SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
|☒||ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934|
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020
|☐||TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934|
For the transition period from to
Commission File Number 001-36112
(Exact name of registrant)
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9704 Medical Center Drive, Rockville, Maryland 20850
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Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
|Title of each class||Trading Symbol(s)||Name of each exchange on which registered|
|Common stock, par value $0.01 per share||MGNX||Nasdaq Global Select Market|
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: None
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The aggregate market value of the registrant's common stock, par value $0.01 per share, held by non-affiliates of the registrant on June 30, 2020, the last business day of the registrant's most recently completed second fiscal quarter, was approximately $1.5 billion based on the closing price of the registrant's common stock on the Nasdaq Global Select Market on that date. Exclusion of shares held by any person should not be construed to indicate that such person possesses the power, direct or indirect, to direct or cause the direction of management or policies of the registrant, or that such person is controlled by or under common control with the registrant.
The number of shares of the registrant's common stock outstanding on February 22, 2021 was 56,258,468.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of MacroGenics, Inc.'s definitive proxy statement for the 2021 annual meeting of stockholders are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Annual Report.
ANNUAL REPORT ON FORM 10-K
TABLE OF CONTENTS
This report includes 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. Forward-looking statements include statements that may relate to our plans, objectives, goals, strategies, future events, future revenues or performance, capital expenditures, financing needs and other information that is not historical information. Many of these statements appear, in particular, under the headings "Risk Factors" and "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. Forward-looking statements can often be identified by the use of terminology such as "subject to", "believe", "anticipate", "plan", "expect", "intend", "estimate", "project", "may", "will", "should", "would", "could", "can", the negatives thereof, variations thereon and similar expressions, or by discussions of strategy.
All forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, our examination of historical operating trends, are based upon our current expectations and various assumptions. We believe there is a reasonable basis for our expectations and beliefs, but they are inherently uncertain. We may not realize our expectations, and our beliefs may not prove correct. Actual results could differ materially from those described or implied by such forward-looking statements. The following uncertainties and factors, among others (including those set forth under "Risk Factors"), could affect future performance and cause actual results to differ materially from those matters expressed in or implied by forward-looking statements:
•the severity and duration of the impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic on our business, operations, clinical programs, manufacturing, financial results and other aspects of our business;
•our plans to develop and commercialize our product candidates;
•the outcomes of our ongoing and planned clinical trials and the timing of those outcomes, including when clinical trials will be initiated or completed, and when data will be reported or regulatory filings will be made;
•the timing of and our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approvals for our product candidates;
•our estimates regarding expenses, future revenue, capital requirements and needs for additional financing;
•our ability to raise additional capital through the capital markets or through one or more corporate partnerships, equity offerings, debt financings, collaborations, licensing arrangements or asset sales;
•our ability to enter into new collaborations or to identify additional products or product candidates with significant commercial potential that are consistent with our commercial objectives;
•the potential benefits and future operation of our existing collaborations;
•our ability to recover the investment in our manufacturing capabilities;
•the rate and degree of market acceptance and clinical utility of our products;
•our commercialization, marketing and manufacturing capabilities and strategy;
•significant competition in our industry;
•costs of litigation and the failure to successfully defend lawsuits and other claims against us;
•economic, political and other risks associated with our international operations;
•our ability to receive research funding and achieve anticipated milestones under our collaborations;
•our ability to protect and enforce patents and other intellectual property;
•costs of compliance and our failure to comply with new and existing governmental regulations including, but not limited to, tax regulations;
•loss or retirement of key members of management;
•failure to successfully execute our growth strategy, including any delays in our planned future growth; and
•our failure to maintain effective internal controls.
Consequently, forward-looking statements speak only as of the date that they are made and should be regarded solely as our current plans, estimates and beliefs. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. We cannot guarantee future results, events, levels of activity, performance or achievements. Except as required by law, we do not undertake and specifically decline any obligation to update, republish or revise forward-looking statements to reflect future events or circumstances or to reflect the occurrences of unanticipated events.
ITEM 1. BUSINESS
Except as otherwise indicated herein or as the context otherwise requires, references in this annual report on Form 10-K to "MacroGenics," the "company," "we," "us" and "our" refer to MacroGenics, Inc. and its consolidated subsidiaries. “MacroGenics®, the MacroGenics logo, DART®, TRIDENT®, MARGENZATM and the phrases Breakthrough Biologics, Life-Changing Medicines® and Developing Breakthrough Biologics, Life-Changing Medicines® are our trademarks. The other trademarks, trade names and service marks appearing in this report are the property of their respective owners.
We are a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative antibody-based therapeutics designed to modulate the human immune response for the treatment of cancer. In December 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved MARGENZA (margetuximab-cmkb), a human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) receptor antagonist indicated, in combination with chemotherapy, for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer who have received two or more prior anti-HER2 regimens, at least one of which was for metastatic disease. We expect to launch MARGENZA in collaboration with our commercialization partner, Eversana Life Science Services, LLC (EVERSANA), in March 2021. In addition, we have a pipeline of product candidates in human clinical testing, including eight immuno-oncology programs, that have been created primarily using our proprietary, antibody-based technology platforms. We believe our product candidates have the potential to have a meaningful effect on treating patients' unmet medical needs as monotherapy or, in some cases, in combination with other therapeutic agents.
We are developing product candidates that target various tumor-associated antigens. These include tumor-associated antigens that have been well characterized, such as HER2, which is expressed on some breast, gastroesophageal and other cancer types. Other product candidates that we are developing, with our collaboration partners in certain cases, target tumor-associated antigens against which there are currently no approved products, such as B7-H3, a molecule in the B7 family of immune regulator proteins widely expressed by several different tumor types, and ADAM9, a cell surface protein over-expressed in several solid tumor types. We are also developing molecules that target programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1), a protein that is important in the regulation of the immune system’s response to cancer. Monoclonal antibodies that inhibit PD-1 have been approved by the FDA for the treatment of numerous cancers. Our clinical pipeline includes an anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody that we have out-licensed to a partner, for which a Biologics License Application (BLA) filed with the FDA is subject to a Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) target action date of July 25, 2021, and two bispecific DART product candidates that co-engage PD-1 and LAG-3, or PD-1 and CTLA-4. We are also developing a bispecific DART molecule that engages CD3 on immune effector cells to kill CD123-expressing cancer cells in certain hematological malignancies, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
We have created our product candidates based on the following antibody-based technologies:
•Fc Optimization platform, which introduces certain mutations into the Fc domain of a monoclonal antibody in order to modulate antibody interaction with immune effector cells to enhance the killing of cancer cells;
•Multi-specific platforms, which enable us to design antibodies that can bind to two (in the case of our bispecific DART product candidates) or more distinct targets; and
•Antibody drug conjugate (ADC) platforms, which we have licensed from collaboration partners, and which link monoclonal antibodies that specifically target cytotoxins to cancer cells that are designed to trigger cell death in the cancer cell.
Our goal is to be a fully-integrated biotechnology company leading in the discovery, development and commercialization of breakthrough antibody-based biologics for the treatment of patients with cancer.
Our Pipeline of Immuno-Oncology Product Candidates
The table below depicts the current status of our immuno-oncology product candidates that are in clinical development and for which we retain all or some commercial rights:
Margetuximab is an Fc-engineered, monoclonal antibody that targets the HER2 oncoprotein. HER2 is expressed by tumor cells in breast, gastroesophageal and other solid tumors. Similar to trastuzumab, margetuximab inhibits tumor cell proliferation, reduces shedding of the HER2 extracellular domain and mediates antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC). However, through our Fc Optimization technology, margetuximab has been engineered to enhance the engagement of the immune system. In vitro, the modified Fc region of margetuximab increases binding to the activating Fc receptor FCGR3A (CD16A) and decreases binding to the inhibitory Fc receptor FCGR2B (CD32B). These changes lead to greater in vitro ADCC and natural killer (NK) cell activation. The clinical significance of in vitro data is unknown.
In December 2020, we announced that the FDA approved MARGENZA (margetuximab-cmkb), in combination with chemotherapy, for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer who have received two or more prior anti-HER2 regimens, at least one of which was for metastatic disease. MARGENZA is the first product approved from our promising pipeline. The approval was based on safety and efficacy results from the pivotal Phase 3 SOPHIA trial, as described below. We expect to launch MARGENZA in March of 2021.
Margetuximab is being evaluated in combination with checkpoint blockade in the Phase 2/3 MAHOGANY trial for the treatment of patients with HER2-positive gastroesophageal cancer, and in combination with tebotelimab (our PD-1 × LAG-3 bispecific DART molecule) in various HER2-positive tumors. We are partnered with Zai Lab for the development and commercialization of margetuximab in Greater China.
HER2-positive Breast Cancer.
HER2 is a protein found on the surface of some cancer cells that promotes growth and is associated with aggressive disease and poor prognosis. Approximately 15-20% of breast cancer cases are HER2-positive, representing approximately 45,000 new cases annually in the U.S. according to the American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Facts & Figures 2019-2020. Monoclonal antibody-based therapies targeting HER2 have greatly improved outcomes of patients with HER2-positive breast cancer and are now standard of care in both early- and late-stage disease. Ongoing HER2 blockade is recommended for patients who have relapsed or refractory HER2-positive disease; after progression occurs during treatment with other HER2-directed therapies, the need for additional agents in later lines remains.
The FDA approval of MARGENZA was based on safety and efficacy results from the SOPHIA study, a randomized, open-label Phase 3 clinical trial evaluating MARGENZA plus chemotherapy compared to trastuzumab plus chemotherapy in patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer, who have previously been treated with anti-HER2-targeted therapies. All study patients had previously received trastuzumab; all but one patient had previously received pertuzumab, and 91% had previously received ado-trastuzumab emtansine, or T-DM1.
The study enrolled 536 patients who were randomized 1:1 to receive either MARGENZA (n=266) given intravenously at 15 mg/kg every three weeks or trastuzumab (n=270) given intravenously at 6 mg/kg (or 8 mg/kg for loading dose) every three weeks in combination with one of four chemotherapy agents (capecitabine, eribulin, gemcitabine or vinorelbine) given at the standard doses. Intent-to-treat progression-free survival (PFS) analysis occurred after 265 PFS events.
