISCO, CA and SEATTLE, WA-- (Marketwired - Jan 7, 2016) - Medivation, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDVN) and NanoString Technologies, Inc., (NASDAQ: NSTG) today announced they have entered into a collaboration, together with Astellas Pharma Inc., to pursue the translation of a novel gene expression signature algorithm from Medivation into a companion diagnostic assay using NanoString's nCounter® Dx Analysis System. Under the terms of the collaboration agreement, NanoString will be responsible for developing and validating the diagnostic test and, if the parties thereafter determine to proceed, NanoString would also be responsible for seeking regulatory approval for and commercializing the diagnostic test. NanoString is eligible to receive up to $22 million for technology access, near-term milestones and development funding, in addition to other potential undisclosed downstream payments.

 

Under the Collaboration Agreement, NanoString will modify its PAM50-based Prosigna® Breast Cancer Assay for potential use as a companion diagnostic test for enzalutamide for triple negative breast cancer. The modified test will be based upon data from a Phase 2 trial conducted by Medivation and Astellas that evaluated enzalutamide in patients with triple negative breast cancer.

 

"We are excited about the partnership with NanoString given their expertise in diagnostic development and that the Prosigna assay has regulatory clearance in the U.S. and European Union," said Amy Peterson, M.D., vice president, clinical development at Medivation. "Triple negative breast cancer has no recognized target and standard therapy is therefore cytotoxic chemotherapy. This diagnostic has the potential to identify patients with triple negative breast cancer appropriate for treatment with enzalutamide. We look forward to generating additional clinical data that validates this potential in a severely underserved patient population."

 

"We're excited to work with Medivation and Astellas to translate their discoveries and Phase 2 findings into a potential label expansion for enzalutamide with a companion diagnostic," said Brad Gray, president and chief executive officer of NanoString Technologies. "We're also pleased to have the opportunity to leverage our PAM50-based Prosigna breast cancer franchise, potentially expanding its role in informing breast cancer treatment decisions and enhancing the description of the intrinsic biology of breast cancer to aid in therapeutic treatment decisions. Furthermore, we believe this collaboration will provide additional validation of our nCounter Dx Analysis System as the platform-of-choice for development of multiplexed companion diagnostic assays."

 

XTANDI® (enzalutamide) capsules is currently approved for the treatment of metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer; it is not approved for use in women and is contraindicated in women who may become pregnant. Enzalutamide is not approved for women with advanced triple negative breast cancer. See Important Safety Information below.

 

About the Prosigna® Breast Cancer Prognostic Gene Signature Assay

 

The Prosigna Assay provides a risk category and numerical score for assessment of the risk of distant recurrence of disease at 10 years in postmenopausal women with node-negative (Stage I or II) or node-positive (Stage II), hormone receptor-positive (HR+) breast cancer. Based on the PAM50 gene signature initially discovered by Charles Perou, Ph.D. and colleagues, the Prosigna Assay is an in vitro diagnostic tool that utilizes gene expression data weighted together with clinical variables to generate a risk category and numerical score to assess a patient's risk of distant recurrence of disease. The Prosigna Assay measures gene expression levels of RNA extracted from formalin-fixed paraffin embedded (FFPE) breast tumor tissue previously diagnosed as invasive breast carcinoma. The Prosigna Assay requires minimal hands-on time and runs on NanoString's proprietary nCounter® Dx Analysis System, which offers a reproducible and cost-effective way to profile many genes simultaneously with high sensitivity and precision.

 

In the United States, the Prosigna Assay has 510K clearance and is available for diagnostic use when ordered by a physician. The Prosigna Assay has been CE-marked and is available for use by healthcare professionals in the European Union and other countries that recognize the CE Mark, as well as Canada, Israel, Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong.

