Dendreon Sells New Jersey Immunotherapy Manufacturing Facility
Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ: DNDN) today announced the sale of its immunotherapy manufacturing facility (IMF) based in Morris Plains, New Jersey, to Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation for $43 million in cash.
“This agreement represents a positive outcome for Dendreon, our shareholders and New Jersey,” said John H. Johnson, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Dendreon. “Dendreon continues to make progress in improving our financial strength, and this transaction is aligned with that goal as we work to build value for our shareholders. We are also pleased that approximately 100 of the existing employees at the facility will have the opportunity to retain their jobs and work for Novartis as the company builds out its immunotherapy operations and develops new treatments for patients.”
Dendreon's Morris Plains, New Jersey, facility is a 173,100 square foot state-of-the-art IMF, featuring revolutionary capabilities to manufacture PROVENGE® (sipuleucel-T), the first autologous cellular immunotherapy to receive U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for the treatment of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic castrate resistant prostate cancer. Earlier this year, Dendreon announced its intent to wind down the manufacturing of PROVENGE® at the Morris Plains facility in conjunction with a strategic restructuring plan designed to accelerate the Company's path to profitability and future growth.
“Activated Cellular Immunotherapy offers the potential to treat a variety of diseases in a revolutionary way. We are pleased that Novartis has selected our facility to advance and accelerate their work in this exciting and emerging field,” said Christine Mikail, executive vice president, corporate development at Dendreon.
PROVENGE® Indication and Important Safety Information
PROVENGE® is an autologous cellular immunotherapy indicated for the treatment of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic castrate resistant (hormone refractory) prostate cancer.
PROVENGE is intended solely for autologous use and is not routinely tested for transmissible infectious diseases.
The safety evaluation of PROVENGE was based on 601 prostate cancer patients in four randomized clinical trials who underwent at least one leukapheresis. The most common adverse events (incidence greater-than or equal to 15%) are chills, fatigue, fever, back pain, nausea, joint ache, and headache. Serious adverse events reported in the PROVENGE group include acute infusion reactions (occurring within 1 day of infusion) and cerebrovascular events. In controlled clinical trials, severe (Grade 3) acute infusion reactions were reported in 3.5% of patients in the PROVENGE group. Reactions included chills, fever, fatigue, asthenia, dyspnea, hypoxia, bronchospasm, dizziness, headache, hypertension, muscle ache, nausea, and vomiting. No Grade 4 or 5 acute infusion reactions were reported in patients in the PROVENGE group.
To fulfill a post marketing requirement and as a part of the company's ongoing commitment to patients, Dendreon will conduct a registry of approximately 1500 patients to further evaluate a small potential safety signal of cerebrovascular events. In four randomized clinical trials of PROVENGE in prostate cancer patients, cerebrovascular events were observed in 3.5% of patients in the PROVENGE group compared with 2.6% of patients in the control group.
For more information on PROVENGE, please see the full prescribing information at http://www.provenge.com or call 1-877-336-3736.
Dendreon Corporation is a biotechnology company whose mission is to target cancer and transform lives through the discovery, development, commercialization and manufacturing of novel therapeutics. The Company applies its expertise in antigen identification, engineering and cell processing to produce active cellular immunotherapy (ACI) product candidates designed to stimulate an immune response in a variety of tumor types. Dendreon's first product, PROVENGE® (sipuleucel-T), was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in April 2010. Dendreon is exploring the application of additional ACI product candidates and small molecules for the potential treatment of a variety of cancers. The Company is headquartered in Seattle, Washington and is traded on the NASDAQ Global Market under the symbol DNDN. For more information about the Company and its programs, visit http://www.dendreon.com/.
Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical in nature constitute "forward-looking statements." Such statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the expected benefits of the restructuring, the timing and elements of the restructuring, the timing and form of related charges, the expected annual operating expense reduction, expectations and beliefs regarding Dendreon's profitability and Dendreon's ability to achieve improved performance as a result of the restructuring, expectations regarding regulatory approval of PROVENGE in Europe, expectations regarding the presentation of clinical data, developments affecting Dendreon's business and prospects and potential revenue and earnings from product sales, and progress generally on commercialization efforts for PROVENGE. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause Dendreon's actual results to be materially different from historical results or from any results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, our inability to achieve and sustain commercial success for PROVENGE; the identification of efficacy, safety or other issues with PROVENGE; a slower than anticipated adoption by treating physicians of PROVENGE for the treatment of patients with advanced prostate cancer due to competing therapies, perceived difficulties in the treatment process, delays in obtaining reimbursement or for other reasons; any promotional limitations imposed by the FDA on our ability to commercialize and market PROVENGE; unexpected difficulties and costs associated with the rapid expansion of our operations to support the commercial launch of PROVENGE; and other factors discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of Dendreon's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2012. All forward-looking statements are qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement. Dendreon is providing this information as of the date of this release and does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this release as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.