The primary endpoint of the study was PFS, determined by blinded, centrally-reviewed radiological review, followed by a second sequential endpoint of overall survival (OS). Additional key secondary endpoints are PFS by investigator assessment, objective response rate (ORR) and duration of response. Tertiary endpoints include ORR by investigator assessment and safety. PFS and ORR were assessed according to Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors version 1.1 (RECIST).
The SOPHIA study showed a statistically significant 24% reduction in the risk of disease progression or death with MARGENZA plus chemotherapy compared with trastuzumab plus chemotherapy (hazard ratio [HR]=0.76; 95% CI, 0.59-0.98; P=0.033; median PFS 5.8 vs 4.9 months). The objective response rate for MARGENZA plus chemotherapy was 22% and for trastuzumab plus chemotherapy was 16%. The final OS analysis is expected in the second half of 2021.
Adverse reactions occurring in greater than twenty percent of patients with MARGENZA in combination with chemotherapy were fatigue/asthenia (57%), nausea (33%), diarrhea (25%), and vomiting (21%). The MARGENZA U.S. Prescribing Information has a BOXED WARNING for left ventricular dysfunction and embryo-fetal toxicity. In addition, MARGENZA can cause infusion-related reactions (IRRs). IRRs occurred in 13% of patients treated with MARGENZA, with the majority reported as Grade 2 or less. Grade 3 IRRs occurred in 1.5% of patients.
Cancer of the stomach, also called gastric cancer (GC), and cancer of the gastroesophageal junction (GEJ), which is where the esophagus joins the stomach, are collectively referred to as gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma, which is the third leading cause of cancer death worldwide according to the World Health Organization in 2020. Both GC and GEJ cancer are often diagnosed at an advanced stage and therefore have very poor prognosis, with a 5-year survival of 5-20%. Chemotherapy is the standard of care for first-line therapy and may be combined with trastuzumab for the approximately 20% of patients whose tumors are HER2-positive.
We are evaluating the combination of margetuximab plus PD-1 checkpoint blockade as a chemotherapy-free regimen in patients with advanced HER2-positive GC or GEJ cancer in two separate clinical studies. We believe that combining checkpoint blockade and margetuximab may create synergistic anti-tumor activity through enhanced tumor-specific T-cell immunity.
In July 2020, results were published in Lancet Oncology from our Phase 2 study of margetuximab plus pembrolizumab as a chemotherapy-free regimen for patients with advanced HER2-positive gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma (GEA) who have previously been treated with chemotherapy and trastuzumab. The Phase 2 study enrolled patients with GC or GEJ cancer whose tumors were IHC3-positive or IHC2-positive/FISH-positive at diagnosis. Enrollment was regardless of PD-L1 expression status, which was subsequently determined from available archived tumor tissue. Safety and activity analyses were based on data from a July 10, 2019, data cutoff.
Tolerability of margetuximab and pembrolizumab was acceptable in patients treated in this study. Grade 3 or higher treatment-related adverse events (TRAEs) were reported in 20% of patients, with anemia (4%) and IRRs (3%) being the most common. No treatment-related deaths were reported.
In this study, patients who had received margetuximab plus pembrolizumab at the recommended Phase 2 dose of 15 mg/kg every three weeks were evaluable for response. In this overall population, the ORR was 18% (17/92 patients), including complete responses and partial responses. The disease control rate (DCR), which includes complete responses, partial responses, and stable disease, was 53% (49/92 patients). Median PFS was 2.7 months (95% CI 1.6–4.3) and median OS was 12.5 months (95% CI 9.1–14.1).
Activity of margetuximab and anti-PD-1 in this study was more pronounced in key biomarker-positive subgroups. The most pronounced benefit was observed in patients whose tumors had high HER2 expression at diagnosis (HER2 IHC3-positive) and were PD-L1-positive. In this double-positive subgroup, the ORR was 44% (11/25 patients) and the DCR was 72% (18/25 patients). Median PFS was 4.8 months (95% CI 1.6–13.9) and median OS was 20.5 months (95% CI 8.1–NR).
Patients with initial HER2-positive GEA may lose HER2 expression after trastuzumab-based therapy. In this second-line study, HER2 amplification was not detectable in circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) in 42% of patients who were tested, suggesting loss of HER2 following prior trastuzumab and before treatment with margetuximab and pembrolizumab. The presence of HER2 amplification in ctDNA was associated with better response rates in this study. HER2amp-positive/HER2 IHC3-positive/PD-L1-positive ORR was 60% (9/15 patients) and DCR was 80% (12/15 patients).
Consistent with prior studies of margetuximab in other tumor types, correlative analyses of samples from GEA patients treated in the study showed an increase in anti-HER2 specific T-cell immunity, suggesting the potential for engagement of both innate and adaptive immune responses.
Based on these results in second-line patients who were refractory to trastuzumab, in September 2019, we initiated the MAHOGANY study, a Phase 2/3 registration-directed clinical trial to evaluate, in Module A, margetuximab in combination with retifanlimab, an anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody, in patients with tumors that are both HER2 IHC3-positive and PD-L1 positive. This approach is designed as a chemotherapy-free regimen that engages both innate and adaptive immunity for the treatment of patients with GC or GEJ cancer in the first-line setting. The primary outcome measure for efficacy in Module A is ORR per RECIST. We expect to obtain initial data in the first half of 2021 to enable a decision whether to enroll additional patients into the study to support a potential accelerated approval of the U.S. in the future.
We also plan to evaluate margetuximab with chemotherapy and retifanlimab or tebotelimab, a PD-1 × LAG-3 bispecific DART molecule, compared to standard of care therapy of trastuzumab with chemotherapy in Module B of the MAHOGANY study. In this portion of the randomized, controlled study, patients are planned to be enrolled irrespective of PD-L1 expression. The primary outcome measure for efficacy in Module B is planned to be OS.
In November 2018, we licensed the right to develop and commercialize margetuximab in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan to Zai Lab Limited (Zai Lab). Zai Lab will lead clinical development in its territory by leveraging its regulatory and clinical development expertise and broad regional network of investigators. We are prioritizing enrollment of MAHOGANY Module A in the U.S. Zai Lab initiated Module B in Greater China in 2020. In February 2020, Zai Lab announced that it had dosed a first patient in a registrational bridging study of margetuximab, in combination with chemotherapy, for the treatment of patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer.
The FDA has granted Orphan Drug Designation to margetuximab for the treatment of gastric and gastroesophageal junction cancer.
Flotetuzumab is an investigational bispecific, humanized DART molecule that recognizes both CD123 and CD3. CD123, the interleukin-3 receptor alpha chain, has been reported to be over-expressed on cancer cells in a wide range of hematological malignancies, including AML and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). CD3 is expressed on immune effector cells, such as T cells. Flotetuzumab is designed to engage and redirect T cells to kill CD123-expressing malignant cells. The molecule is being evaluated in a clinical study of up to 200 AML patients who are refractory to induction therapy or relapse within six months of a complete remission (CR). This study is intended to support registration in the U.S. The FDA has granted Orphan Drug Designation to flotetuzumab for the treatment of AML.
Acute Myeloid Leukemia
AML is a hematopoietic malignancy characterized by uncontrolled clonal proliferation of neoplastic myeloid precursors and differentiation arrest that prevent normal bone marrow hematopoiesis. AML is thought to arise in and be perpetuated by a small population of leukemic stem cells (LSCs) that generally resist conventional chemotherapeutic agents. LSCs are characterized by high levels of CD123 expression that is low or absent in the corresponding hematopoietic progenitors and stem cell populations in normal human bone marrow. Flotetuzumab was designed to redirect T lymphocytes, specialized white blood cells of the human immune system, to kill CD123-expressing cells. To achieve this, the DART molecule combines an arm that recognizes CD123 on the target cells with a portion of an antibody recognizing CD3, an activating protein expressed by T cells.
Approximately 20,000 new cases of AML were diagnosed in the U.S. in 2020, with a median age of 68 years at diagnosis, according to the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation represents the only treatment modality with reliable curative potential. Approximately 40-50% of newly diagnosed patients fail to achieve a CR with intensive induction therapy (primary induction failure, or PIF) or experience disease recurrence after an initial remission of short duration of less than six months (early relapsed, or ER6). Only a
very small number of these patients are expected to respond to salvage therapy. While some patients may be eligible to receive new targeted agents that have been approved for the treatment of first-line or relapsed/refractory AML in recent years, approximately 50% of patients have no known targetable mutations.
In December 2020, we presented data from our ongoing open-label Phase 1/2 dose expansion study of flotetuzumab in 44 relapsed/refractory patients having either primary induction failure or early relapsed AML. Of these patients, 72.7% (32 of 44) had adverse risk cytogenetics by ELN Risk Stratification (2017). Patients were treated with flotetuzumab at the recommended Phase 2 dose of 500 ng/kg/day by continuous infusion, following step-up, daily dose escalation during the first week. Data were reported as of the cut-off date of November 10, 2020. The study is ongoing, with a total of up to 200 patients planned for enrollment for registrational purposes.
The median time to achieve a response to flotetuzumab in the study was one cycle (range of 1-3 cycles). Responses, including CR, CRh (CR with partial hematological recovery) and CRi (CR with incomplete hematological improvement) per a modified International Working Group (IWG) Response Criteria for AML, are summarized in the table below.
|CR/CRh||25.0% (11)||33.3% (9)||11.8% (2)|
|CR/CRh/CRi||31.8% (14)||37.0% (10)||23.5% (4)|
|HSCT||57.1% (8/14)||70.0% (7/10)||25.0% (1/4)|
|Median Duration of Response||8.13 months (n=14)||15.2 months (n=10)||2.4 months (n=4)|
Eight of 14 responders (57%) received allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) as consolidation therapy and remained in remission after 6 to 21 months (median not reached). Overall, among the PIF/ER6 patients who achieved remission (CR, CRh or CRi), the median duration of response was 8.13 months, with a median overall survival of 10.7 months. Within the PIF/ER6 population, five of ten patients with TP53-mutated AML, a mutation associated with very poor prognosis, achieved CR/CRh/CRi responses, three of whom went on to receive HSCT.