 

In the U.S., the Prosigna Assay is indicated in female breast cancer patients who have undergone surgery in conjunction with locoregional treatment consistent with standard of care, either as: (1) a prognostic indicator for distant recurrence-free survival at 10 years in postmenopausal women with Hormone Receptor-Positive (HR+), lymph node-negative, Stage I or II breast cancer to be treated with adjuvant endocrine therapy alone, when used in conjunction with other clinicopathological factors or (2) a prognostic indicator for distant recurrence-free survival at 10 years in postmenopausal women with Hormone Receptor-Positive (HR+), lymph node-positive (1-3 nodes), Stage II breast cancer to be treated with adjuvant endocrine therapy alone, when used in conjunction with other clinicopathological factors. The device is not intended for patients with four or more positive nodes. For more information, please visit www.prosigna.com.

 

About Medivation Inc.

 

Medivation, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of medically innovative therapies to treat serious diseases for which there are limited treatment options. Medivation aims to transform the treatment of these diseases and offer hope to critically ill patients and their families. For more information, please visit us at http://www.medivation.com

 

Forward-Looking-Statements - Medivation

 

The statements in this press release regarding the development of a companion diagnostic and development program for enzalutamide in triple negative breast cancer are forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ substantially for a number of reasons, including, but not limited to: the translation of Medivation's novel gene expression signature to the nCounter platform may be unsuccessful; results from exploratory analysis of earlier studies investigating enzalutamide in women with triple negative breast cancer and/or the diagnostic's potential to identify patients with triple negative breast cancer appropriate for treatment with enzalutamide may not be confirmed in later, more extensive prospective studies; we may discover new safety information which may cause us to re-evaluate our development program for enzalutamide; the process of obtaining regulatory approval is uncertain, and may not be completed or may be unsuccessful; and other risks detailed in Medivation's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, including its quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2015 filed on November 6, 2015. Medivation undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements other than as required by law.

 

About NanoString Technologies, Inc.

 

NanoString Technologies provides life science tools for translational research and molecular diagnostic products. The company's nCounter Analysis System has been employed in life sciences research since it was first introduced in 2008 and has been cited in more than 900 peer-reviewed publications. The nCounter Analysis System offers a cost-effective way to easily profile the expression of hundreds of genes, proteins, miRNAs, or copy number variations, simultaneously with high sensitivity and precision, facilitating a wide variety of basic research and translational medicine applications, including biomarker discovery and validation. The company's technology is also being applied to diagnostic use. The Prosigna® Breast Cancer Prognostic Gene Signature Assay together with the nCounter Dx Analysis System is FDA 510(k) cleared for use as a prognostic indicator for distant recurrence of breast cancer. For more information, please visit www.nanostring.com.

 

Forward-Looking Statements - NanoString

 

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include statements regarding plans for development, regulatory approval and commercialization of Prosigna as an IVD assay on the nCounter platform for Triple Negative Breast Cancer, Prosigna's potential to aid in therapeutic treatment decisions and future payments that may or may not be received by NanoString. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially and reported results should not be considered as an indication of future performance. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: risks associated with keeping pace with rapidly changing technology and customer requirements; risks regarding the company's ability to successfully develop and commercialize new products; risks that new market opportunities may not develop as quickly as expected; risks associated with competition in marketing and selling products; risks of increased regulatory requirements; as well as the other risks set forth in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof. NanoString Technologies disclaims any obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

 

The NanoString Technologies logo, NanoString, NanoString Technologies, nCounter and Prosigna are registered trademarks of NanoString Technologies, Inc.

 

About XTANDI® (enzalutamide) capsules

 

XTANDI is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC).

 

Enzalutamide Mechanism of Action

 

Enzalutamide is an androgen receptor inhibitor that acts on three different steps in the androgen receptor signaling pathway.

 

XTANDI Important Safety Information

 

Important Safety Information

 

Contraindications XTANDI is not indicated for women and is contraindicated in women who are or may become pregnant. XTANDI can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman.

