Moleculin Comments on Recent FDA Drug Approvals for Acute Myeloid Leukemia
HOUSTON, TX–(Marketwired – August 09, 2017) – Moleculin Biotech, Inc., (MBRX) (“Moleculin” or the “Company”), a preclinical pharmaceutical company focused on the development of anti-cancer drug candidates, some of which are based on license agreements with The University of Texas System on behalf of the MD Anderson Cancer Center, today commented on several recent FDA approvals for new drugs for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
Walter Klemp, CEO of Moleculin commented: “the recent approvals of three new drugs (Rydapt, Vyxeos and Idhifa) for the treatment of AML are exciting, since they provide additional options for treatments in defined subpopulations, and because they help underscore the magnitude of the potential opportunity for Annamycin, which we will be studying for relapsed or refractory AML. With regard to AML, Rydapt is approved only for patients with a specific gene mutation, and for use in combination with the standard of care chemotherapy. Vyxeos is approved as an option to the standard of care, but only for specific AML patients, namely those with newly-diagnosed therapy-related acute myeloid leukemia (t-AML) or AML with myelodysplasia-related changes (AML-MRC). Jazz Pharmaceuticals purchased this drug in their $1.5 billion acquisition of Celator Pharmaceuticals.
Mr. Klemp continued: “although FDA approval of both of those drugs was based on overall survival comparisons with a standard of care, Idhifa was approved based on an accelerated clinical trial design that showed a 19% response rate in patients with relapsed or refractory AML and IDH2 mutation. What’s interesting is that Idhifa was approved with a single Phase 1/2 clinical trial based on response rate, not overall survival, and a relatively low response rate at that. Also, the patient population for which it is approved represents only 13% of all AML patients. We look forward to working with FDA on a similar approach for Annamycin — reliance on response rate in an accelerated path — but for a larger population of AML patients.”
“While these new drugs make valuable incremental improvements in AML therapy,” concluded Mr. Klemp, “most AML patients will still fail to respond to (or relapse from) initial therapy; therefore, our initial clinical development plan will attempt to address the significant unmet need of patients who relapse from, or are refractory to, initial therapy. We also believe that, if Annamycin can demonstrate superior efficacy and safety to the current standard of care, the drug may be able to fill major areas for first-line AML treatment. In the meantime, these transactions serve to remind us of the opportunity for our company if Annamycin shows significant activity in our planned clinical trials.”
About Moleculin Biotech, Inc.
Moleculin Biotech, Inc. is a preclinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development of anti-cancer drug candidates, some of which are based on discoveries made at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Our lead product candidate is Annamycin, an anthracycline being studied for the treatment of relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia, more commonly referred to as AML. We also have two preclinical small molecule portfolios, one of which is focused on the modulation of hard-to-target tumor cell signaling mechanisms and the recruitment of the patient’s own immune system. The other portfolio targets the metabolism of tumors.
For more information about the Company, please visit http://www.moleculin.com.
Some of the statements in this release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, without limitation, the ability of Annamycin to enter into a clinical trial for and show activity in patients with AML and the ability of Annamycin to qualify for accelerated approval. These statements relate to future events, future expectations, plans and prospects. Although Moleculin Biotech believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable as of the date made, expectations may prove to have been materially different from the results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Moleculin Biotech has attempted to identify forward-looking statements by terminology including ”believes,” ”estimates,” ”anticipates,” ”expects,” ”plans,” ”projects,” ”intends,” ”potential,” ”may,” ”could,” ”might,” ”will,” ”should,” ”approximately” or other words that convey uncertainty of future events or outcomes to identify these forward-looking statements. These statements are only predictions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors, including those discussed under Item 1A. “Risk Factors” in our most recently filed Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and updated from time to time in our Form 10-Q filings and in our other public filings with the SEC. Any forward-looking statements contained in this release speak only as of its date. We undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this release to reflect events or circumstances occurring after its date or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.