The most common TRAE was infusion-related reaction/cytokine release syndrome (IRR/CRS). While all patients experienced some levels of IRR/CRS, most events were of short duration and mild to moderate (Grade 1 or 2) in severity, with only a single Grade 3 event reported.
Retifanlimab is an investigational monoclonal antibody targeting PD-1. Marketed antibodies targeting this checkpoint molecule have shown clinical efficacy in the treatment of various tumors by releasing the "brakes" of the immune system and help to restore the immune system's ability to detect and kill tumor cells. In 2017, we licensed retifanlimab to Incyte Corporation (Incyte) under a global collaboration and license agreement, although we retain the right to develop the molecule in combination with product candidates from our pipeline. In January 2021, Incyte announced that the FDA had accepted for Priority Review its BLA for retifanlimab as a potential treatment for adult patients with locally advanced or metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the anal canal (SCAC) who have progressed on, or who are intolerant of, platinum-based chemotherapy. The PDUFA target action date for retifanlimab is July 25, 2021. In addition, Incyte has stated it is pursuing development of retifanlimab as monotherapy in potentially registration-enabling studies in patients with MSI-high endometrial cancer and Merkel cell carcinoma.
In 2020, Incyte initiated two Phase 3 studies of retifanlimab in combination with chemotherapy in patients with advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and in patients with metastatic SCAC, known as POD1UM-304 and POD1UM-303, respectively. Incyte is also pursuing development of retifanlimab in combination with multiple product candidates from its pipeline.
We are currently evaluating retifanlimab in combination with margetuximab in a potentially registration-enabling study of patients with HER2-positive GC and GEJ. We plan to initiate a study of retifanlimab in combination with enoblituzumab, an investigational Fc-engineered, anti-B7-H3 mAb, in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN).
Enoblituzumab is an investigational monoclonal antibody that targets B7-H3 that has been engineered using our Fc Optimization platform. B7-H3 (CD276) belongs to the B7 family of immune regulator proteins that is widely expressed by different tumor types and may play a key role in regulating the immune response to various cancers. There are no currently approved therapeutic agents directed against B7-H3.
We conducted a Phase 1b/2 clinical study of enoblituzumab and pembrolizumab, an anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody, to evaluate this combination in patients with B7-H3-expressing melanoma, SCCHN, NSCLC and urothelial cancer. The combination of enoblituzumab and immune checkpoint blockade is designed to engage innate and adaptive immunity to enhance tumor cell killing. A total of 133 patients were treated in the study; the data cut-off date was October 12, 2018.
As presented in November 2018, in the SCCHN dose expansion cohort, confirmed partial responses were observed in 6 of 18 (33%) of patients evaluable for response who had not previously received anti-PD-1 or anti-PD-L1 therapy. For the subset of patients with B7-H3 tumor expression ≥ 10%, 6 of 15 (40%) had confirmed partial responses. ORRs ranging from 13% to 16% have previously been reported in SCCHN patients treated with anti-PD-1 agents alone. The combination of enoblituzumab and an anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody demonstrated acceptable tolerability, with any adverse event ≥ Grade 3 occurring in 27.1% of patients as of the October 12, 2018 data cut-off date. The rate of immune-related adverse events experienced in the trial was comparable to that historically observed by others in patients who received pembrolizumab as monotherapy.
To further inform the development of enoblituzumab, we expect to initiate a Phase 2 study of this agent in patients with relapsed or metastatic SCCHN not curable by local therapy in the first quarter of 2021. This trial will include enoblituzumab in a chemotherapy-free regimen in combination with either retifanlimab in patients who are PD-L1 positive or with tebotelimab in patients who are PD-L1 negative.
In July 2019, we licensed the right to develop and commercialize enoblituzumab in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan to I-Mab Biopharma (I-Mab). I-Mab plans to both lead regional studies in its territories as well as participate in global studies conducted by us.
Tebotelimab is an investigational, first-in-class bispecific, tetravalent DART molecule targeting PD-1 and LAG-3, or lymphocyte-activation gene 3. We have engineered tebotelimab to concomitantly or independently bind to PD-1 and LAG-3 and disrupt these non-redundant inhibitory pathways to further restore exhausted T-cell function. Tebotelimab is being evaluated in a Phase 1 dose expansion study as both monotherapy in several tumor types as well as in combination with margetuximab in HER2-positive neoplasms.
In May 2020, initial data was presented from a Phase 1 study in which 53 patients with advanced tumors were treated with tebotelimab given intravenously in cohorts of escalating flat doses of 1-1200 mg every two weeks. A maximum tolerated dose was not identified. A flat dose of 600 mg every two weeks was selected for tumor-specific expansion cohorts. At the April 25, 2020 data cut-off, 205 patients with advanced solid and hematologic neoplasms had been treated with tebotelimab monotherapy in the ongoing dose-expansion part of the study, of which 152 were evaluable for response. Anti-tumor activity was assessed by RECIST.
Anti-tumor activity of tebotelimab as monotherapy was observed in evaluable patients across several of the tumor types in the selected dose expansion cohorts. ORRs, including both confirmed and unconfirmed responses, and DCR, comprising both confirmed objective responses and stable disease, were observed as follows: triple negative breast cancer (17% ORR, 4 of 23 patients; 39% DCR, 9 of 23 patients), epithelial ovarian cancer (9% ORR, 2 of 23 patients; 52% DCR, 12 of 23 patients) and NSCLC (checkpoint inhibitor naïve: 21% ORR, 3 of 14 patients; 64% DCR, 9 of 14 patients; and post anti-PD-1: 13% ORR, 2 of 15 patients; 53% DCR, 8 of 15 patients). Response to tebotelimab monotherapy was associated with LAG-3 expression and an IFN-γ gene signature at baseline. The overall safety profile of tebotelimab in the Phase 1 study, including the incidence of immune-mediated adverse events, appeared generally consistent with anti-PD-1 antibody monotherapy with respect to event type and frequency.
Immune effector cell activation and LAG-3, PD-1 and PD-L1 expression has been shown to be enhanced in vitro by Fc-engineered margetuximab. An expansion cohort of patients with advanced HER2-positive tumors is being treated with margetuximab plus tebotelimab to evaluate whether Fc-engineering can enhance tumor responsiveness to checkpoint blockade and improve clinical outcomes in patients. In November 2020, updated data was presented from the ongoing combination study of tebotelimab and margetuximab in patients with advanced HER2-positive neoplasms. In this study, 41 patients had been enrolled. As of the October 5, 2020 data cut-off, there were 28 response-evaluable patients. Evidence of antitumor activity was observed among refractory patients with various HER2-positive tumor types, including eight objective responses (six
confirmed) observed in multiple advanced HER2-positive tumor types. The ORR (including unconfirmed responses) was 28.6%, while 64.3% of response-evaluable patients experienced a decrease in target lesion tumor burden. The duration of response for confirmed responders was 4.21–8.97 months, with three patients remaining on treatment as of the data cut-off. Of particular interest, a majority of responding patients had a baseline PD-L1 combined positive score (CPS) ≤ 1. All responding patients carried the less favorable CD16A-158F allotype (i.e., V/F or F/F). Evaluation of baseline LAG-3 and PD-1 mRNA expression and potential association with clinical response analyses are ongoing, and will be important for defining patient enrichment biomarker strategies for further development. The combination of tebotelimab and margetuximab was generally well tolerated, with a safety profile consistent with that of tebotelimab monotherapy. Enrollment in HER2-positive tumor-specific cohorts is ongoing.
In December 2020, data was presented from the ongoing tebotelimab Phase 1 dose expansion study in patients with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). LAG-3 has been shown to be highly expressed in DLBCL and has emerged as a therapeutic target of interest in this population, while PD-1-targeted therapy has yielded modest efficacy. There remains significant unmet need for patients with relapsed/refractory (R/R) DLBCL. In this study, 20 DLBCL patients were enrolled, half of whom were chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy experienced. As of the October 23, 2020 data cut-off, there were 13 response-evaluable patients. A preliminary ORR of 53.8% (7 of 13 patients) was observed, including responses in five of seven CAR T cell-naïve patients and in two of six CAR T cell experienced patients, the latter of whom both had complete responses. A preliminary duration of response of up to 168 days was observed, with six of seven ongoing responses as of the cut-off date. In the study, baseline LAG-3 expression appeared to associate with clinical response, with additional analyses ongoing. Tebotelimab was generally well-tolerated among heavily pre-treated R/R DLBCL patients, with manageable infusion-related reactions and no evidence of tumor lysis syndrome. The most common TRAE was pyrexia, which occurred in three (15%) patients. A single Grade 3 TRAE of anemia was observed.
We expect to provide clinical updates on tebotelimab in 2021, including future development plans.
Under our November 2018 license and collaboration agreement with Zai Lab, we also licensed to them the right to develop and commercialize tebotelimab in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. In February 2020, Zai Lab dosed the first patient with niraparib, a PARP (poly [ADP-ribose] polymerase) inhibitor, in the Phase 1b proof-of-concept, China-only study, in combination with tebotelimab. In April 2020, Zai Lab initiated a study of tebotelimab in combination with brivanib in a Phase 1 proof-of-concept China-only dose escalation and expansion trial in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The dose escalation phase to determine the recommended Phase 2 dose of tebotelimab as monotherapy and in combination with brivanib was completed, with related data presented in late 2020. In November 2020, Zai Lab enrolled the first patient in a Phase 1 proof-of-concept clinical trial in China of tebotelimab as second-line therapy for melanoma patients after treatment with checkpoint inhibitors.
MGC018 is an investigational ADC with a cleavable peptide linker designed to deliver a DNA-alkylating duocarmycin payload to dividing and non-dividing cells on solid tumors that express B7-H3. The underlying ADC technology was licensed from Byondis B.V. (formerly Synthon Biopharmaceuticals). We are conducting a Phase 1 dose expansion study of MGC018.
In May 2020, data from the dose escalation study of MGC018 was presented. At the May 6, 2020 data cut-off, 23 evaluable patients with advanced solid tumors had been enrolled in four dose escalation cohorts of 0.5 mg/kg to 3 mg/kg given intravenously every three weeks. Treatment is ongoing in an expanded fifth cohort of patients at 4 mg/kg every three weeks.