 

Warnings and Precautions

 

Seizure In Study 1, conducted in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) who previously received docetaxel, seizure occurred in 0.9% of XTANDI patients and 0% of placebo patients. In Study 2, conducted in patients with chemotherapy-naive metastatic CRPC, seizure occurred in 0.1% of XTANDI patients and 0.1% of placebo patients. There is no clinical trial experience re- administering XTANDI to patients who experienced a seizure, and limited safety data are available in patients with predisposing factors for seizure. Study 1 excluded the use of concomitant medications that may lower threshold; Study 2 permitted the use of these medications. Because of the risk of seizure associated with XTANDI use, patients should be advised of the risk of engaging in any activity during which sudden loss of consciousness could cause serious harm to themselves or others. Permanently discontinue XTANDI in patients who develop a seizure during treatment.

 

Posterior Reversible Encephalopathy Syndrome (PRES) In post approval use, there have been reports of PRES in patients receiving XTANDI. PRES is a neurological disorder which can present with rapidly evolving symptoms including seizure, headache, lethargy, confusion, blindness, and other visual and neurological disturbances, with or without associated hypertension. A diagnosis of PRES requires confirmation by brain imaging, preferably MRI. Discontinue XTANDI in patients who develop PRES.

 

Adverse Reactions

 

The most common adverse reactions (= 10%) reported from two combined clinical studies that occurred more commonly (= 2% over placebo) in XTANDI patients were asthenia/fatigue, back pain, decreased appetite, constipation, arthralgia, diarrhea, hot flush, upper respiratory tract infection, peripheral edema, dyspnea, musculoskeletal pain, weight decreased, headache, hypertension, and dizziness/vertigo.

 

In Study 1, Grade 3 and higher adverse reactions were reported among 47% of XTANDI patients and 53% of placebo patients. Discontinuations due to adverse events were reported for 16% of XTANDI patients and 18% of placebo patients. In Study 2, Grade 3-4 adverse reactions were reported in 44% of XTANDI patients and 37% of placebo patients. Discontinuations due to adverse events were reported for 6% of both study groups.

 

Lab Abnormalities: Grade 1-4 neutropenia occurred in 15% of XTANDI patients (1% Grade 3-4) and 6% of placebo patients (0.5% Grade 3-4). Grade 1-4 thrombocytopenia occurred in 6% of XTANDI patients (0.3% Grade 3-4) and 5% of placebo patients (0.5% Grade 3-4). Grade 1-4 elevations in ALT occurred in 10% of XTANDI patients (0.2% Grade 3-4) and 16% of placebo patients (0.2% Grade 3-4). Grade 1-4 elevations in bilirubin occurred in 3% of XTANDI patients (0.1% Grade 3-4) and 2% of placebo patients (no Grade 3-4).

 

Infections: In Study 1, 1% of XTANDI patients compared to 0.3% of placebo patients died from infections or sepsis. In Study 2, 1 patient in each treatment group (0.1%) had an infection resulting in death.

 

Falls (including fall-related injuries), occurred in 9% of XTANDI patients and 4% of placebo patients. Falls were not associated with loss of consciousness or seizure. Fall-related injuries were more severe in XTANDI patients, and included non-pathologic fractures, joint injuries, and hematomas.

 

Hypertension occurred in 11% of XTANDI patients and 4% of placebo patients. No patients experienced hypertensive crisis. Medical history of hypertension was balanced between arms. Hypertension led to study discontinuation in < 1% of all patients.

 

Drug Interactions

 

Effect of Other Drugs on XTANDI Avoid strong CYP2C8 inhibitors, as they can increase the plasma exposure to XTANDI. If co-administration is necessary, reduce the dose of XTANDI.

 

Avoid strong CYP3A4 inducers as they can decrease the plasma exposure to XTANDI. If co-administration is necessary, increase the dose of XTANDI.

 

Effect of XTANDI on Other Drugs Avoid CYP3A4, CYP2C9, and CYP2C19 substrates with a narrow therapeutic index, as XTANDI may decrease the plasma exposures of these drugs. If XTANDI is co-administered with warfarin (CYP2C9 substrate), conduct additional INR monitoring.

 

Contact Information

 

Contacts:

Rick Bierly

Chief Financial Officer

(415) 543-3470

 

Anne Bowdidge

Senior Director, Investor Relations

(650) 218-6900

 

Leigh Salvo

Westwicke Partners

(415) 513-1281

leigh.salvo@westwicke.com