Preliminary evidence of anti-tumor activity by MGC018 has been observed, particularly in patients with advanced metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). Reductions in PSA levels of ≥ 50% were observed in five of seven mCRPC patients treated, including one with substantial regression of bone disease. Six mCRPC patients had bone only disease, and one patient with measurable peripheral disease had a 29% reduction in target lesions that did not qualify as a response per RECIST. Four PSA responders remained on therapy as of the data cut-off. Patients with mCRPC had received a median of four therapies prior to MGC018, including taxane chemotherapy (six patients) and next-generation hormonal agents (six patients were treated with both abiraterone and enzalutamide, and one with abiraterone only).
The safety profile of MGC018, which includes hematologic and skin toxicities, has been generally manageable to date. At least one TRAE occurred in 22 of 23 patients (96%), including Grade ≥ 3 reported in 14 of 23 patients (61%). Three treatment-related serious adverse events occurred in one patient each: pneumonitis in a patient with concurrent bacterial pneumonia; non-infectious gastroenteritis; and stasis dermatitis in a patient with chronic venous insufficiency. One dose-limiting toxicity of Grade 4 neutropenia that resolved to baseline was reported. No febrile neutropenia was observed.
We commenced the Phase 1 dose expansion study of MGC018 in patients with mCRPC, triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) and NSCLC in the fourth quarter of 2020 and expects to provide an update on this study in mid-2021.
Approved monoclonal antibodies that target the immune checkpoints PD-1 and CTLA-4, or cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated protein 4, have shown enhanced clinical antitumor activity when given in combination in various cancers, including renal cell carcinoma and NSCLC with high tumor mutational burden. MGD019 is an investigational, bispecific tetravalent DART molecule designed to enable simultaneous and/or independent blockade of PD-1 and CTLA-4, with potentially enhanced CTLA-4 blockade on T cells co-expressing these immune checkpoint molecules.
In September 2020, data from the Phase 1 dose escalation study of MGD019 were reported. Forty-three patients were enrolled in the study within a dose range of 0.03 – 10.0 mg/kg, administered every three weeks initially, in a population of heavily pre-treated patients representing a broad range of different types (23) of solid tumors. A total of 28 patients were treated at doses ≥ 3.0 mg/kg administered every three weeks initially. Of the 18 evaluable patients who received doses ≥ 3.0 mg/kg as of the July 21, 2020 cut-off date, four objective responses were reported, including a confirmed complete response in mCRPC, confirmed partial responses in microsatellite stable colorectal cancer (MSS CRC) and metastatic type AB thymoma, and an unconfirmed partial response in serous fallopian tube carcinoma. MGD019 was well-tolerated in patients who received less than 10 mg/kg. The most common TRAEs observed were pruritus (23.3%), arthralgia (18.6%), fatigue (18.6%), rash (18.6%), nausea (16.3%) and infusion-related reaction (16.3%). Several Grade 3 adverse events were observed at the 10.0 mg/kg level; however, none were considered dose limiting.
In this study, full and sustained peripheral PD-1 blockade was evident at doses ≥ 1.0 mg/kg over a 3-week dosing interval. In addition, dose-dependent upregulation of the inducible costimulator (ICOS) molecule was evident in treated patients, including those who responded to MGD019 therapy. This is consistent with an observation previously reported in the literature that anti-CTLA-4 therapy increases the frequency of CD4 T cells expressing the ICOS molecule.
We are currently evaluating MGD019 in a Phase 1 dose expansion study initially in patients with MSS CRC and checkpoint-naive NSCLC at the recommended Phase 2 dose of 6.0 mg/kg and expect to provide an update on this study in mid-2021.
IMGC936 is an ADC that targets ADAM9, a cell surface protein over-expressed in several solid tumor types. IMGC936 is being advanced under a co-development agreement with ImmunoGen, Inc. (ImmunoGen). Under the 50/50 collaboration, ImmunoGen is leading clinical development and the Phase 1 dose escalation study is currently enrolling patients with select advanced solid tumors.
Other Clinical Product Candidates (Non-Immuno-Oncology)
In addition to our immuno-oncology programs described above, through collaborations and government contracts, we retain economic rights to other clinical product candidates as described below.
We are developing MGD014 under a contract awarded to us in September 2015 by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (contract number HHSN272201500032C). This DART molecule was designed to target the envelope protein of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infected cells (Env) and T cells, via their CD3 components, to redirect the immune system's T cells to kill HIV-infected cells. MGD014 could be used independently or become a key part of a "shock-and-kill" strategy in conjunction with HIV latency-reversing agents currently under development. MGD014 is our first clinical DART molecule designed to target virus-infected cells. A Phase 1 dose escalation study of MGD014 is ongoing.
In 2018, we entered into an asset purchase agreement with Provention Bio, Inc. (Provention) pursuant to which they acquired our interest in teplizumab, a monoclonal antibody we had been developing for the treatment of type 1 diabetes. Teplizumab has been granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation by the FDA and PRIority MEdicines (PRIME) designation by the European Medicines Agency. In January 2021, Provention announced that a BLA for teplizumab for the delay or prevention of clinical type 1 diabetes (T1D) in at-risk individuals had been filed by the FDA, which granted Provention's request for Priority Review and assigned a PDUFA target action date of July 2, 2021. Provention has disclosed that the FDA indicated that
it is planning to hold an advisory committee meeting, tentatively scheduled for May 27, 2021. Provention is currently also evaluating teplizumab in patients with newly diagnosed insulin-dependent T1D in the Phase 3 PROTECT study.
In 2018, we also entered into a license agreement with Provention pursuant to which we granted them exclusive global rights for the purpose of developing and commercializing PRV-3279 (previously known as MGD010), a CD32B × CD79B DART molecule being developed for the treatment of autoimmune indications. Provention is initially developing PRV-3279 for the interception of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), a chronic autoimmune disorder characterized by an abnormal overactivation of B cells and subsequent pathologic production of auto-antibodies. Provention has disclosed that it believes PRV-3279 also has the potential to prevent or reduce the immunogenicity of biotherapeutics, including but not limited to gene therapy vectors and transgenes.
Our Therapeutic Area Focus: Cancer
Cancer is a broad group of diseases in which cells divide and grow in an uncontrolled manner, forming malignancies that can invade other parts of the body. In normal tissues, the rates of new cell growth and cell death are tightly regulated and kept in balance. In cancerous tissues, this balance is disrupted as a result of mutations, causing unregulated cell division or proliferation that leads to tumor formation and growth. While tumors can grow slowly or rapidly, the dividing cells will nevertheless accumulate, and the normal organization of the tissue will become disrupted. Cancers subsequently can spread throughout the body by processes known as invasion and metastasis. Once cancer spreads to sites beyond the primary tumor, it generally becomes more difficult to treat and may be incurable. Cancer cells that arise in the lymphatic system and bone marrow are referred to as hematological malignancies. Cancer cells that arise in other tissues or organs are referred to as solid tumors. Cancer can arise in virtually any part of the body, with the most common types arising in the prostate gland, breast, lung, colon and skin. Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States, exceeded only by heart disease. An increasing number of people are also living longer with cancer.
We believe that our platforms position us very well strategically to actively develop approaches for the treatment of both solid tumors and hematologic malignancies.
Our Platforms and Technology Expertise
We apply our understanding of disease biology, immune-mediated mechanisms and next generation antibody technologies to design specifically targeted antibody-based product candidates based on our DART and Fc Optimization platforms. Through these platforms we have designed antibody-based product candidates that have the potential to improve on standard treatments by having one or more of the following attributes: (1) multiple specificities; (2) increased abilities to interact with the body's immune system to fight tumors; (3) capacity to bind more avidly to antigen targets: (4) increased potency; (5) reduced immunogenicity or (6) the ability to target and kill cancer cells that are resistant to standard treatments. Moreover, these technology platforms are complementary and can be combined to address the complex biology of cancer.
DART and TRIDENT Platforms: Our Proprietary Approach to Engineer Multi-Specific Antibodies
We use our DART platform to create derivatives of antibodies with the ability to bind to two distinct targets instead of a single one found in traditional monoclonal antibodies. DART product candidates are therefore bispecific. An example of a bispecific molecule from our DART platform is illustrated below:
Because cancer cells have developed ways to escape the immune system, we have created DART molecules, which are alternative antibody-like structures with more potent immune properties than the parent antibody molecules from which they are derived. The two variable regions of an antibody are mono-specific and are able to target only a single type structural component of an antigen. For many years, researchers have sought to create recombinant molecules that are capable of targeting two antigens or epitopes (i.e., specific part of an antigen bound by the antibody) within the same molecule. The challenges in creating such molecules have been the instability of the resulting bispecific molecules and their inherently short half-lives, as well as the inefficiencies in manufacturing these compounds. We believe our DART platform has overcome these engineering challenges by incorporating proprietary covalent di-sulfide linkages and particular amino acid sequences that efficiently pair the chains of the DART molecule. This is designed to provide a structure with enhanced manufacturability, long-term structural stability and the ability to tailor the half-lives of the DART molecules to their clinical needs. This engineered antibody-like protein has a compact and stable structure and enables the targeting of two different antigens with a single recombinant molecule.
The DART platform has been specifically engineered to accommodate virtually any variable region sequence with predictable expression, folding and antigen recognition. We believe our multi-specific platforms may provide a significant advantage over current biological interventions in cancer, autoimmune disorders and infectious disease by enabling a range of modalities, including those described below.
Our DART platform enables us to design multi-specific molecules that seek to exploit different mechanisms of action, including those set forth below.
•Redirected T cell activation and killing. In this version of the DART molecule, we are engaging the cancer-fighting properties of the immune effector cells, such as T lymphocytes to: (1) recognize and bind to proteins expressed on a cancer cell, or tumor associated antigens (e.g., CD123), (2) enable the recruitment of all types of cytotoxic, or cell killing, T cells, irrespective of their ability to recognize cancer cells (e.g., CD3, a common component of the T cell antigen receptor) and (3) trigger T cell activation, expansion, and cell killing mechanisms to destroy a cancer cell. The outcome is that any of the body's T cells, in theory, could be recruited to destroy a cancer cell and thus, are not limited to the small numbers of specific T cells that might have been generated in response to cancer to kill tumor cells. Furthermore, given the design of a DART molecule, since any T cell could be recruited for this killing process, relatively small amounts of a DART molecule may be required to trigger this potent immune response. Additionally, the compact structure of the DART protein makes it well suited for maintaining cell-to-cell contact, which we believe contributes to the high level of target cell killing. Our DART molecules that redirect T cells against cancer or other targets, including flotetuzumab, are manufactured using a conventional antibody platform without the complexity of having to genetically modify T cells from individual patients, as would be required by approaches such as CAR T cells. We have continued to evolve our bispecific platform with the introduction of a next-generation CD3-engaging DART technology designed to recruit, engage and activate T cells to kill tumor target cells with reduced release of pro-inflammatory cytokines. This next-generation CD3 DART platform is aimed at addressing cytokine-release syndrome, the most frequent and often dose-limiting adverse event associated with CD3-engaging molecules. We believe the next-generation CD3 DART platform could expand the therapeutic window of CD3-engaing DART molecules and further increase their potential application in oncology.
• Targeting of multiple co-inhibitory receptors or checkpoints, such as those involved in inhibiting T cell responses. The immune system generally prevents the development of autoimmune phenomena by regulating activated immune cells that have responded to non-self or foreign antigens. This negative feedback loop is triggered by the interactions of co-inhibitory receptors, or checkpoint molecules, expressed on the immune cells with ligands expressed by other cells, such as antigen-presenting cells. This phenomenon is exploited by cancer, whereby tumor cells express checkpoint ligands that block the development of an immune response against the tumor. Antibodies that block the interaction of checkpoint molecules with their ligands have been shown to significantly improve the clinical outcomes of patients with certain advanced cancers. Because of the diversity of immune checkpoint pathways, blockade of a single axis, while clinically significant, as shown in the case of the blockade of the PD-1/PD-L1 axis with pembrolizumab or nivolumab, will not benefit all patients. In fact, combinations of checkpoint inhibitors, such as nivolumab and ipilimumab, a CTLA-4 blocker, have resulted in significantly enhanced benefit compared to ipilimumab or nivolumab alone. We believe that DART molecules targeting two immunoregulatory pathways, such as two checkpoints in a single molecule, could afford the clinical benefit of the combination together with the potential for synergistic activity, as well as significant advantages in manufacturing, simplified clinical development, and enhanced patient convenience.
In addition to the ability to tailor a DART molecule's valency, we have the capacity to modify the strength by which the binding sites attach to their targets and the molecule's half-life in the blood circulation after delivery to a patient. Furthermore, when an Fc domain is coupled with a DART molecule, additional changes can be included that can modulate the DART molecule's engagement with different immune cells.
We are currently developing specific product candidates using this technology, including flotetuzumab, tebotelimab, MGD019 and MGD014 in clinical trials, as well as others in preclinical development.
We have also advanced beyond our DART platform to establish a TRIDENT platform, which reflects the continuing evolution of our multi-specific antibody-based targeting expertise. Built on the DART module, the trivalent TRIDENT platform incorporates in an Ig-like format an additional domain capable of engaging an independent antigen. With the inclusion of a third targeting arm, TRIDENT molecules enable a broader range of mechanisms of action than bispecific targeting, allowing, for instance, the engagement of multiple antigens on a single or on different cells or enabling enhanced target selectivity by
modulating the avidity of one of two antigens. Product candidates using this technology are currently in preclinical development.
Fc Optimization Platform: Our Proprietary Approach to Enhance Immune-Mediated Cancer Cell Killing
To enhance the body's immune ability, we developed our Fc Optimization platform which introduces certain mutations into the Fc region of an antibody and is able to modulate antibody interaction with immune effector cells. Such interaction enhances the body's immune ability to mediate the killing of cancer cells through ADCC.
The Fc region mediates the function of IgG antibodies by binding to different activating and inhibitory receptors, referred to as FcγRs, on immune effector cells found within the innate immune system. By engineering Fc regions to bind with an increased affinity to the activating FcγRs and with a reduced affinity to the inhibitory FcγRs, we have been able to impart a more effective immune response and improve effector functions, such as ADCC. This is another example in which small changes in antibody structure can confer improvements on normal immune processes.
We have established a proprietary platform to engineer, screen, identify and test antibodies' Fc regions with customizable activity. In particular, we have licenses to use transgenic mice that express human FcγRs. These mice can be used for in vivo testing of antibodies that incorporate Fc domain variants, including those antibodies intended for cancer therapy.
To date, we have successfully incorporated our Fc variants in two of our antibody-based molecules, margetuximab and enoblituzumab. In vitro, the modified Fc region of margetuximab increases binding to the activating Fc receptor FCGR3A (CD16A) and decreases binding to the inhibitor Fc receptor FCGR2B (CD32B). These changes lead to greater in vitro ADCC and NK cell activation. The clinical significance of in vitro data is unknown.
Throughout our company's history, we have entered into collaborations with other biopharmaceutical companies and plan to continue to do so. We enter into collaborations when there is a strategic advantage to us and when we believe the financial terms of the collaboration are favorable for meeting our short-term and long-term strategic objectives. We are not dependent upon any one of these collaborations, but in many cases we have rights to receive sales royalties and other significant financial payments if the partnered product candidates achieve certain development and sales milestones. We endeavor to establish collaborations that preserve our right to participate in future commercialization, for example by securing co-promotion or profit-sharing rights under certain circumstances.
We pursue a balanced approach between product candidates that we develop ourselves and those that we develop with our collaborators. Under our strategic collaborations to date, we have received significant non-dilutive funding and continue to have rights to additional funding upon completion of certain research, achievement of key product development milestones and royalties and other payments upon the commercial sale of products. Each of our collaborations has a unique set of terms and conditions.
We strive to protect the proprietary technologies that we believe are important to our business, including seeking and maintaining patents intended to protect, for example, the composition of matter of our product candidates, their methods of use, the technology platforms used to generate them, related technologies and/or other aspects of the inventions that are important to our business. We also rely on trade secrets, confidentiality and invention assignment agreements and careful monitoring of our
proprietary information to protect aspects of our business that are not amenable to, or that we do not consider appropriate for, patent protection.
Our success will depend significantly on our ability to obtain and maintain patent and other proprietary protection for commercially important technology, inventions and know-how related to our business. In addition, there is cost and risk to our business in defending and enforcing our patents, maintaining our licenses to use intellectual property owned by third parties and preserving the confidentiality of our trade secrets and operating without infringing the valid and enforceable patents and other proprietary rights of third parties. We also rely on know-how, continuing technological innovation and in-licensing opportunities to develop, strengthen and maintain our proprietary positions. We currently use multiple industry-standard patent monitoring systems to monitor new United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) filings for any applications by third parties that may infringe on our patents.
The patent positions of biopharmaceutical companies like us are generally uncertain and involve complex legal, scientific and factual questions. In addition, the coverage claimed in a patent application can be significantly reduced before the patent is issued, and its scope can be reinterpreted by the courts after issuance. Consequently, we do not know whether any of our product candidates will be protectable or remain protected by enforceable patents. We cannot predict whether the patent applications we are currently pursuing will issue as patents in any particular jurisdiction or whether the claims of any issued patents will provide sufficient proprietary protection from competitors. Any patents that we hold may be challenged, narrowed, circumvented or invalidated by third parties.
A third party may hold patents or other intellectual property rights that are important to or necessary for the development of our product candidates or use of our technology platforms. It may be necessary for us to use the patented or proprietary technology of third parties to commercialize our product candidates, in which case we would be required to obtain a license from these third parties on commercially reasonable terms, or our business could be harmed, possibly materially. For example, certain patents held by third parties cover Fc engineering methods and mutations in Fc regions to enhance the binding of Fc regions to Fc receptors on immune cells. Although we believe that these patents are not infringed, invalid, and unenforceable, should a court find that they cover margetuximab or enoblituzumab and we are unable to invalidate them, or if licenses for them are not available on commercially reasonable terms, our business could be harmed, perhaps materially.
Because patent applications in the United States and certain other jurisdictions can be maintained in secrecy for 18 months or potentially even longer, and because publication of discoveries in the scientific or patent literature often lags behind actual discoveries, we cannot be certain of the priority of inventions covered by pending patent applications. Moreover, we may have to participate in interference proceedings declared by the USPTO to determine priority of invention. In the ordinary course of business we participate in post-grant challenge proceedings, such as oppositions, that challenge the patentability of third party patents. Such proceedings could result in substantial cost, even if the eventual outcome is favorable to us.
Pipeline Patent Protection
As of December 31, 2020, we held 82 patents in the United States with 50 patent applications pending and 534 patents in other countries of the world with 563 patent applications pending. In addition to patents and patent applications generally providing protection for various aspects of our Fc Optimization, DART, and TRIDENT platforms, we have patent and patent applications for the composition of matter of each of our clinical pipeline product candidates and, in some cases, we also have other patents and patent application related to various aspects of the technology underlying these product candidates or their methods of use.
Patent terms may be adjusted or extended, as described in greater detail below, in certain circumstances. However, assuming no adjustments or extensions, the primary composition of matter patent for each of our clinical pipeline product candidates is expected to expire in the following timeframes:
|Product Candidate||Expiration Date|
Patent Term Extension and Reference Product Exclusivity
The Hatch-Waxman Act permits a patent term extension for FDA-approved drugs, including biological products, of up to five years beyond the expiration of the patent. The length of the patent term extension is related to the length of time the drug is under regulatory review. Patent extension cannot extend the remaining term of a patent beyond a total of 14 years from the date of product approval and only one patent applicable to an approved drug may be extended. Similar provisions are available in Europe and other jurisdictions to extend the term of a patent that covers an approved drug. In the future, if and when our pharmaceutical product candidates receive FDA approval, we have applied or expect to apply for patent term extensions on patents covering those products. We intend to seek, and are seeking, patent term extensions to our issued patents in any jurisdiction where these are available, however there is no guarantee that the applicable authorities, including the FDA in the United States, will agree with our assessment of whether such extensions should be granted, and even if granted, the length of such extensions.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended by the Healthcare and Education Affordability Reconciliation Act (collectively the ACA) created a regulatory scheme authorizing the FDA to approve biosimilars via an abbreviated licensure pathway. In many cases, this allows biosimilars to be brought to market without conducting the full suite of clinical trials typically required of originators. Under the ACA, a manufacturer may submit an application for licensure of a biologic product that is "biosimilar to" or "interchangeable with" a previously approved biological product or "reference product." The "biosimilar" application must include specific information demonstrating biosimilarity based on data derived from: (1) analytical studies, (2) animal studies, and (3) a clinical study or studies that are sufficient to demonstrate safety, purity, and potency in one or more appropriate conditions of use for which the reference product is licensed, except that FDA may waive some of these requirements for a given application. Under this new statutory scheme, an application for a biosimilar product may not be submitted to the FDA until four years after the date of first licensure. The FDA may not approve a biosimilar product until 12 years from the date on which the reference product was first licensed. The law does not change the duration of patents granted on biological products. Even if a product is considered to be a reference product eligible for exclusivity, another company could market a competing version of that product if the FDA approves a full BLA for such product containing the sponsor's own preclinical data and data from adequate and well-controlled clinical trials to demonstrate the safety, purity and potency of their product. There have been recent proposals to repeal or modify the ACA and it is uncertain how any of those proposals, if approved, would affect these provisions.
We also rely on trade secret protection for our confidential and proprietary information. Although we take steps to protect our proprietary information and trade secrets, including through contractual means with our employees and consultants, third parties may independently develop substantially equivalent proprietary information and techniques or otherwise gain access to our trade secrets or disclose our technology. Thus, we may not be able to meaningfully protect our trade secrets. It is our policy to require our employees, consultants, outside scientific collaborators, sponsored researchers and other advisors to execute confidentiality agreements upon the commencement of employment or consulting relationships with us. These agreements provide that all confidential information concerning our business or financial affairs developed or made known to the individual during the course of the individual's relationship with us is to be kept confidential and not disclosed to third parties except in specific circumstances. In the case of employees, the agreements provide that all inventions conceived by the individual, and which are related to our current or planned business or research and development or made during normal working hours, on our premises or using our equipment or proprietary information, are our exclusive property. In many cases our confidentiality and other agreements with consultants, outside scientific collaborators, sponsored researchers and other advisors require them to assign or grant us licenses to inventions they invent as a result the work or services they render under such agreements or grant us an option to negotiate a license to use such inventions.
In-Licensed Intellectual Property
We have entered into patent and know-how license agreements that grant us the rights to use certain technologies related to biological manufacturing for our clinical product candidates. We anticipate using these technologies for future product candidates. These licensors have businesses dedicated to licensing this type of technology and we anticipate that licenses to use these technologies for our future products will be available. The licenses typically include yearly maintenance payments and sales royalties, and may also include upfront payments or milestone payments.
We currently manufacture drug substance for most of our clinical trials at our manufacturing facilities located in Rockville, Maryland. We also rely on contract manufacturers, primarily Byondis, for production of our ADC candidates. We have supplemented our drug substance manufacturing capacity through an arrangement with AGC Biologics, Inc. (AGC, formerly CMC Biologics, Inc.), a contract manufacturing organization, and are commercially producing margetuximab at AGC. We also intend to commercially produce material for our and our partner’s product candidates, when and if approved by the FDA. In addition, we currently rely on and will continue to rely on contract fill-finish service providers, primarily Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services and Baxter Healthcare Corporation, to fulfill our fill-finish needs for our current and future product candidates.
Most of the principal materials we use in our manufacturing operations are available from more than one source. However, we obtain certain raw materials principally from only one source. In the event one of these suppliers was unable to provide the materials or product, we generally seek to maintain sufficient inventory to supply the market until an alternative source of supply can be implemented. However, in the event of an extended failure of a supplier, it is possible that we could experience an interruption in supply until we established new sources or, in some cases, implemented alternative processes.
Production processes for biological therapeutic products are complex, highly regulated, and vary widely from product to product. Shifting or adding manufacturing capacity can be a very lengthy process requiring significant capital expenditures, process modifications, and regulatory approvals. Accordingly, if we were to experience extended plant shutdowns at one of our own facilities, extended failure of a contract supplier or contract manufacturing organization, or extraordinary unplanned increases in demand, we could experience an interruption in supply of certain products or product shortages until production could be resumed or expanded.
MARGENZA is currently our only approved product in the U.S. In November 2020, we partnered with EVERSANA, a pioneer of next-generation commercial services to the global life sciences industry, to commercialize margetuximab in the U.S. by leveraging their integrated commercial services. Under the terms of the agreement, we maintain ownership of margetuximab, including all manufacturing, regulatory and development responsibilities for the product. EVERSANA received a co-exclusive right to conduct approved commercialization activities. EVERSANA will utilize its internal capabilities to support sales and marketing, market access, channel management services, data and analytics, medical affairs, and other patient access related services; we will book MARGENZA sales. We and EVERSANA equally share in funding EVERSANA’s commercialization expenses. In exchange for co-funding these expenses, EVERSANA will earn future revenue share payments which shall be capped at 125% of EVERSANA’s cumulative service fees. The term of the agreement is five years following the date of FDA approval, subject to predefined termination provisions.
We cannot market or promote a new product in a country until a marketing application has been approved by the appropriate regulatory authority for that jurisdiction. Subject to receiving marketing authorization in a jurisdiction, we believe we will be able to commercialize in that market through arrangements with third-party commercial partners. Other than through our arrangement with EVERSANA for MARGENZA, we have not established a sales, marketing or distribution capabilities. If we are unable to enter into third-party commercial arrangements for other product candidates with respect to the United States, we believe that we could potentially put in place an appropriately sized organization to commercialize our approved product or products. Outside the United States, our strategy is to enter into arrangements with third-party commercial partners for any of our product candidates that obtain marketing approval.
There are a large number of companies developing or marketing treatments for cancer, including many major pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. These treatments consist both of small molecule drug products, as well as biologic therapeutics that work by using next-generation antibody technology platforms to address specific cancer targets. In particular, MARGENZA is directed against HER2 and several companies have cancer therapeutics directed against HER2 that are either currently approved and on the market or in development, such as F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd and Hoffmann-La Roche Inc. (Roche), particularly through its affiliate, Genentech, Inc., as well as Puma Biotechnology, Inc., Daiichi Sankyo
Company, Limited and AstraZeneca plc. (AstraZeneca), Seagen Inc., Zymeworks, Inc., and Byondis, many of which have significantly greater resources than we do. Market competition may limit the utilization of MARGENZA as a therapeutic, even if market approval and adequate reimbursement is obtained, and competition among development-stage programs for patients enrolling in clinical trials for HER2-directed therapies may delay expected timelines for our clinical trials.
In addition, the immuno-oncology field is competitive, with treatments currently approved and on the market or in development for various tumor types and patient populations from a variety of different companies such as Merck & Co., Inc. (Merck), The Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (BMS), and Roche, all of which have significantly greater resources than we do. Many of our pipeline programs, if successful, will likely face significant competition both by therapeutics that are already being marketed as well as those that will be approved for marketing before our programs. In particular, we are developing PD-1-directed product candidates, including a monoclonal antibody that we have outlicensed and two DART molecules. Merck, BMS, Roche, AstraZeneca, Pfizer Inc., Merck KGaA, and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. all have approved products that target either the PD-1 receptor or its ligand, PD-L1, and there are several other companies that have anti-PD-1 or anti-PD-L1 antibodies in clinical development, all of which would compete with our PD-1-directed programs. In addition, these and other companies are developing product candidates directed against other immuno-oncology targets that we are pursuing through our bispecific approaches.
Finally, several companies are also developing therapeutics that work by targeting multiple specificities using a single recombinant molecule. Amgen Inc. has obtained marketing approval for one product that works by targeting antigens both on immune effector cell populations and those expressed on certain cancer cells, and has other product candidates in development that use this mechanism. In addition, other companies are developing new treatments for cancer that utilize multi-specific approaches, including Abbvie Inc., Affimed Therapeutics AG Corporation, Eli Lilly and Company, Genmab A/S, Merus B.V., Regeneron, Roche, AstraZeneca, Xencor, Inc. and Zymeworks, Inc.
Many of our competitors have significantly greater financial, manufacturing, marketing, drug development, technical and human resources than we do. Mergers and acquisitions in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and diagnostic industries may result in even more resources being concentrated among a smaller number of our competitors. Smaller or early stage companies may also prove to be significant competitors, particularly through collaborative arrangements with large and established companies. These competitors also compete with us in recruiting and retaining top qualified scientific and management personnel and establishing clinical trial sites and patient registration for clinical trials, as well as in acquiring technologies complementary to, or necessary for, our programs.
The key competitive factors affecting the success of all of our therapeutic product candidates, if approved, are likely to be their efficacy, safety, dosing convenience, price, the effectiveness of companion diagnostics in guiding the use of related therapeutics, the level of generic or biosimilar competition and the availability of reimbursement from government and other third-party payors. In addition, the standard of medical care provided to cancer patients continues to evolve as more scientific and medical information becomes available. These changes in medical care relate to pharmaceutical products, but are also affected by other factors, and such changes can positively or negatively affect the prospects of our product candidates as well as those of our competitors.
Our commercial opportunity could be reduced or eliminated if our competitors develop and commercialize products that are more effective, have fewer or less severe effects, are more convenient or are less expensive than any products that we may develop, or the standards of care for cancer patients change while our clinical trials are ongoing. Our competitors also may obtain FDA or other regulatory approval for their products more rapidly than we may obtain approval for ours, which could result in our competitors establishing a strong market position before we are able to enter the market. In addition, our ability to compete may be affected in many cases by insurers or other third party payors seeking to encourage the use of biosimilar products. Biosimilar products are expected to become available over the coming years. For example, trastuzumab biosimilars have been approved in the U.S. by FDA.
The most common methods of treating patients with cancer are surgery, radiation and drug therapy. There are a variety of available drug therapies marketed for cancer. Many of these approved drugs are well established therapies and are widely accepted by physicians, patients and third party payors. In many cases, these drugs are administered in combination to enhance efficacy. While our product candidates may compete with many existing drug and other therapies, to the extent an approved drug is ultimately used in combination with or as an adjunct to these therapies, our product candidates will not be competitive with the approved drug.
Government Regulation and Product Approval
Government authorities in the United States, at the federal, state and local level, and in other countries extensively regulate, among other things, the research, development, testing, manufacture, packaging, storage, recordkeeping, labeling, advertising, promotion, distribution, marketing, import and export of pharmaceutical products such as those we are developing.
The processes for obtaining regulatory approvals in the United States and in foreign countries, along with subsequent compliance with applicable statutes and regulations, require the expenditure of substantial time and financial resources.
All of our current product candidates are subject to regulation in the United States by the FDA as biological products (biologics). The FDA subjects biologics to extensive pre- and post-market regulation. The Public Health Service Act, the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) and other federal and state statutes and regulations, govern, among other things, the research, development, testing, manufacture, storage, recordkeeping, approval, labeling, promotion and marketing, distribution, post-approval monitoring and reporting, sampling, and import and export of biologics. Failure to comply with applicable U.S. requirements may subject a company to a variety of administrative or judicial sanctions, such as FDA refusal to approve pending BLAs, withdrawal of approvals, clinical holds, warning letters, product recalls, product seizures, total or partial suspension of production or distribution, injunctions, fines, civil penalties, or criminal penalties.
Preclinical Studies. Drug development in our industry is complex, challenging and risky; failure rates are high. Product development cycles are long - approximately 10 to 15 years from discovery to market. A potential new biological product must undergo many years of preclinical and clinical testing to establish it is pure, potent and safe.
Preclinical studies include laboratory evaluation of product chemistry, formulation and toxicity, pharmacology, as well as animal trials to assess the characteristics and potential safety and efficacy of the product. The conduct of the preclinical tests must comply with federal regulations and requirements including FDA's good laboratory practice (GLP) regulations and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's regulations implementing the Animal Welfare Act. After laboratory analysis and preclinical testing in animals, we file an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the FDA to begin human testing. An IND sponsor must submit the results of the preclinical tests, together with manufacturing information, analytical data, any available clinical data or literature, and a proposed clinical trial protocol, among other things, to the FDA as part of an IND application. Certain preclinical tests, such as animal tests of reproductive toxicity and carcinogenicity, may continue even after the IND application is submitted. An IND application automatically becomes effective 30 days after receipt by the FDA, unless before that time the FDA raises concerns or questions related to one or more proposed clinical trials and places the clinical trial on a clinical hold or agrees on an alternate approach with us. In such a case, the IND sponsor and the FDA must resolve any outstanding concerns before the clinical trial can begin. As a result, submission of an IND application may not result in the FDA allowing clinical trials to commence.
Clinical Development. Clinical trials involve the administration of the investigational drug to human subjects (healthy volunteers or patients) under the supervision of a qualified investigator. Clinical trials must be conducted: (i) in compliance with all applicable federal regulations and guidance, including those pertaining to good clinical practice (GCP) standards that are meant to protect the rights, safety, and welfare of human subjects and to define the roles of clinical trial sponsors, investigators, and monitors; as well as (ii) under protocols detailing, among other things, the objectives of the trial, the parameters to be used in monitoring safety, and the effectiveness criteria to be evaluated. Each protocol involving testing of a new drug in the United States (whether in patients or healthy volunteers) must be included in the IND application submission, and FDA must be notified of subsequent protocol amendments. In addition, the protocol must be reviewed and approved by an institutional review board (IRB) and all study subjects must provide informed consent prior to participating in the study. Typically, each institution participating in the clinical trial will require review of the protocol before any clinical trial commences at that institution. Information about certain clinical trials must be submitted within specific timeframes to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for public dissemination on their ClinicalTrials.gov website. Progress reports detailing the results of the clinical trials must be submitted at least annually to the FDA and there are additional, more frequent reporting requirements for suspected unexpected serious adverse events.
A study sponsor might choose to discontinue a clinical trial or a clinical development program for a variety of reasons. The FDA may impose a temporary or permanent clinical hold, or other sanctions, if it believes that the clinical trial either is not being conducted in accordance with FDA requirements or presents an unacceptable risk to the clinical trial subjects. An IRB may also require the clinical trial at the site to be halted, either temporarily or permanently, for failure to comply with the IRB's requirements, or may impose other conditions.
Clinical trials to support BLAs for marketing approval are typically conducted in three pre-approval phases, but the phases may overlap or be combined, particularly in testing for oncology indications. In Phase 1, testing is conducted in a small group of subjects who may be patients with the target disease or condition or healthy volunteers, to evaluate its safety, determine a safe dosage range, and identify side effects. In Phase 2, the drug is given to a larger group of subjects with the target condition to further evaluate its safety and gather preliminary evidence of efficacy. Phase 3 studies typically last multiple years for oncology indications. In Phase 3, the drug is given to a large group of subjects with the target disease or condition (several hundred to several thousand), often at multiple geographical sites, to confirm its effectiveness, monitor side effects, and
collect data to support drug approval. In some cases, FDA may require post-market studies, known as Phase 4 studies, to be conducted as a condition of approval in order to gather additional information on the drug's effect in various populations and any side effects associated with long-term use. Depending on the risks posed by the drugs, other post-market requirements may be imposed. Only a small percentage of investigational drugs complete all three phases and obtain marketing approval.
Product Approval. After completion of the required clinical testing, a BLA can be prepared and submitted to the FDA. FDA approval of the BLA is required before marketing of the product may begin in the United States. The BLA must include the results of preclinical, clinical and other testing and a compilation of data relating to the product's chemistry, manufacture and controls. The cost of preparing and submitting a BLA is substantial. Under federal law, the submission of most BLAs is additionally subject to a substantial application user fee, and annual program user fees also apply. These fees are typically increased annually.
The FDA has 60 days from its receipt of a BLA to determine whether the application will be accepted for filing based on the FDA's threshold determination that it is sufficiently complete to permit substantive review. Once the submission is accepted for filing, the FDA begins a substantive review, and the review period under the PDUFA begins. The standard for reviewing a BLA is whether the product is safe, pure and potent, which has been interpreted to include that the product is safe and effective and has a favorable benefit-risk profile. FDA's current performance goals call for FDA to complete review of 90 percent of standard (non-priority) BLAs within 10 months of filing and within six months for priority BLAs, which is 12 months and eight months, respectively, if the 60-day review of the initial application is included in the timeline. In addition, the FDA has developed approaches intended to make certain qualifying products available to patients rapidly - Priority Review, Breakthrough Therapy, Accelerated Approval, and Fast Track. While the timelines for approval under these pathways may be shorter, there are requirements and conditions associated with each pathway, and there can be no assurance that any of our investigational products will be able to meet the conditions or requirements necessary to receive any such designation or be able to receive the review or approval benefits associated with such designations.
The FDA may refer applications for novel products or products that present difficult questions of safety or efficacy to an advisory committee, typically a panel that includes outside clinicians and other experts, for review, evaluation and a recommendation as to whether sufficient data exist in the application to support product approval. The FDA is not bound by the recommendation of an advisory committee, but it generally gives significant deference to such recommendations.
Before approving a BLA, the FDA will typically inspect one or more clinical sites and possibly the sponsor itself to assure compliance with GCP. Additionally, the FDA will typically inspect the facility or the facilities at which the drug is manufactured. FDA will not approve the product unless compliance with current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMPs) is satisfactory. FDA also reviews the proposed labeling submitted with the BLA and typically requires changes in the labeling text.
After the FDA evaluates the BLA and the manufacturing and testing facilities, it issues either an approval letter or a complete response letter. Complete response letters generally outline the deficiencies in the submission and delineate the additional testing or information needed in order for the FDA to reconsider the application. If and when deficiencies outlined in a complete response letter have been addressed to the FDA's satisfaction in a resubmission of the BLA, the FDA will issue an approval letter. The FDA has committed to reviewing 90 percent of resubmissions within two or six months from receipt depending on the type of information included.
An approval letter authorizes commercial marketing of the drug for the approved indication or indications and the other conditions of use set out in the approved prescribing information. Once granted, product approvals may be withdrawn if compliance with regulatory standards is not maintained or problems are identified following initial marketing.
As a condition of BLA approval, the FDA may require substantial post-approval testing and surveillance to monitor the drug's safety or efficacy and may impose other conditions, including labeling restrictions that can materially affect the potential market and profitability of the product. As a condition of approval, or after approval, the FDA also may require submission of a risk evaluation and mitigation strategy (REMS) to mitigate any identified or suspected serious risks. The REMS may include medication guides, physician communication plans, assessment plans, and elements to assure safe use, such as restricted distribution methods, patient registries, or other risk minimization tools.
Other U.S. Post-Marketing Regulatory Requirements. Once a BLA is approved, a product will be subject to certain post-approval requirements, including those relating to advertising, promotion, adverse event reporting, recordkeeping, and cGMPs, as well as registration, listing, and inspection. There also are continuing, annual program user fee requirements for marketed products, as well as new application fees for supplemental applications with clinical data.
FDA regulates the content and format of prescription drug labeling, advertising, and promotion, including direct-to-consumer advertising and promotional Internet communications. FDA also establishes parameters for permissible non-
promotional communications between industry and the medical community, including industry-supported scientific and educational activities. The FDA and other agencies actively enforce the laws and regulations prohibiting the promotion for uses not consistent with the approved labeling, and a company that is found to have improperly promoted off-label uses or otherwise not to have met applicable promotion rules may be subject to significant liability under both the FDCA and other statutes, including the False Claims Act. See "Other Healthcare Laws and Compliance Requirements" below for more information.
All aspects of pharmaceutical manufacture must conform to cGMPs after approval. Drug manufacturers and certain of their subcontractors are required to register their establishments with FDA and certain state agencies, and are subject to periodic unannounced inspections by the FDA during which the FDA inspects manufacturing facilities to assess compliance with cGMPs. Changes to the manufacturing process are strictly regulated and often require prior FDA approval before being implemented. FDA regulations also require investigation and correction of any deviations from cGMPs and impose reporting and documentation requirements upon the sponsor and any third-party manufacturers that the sponsor may decide to use. Accordingly, manufacturers must continue to expend time, money and effort in the areas of production and quality control to maintain compliance with cGMPs.
Products may be marketed only for the approved indications and in accordance with the provisions of the approved labeling. Changes to some of the conditions established in an approved application, including changes in indications, labeling, product formulation or manufacturing processes or facilities, require submission and FDA approval of a new BLA or BLA supplement, in some cases before the change may be implemented. A BLA supplement for a new indication typically requires clinical data similar to that in the original application, and the FDA uses the same procedures and actions in reviewing BLA supplements as it does in reviewing BLAs.
Manufacturers are subject to requirements for adverse event reporting and submission of periodic reports following FDA approval of a BLA. Later discovery of previously unknown problems with a product, including adverse events of unanticipated severity or frequency, or with manufacturing processes, or failure to comply with regulatory requirements, or failure of Phase 4 studies to meet their specified endpoints, may result in revisions to the approved labeling to add new safety information, the need to conduct additional post-market studies or clinical trials to assess new safety risks, imposition of distribution or other restrictions under a REMS program, or recall of the product and withdrawal of the BLA.
Noncompliance with post-marketing requirements can result in one or more of the following consequences:
•Restrictions on the marketing or manufacturing of the product, complete withdrawal of the product from the market or product recalls;
•Holds on post-approval clinical trials;
•Refusal of the FDA to approve pending BLAs or supplements to approved BLAs, or suspension or revocation of product license approvals;
•Product seizure or detention, or refusal to permit the import or export of products; or
•Injunctions or the imposition of civil or criminal penalties.
In addition, the distribution of prescription pharmaceutical products is subject to the Prescription Drug Marketing Act (PDMA) which regulates the distribution of drugs and drug samples at the federal level, and sets minimum standards for the registration and regulation of drug distributors by the states. Both the PDMA and state laws limit the distribution of prescription pharmaceutical product samples and impose requirements to ensure accountability in distribution.
Approval of Biosimilars. The ACA authorized the FDA to approve biosimilars via a separate, abbreviated pathway. In many cases, this allows biosimilars to be brought to market without conducting the full suite of clinical trials typically required of originators. The law establishes a period of 12 years of exclusivity for reference products in order to preserve incentives for future innovation, and outlines statutory criteria for science-based biosimilar approval standards that take into account patient safety considerations. Under this framework, exclusivity protects innovator products by prohibiting others, for a period of 12 years, from being granted FDA approval based in part on reliance on or reference to the innovator's data in their application to the FDA. The law does not change the duration of patents granted on biological products. There are regular legislative proposals to rescind or reduce the biologics exclusivity provisions of the ACA and it is uncertain whether or if any of those proposals may be approved, and if approved, how exclusivity for biologics would be affected.
Other Healthcare Laws and Compliance Requirements
In the United States, our activities are potentially subject to regulation by federal, state, and local authorities in addition to the FDA, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, other divisions of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (e.g., the Office of Inspector General), the U.S. Department of Justice and individual U.S. Attorney offices within the Department of Justice, and state and local governments.
For example, certain financial interactions with healthcare professionals may be subject to the anti-kickback and fraud and abuse provisions of the Social Security Act and the False Claims Act, and in addition our activities may be affected by the privacy regulations issued under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, as amended, and similar state laws.
In addition to regulations in the United States, we and our collaborators, may be subject to a variety of foreign regulations governing clinical trials, drug registration, commercial sales and distribution of our product candidates outside the United States. These regulations can vary between jurisdictions and can be more onerous than regulations in the United States. Whether or not we obtain FDA approval for a product candidate, we must obtain approval from the comparable regulatory authorities of foreign countries or economic areas, such as the European Union (EU) before we may commence clinical trials or market products in those countries or areas. The approval process and requirements governing the conduct of clinical trials, product licensing, pricing and reimbursement vary greatly from place to place, and the time to approval may be longer or shorter than that required for FDA approval.
Certain countries outside of the United States have a process that requires the submission of a clinical trial application (CTA) much like an IND prior to the commencement of human clinical trials. In Europe, for example, a CTA must be submitted to the competent national health authority and to independent ethics committees in each country in which a company intends to conduct clinical trials. Once the CTA is approved in accordance with a country’s requirements, clinical trial development may proceed in that country. In all cases, the clinical trials must be conducted in accordance with GCP, and other applicable regulatory requirements. A separate CTA must be submitted for each clinical trial to be conducted.
In the EU, for example, to obtain regulatory approval of an investigational medicinal product, we must submit a marketing authorisation application (MAA). The content of the MAA is similar to that of a New Drug Application or BLA filed in the United States, with the exception of, among other things, EU-specific document requirements. Under the EU regulatory system, a company may submit marketing authorisation applications either under a centralised or decentralised procedure. Under the centralised procedure in the EU, a MAA is submitted to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) where it will be evaluated by the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP). The maximum timeframe for a CHMP evaluation of an MAA that has been validated is 210 days, excluding time taken by an applicant to respond to questions. A favorable opinion on the application by the CHMP will typically result in the granting of the marketing authorisation by the European Commission within 67 days of receipt of the opinion. Generally, the entire review process takes approximately 13-14 months. Accelerated evaluation might be granted by the CHMP in exceptional cases, when a medicinal product is expected to be of a major public health interest, particularly from the point of view of therapeutic innovation. In this circumstance, the EMA ensures that the opinion of the CHMP is given within 150 days, excluding time taken by an applicant to respond to questions.
As in the United States, we or our collaborators may apply for designation of a product as an orphan drug for the treatment of a specific indication in the EU before the MAA is made. Orphan drugs in Europe enjoy certain benefits, including up to 10 years of exclusivity for the approved indication unless another applicant can show that its product is safer, more effective or otherwise clinically superior to the orphan designated product. The PRIME initiative was established by the EMA to help promote and foster the development of new medicines in the EU that demonstrate potential for a major therapeutic advantage in areas of unmet medical need. Benefits from the PRIME designation include early confirmation of potential for accelerated assessment, early dialogue and increased interaction with relevant regulatory committees to discuss development options, scientific advice at key development milestones, and proactive regulatory support from the EMA.
If we, or our collaborators, fail to comply with applicable foreign regulatory requirements, we may be subject to, among other things, fines, suspension or withdrawal of regulatory approvals, product recalls, seizure of products, operating restrictions and criminal prosecution.
BioPharmaceutical Coverage, Pricing, and Reimbursement
In the United States and other countries, sales of any future products for which we receive regulatory approval for commercial sale will depend in part on the availability of adequate reimbursement from third-party payors, including government health administrative authorities, managed care providers, private health insurers, and other organizations. Third-party payors are increasingly examining the medical necessity and cost effectiveness of medical products and services in addition to safety and efficacy and, accordingly, significant uncertainty exists as to the reimbursement status of newly approved
therapeutics. Third-party reimbursement adequate to enable us to realize an appropriate return on our investment in research and product development may not be available or optimal for our products.
Drug prices have become a subject of increased focus in recent years. Although there are currently no direct government price controls over private sector purchases in the U.S., federal law requires pharmaceutical manufacturers to pay prescribed rebates on certain government or Medicaid-reimbursed drugs to enable them to be eligible for reimbursement under certain public healthcare programs such as Medicaid and Medicare Part B. Various states have adopted further mechanisms that seek to control drug prices, including by disfavoring certain higher priced drugs or by seeking supplemental rebates from manufacturers. Managed care has also become a potent force in the market place that increases downward pressure on the prices of pharmaceutical products.
Public and private healthcare payers control costs and influence drug pricing through a variety of mechanisms, including through negotiating discounts with the manufacturers and through the use of tiered formularies and other mechanisms that provide preferential access to certain drugs over others within a therapeutic class. Payers also set other criteria to govern the uses of a drug that will be deemed medically appropriate and therefore reimbursed or otherwise covered.
As of December 31, 2020, we had 370 full-time employees, 314 of whom were primarily engaged in research, development and manufacturing activities, and 73 of whom had an M.D. and/or Ph.D. Our employees are critically important to the achievement of our company’s mission and goals. We periodically conduct employee engagement surveys to understand our employees’ perspectives and endeavor to address, improve, or build on how we work together in response to these perspectives. We face significant competition for experienced and talented individuals in our area due to the growth of local companies. We monitor our compensation, benefits, and exit interview data and make changes as needed to enable the ongoing recruitment and selection of talented new employees, as well as to retain existing talent. We strive to offer our employees an intellectually challenging and diverse work environment, opportunities to expand their knowledge and skills and receive feedback on performance, and for career advancement. Our Living Values, which focus on patients, honest and transparent communications, innovation, ethics, collaboration, our sense of urgency and getting results, set the tone for how we work together.
We empowered a cross-functional team in the early days of the ongoing pandemic to recommend safety protocols, ensure timely communications, and make decisions related to the effect of COVID-19 on our employees and work environment. We believe management’s relationships with our employees is very positive and they are not subject to a collective bargaining agreement or represented by a trade or labor union.
Our website address is www.macrogenics.com. We post links to our website to the following filings as soon as reasonably practicable after they are electronically filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC): annual reports on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K, proxy statements, and any amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. All such filings are available through our website free of charge. In addition, the SEC makes available at its website (www.sec.gov), free of charge, reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC.
ITEM 1A. RISK FACTORS
The discussion below addresses material factors, of which we are currently aware, that could have a material and adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition. Many of the following risks and uncertainties are, and will be, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and any worsening of the global business and economic environment as a result. These risk factors and other forward-looking statements that relate to future events, expectations, trends and operating periods involve certain factors that are subject to change, and important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. These risks and uncertainties should not be considered a complete discussion of all the risks and uncertainties we may face and although the risks are organized by headings and each risk is discussed separately, many are interrelated.
Summary of Risk Factors Affecting Our Business
Our business is subject to numerous risks. The following summary highlights some of the risks you should consider with respect to our business and prospects. This summary is not complete and the risks summarized below are not the only risks we face. You should review and consider carefully the risks and uncertainties described in the “Risk Factors” section of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, which includes a more complete discussion of the risks summarized below as well as a discussion of other risks related to our business and an investment in our common stock, as well as our other SEC filings.
•We depend substantially on the success of the clinical development of our products and product candidates. If we are unable to successfully complete clinical development, obtain additional regulatory approvals and commercialize our products and product candidates, or experience significant delays in doing so, our business will be materially harmed.
•MARGENZA, or any other product candidate that we may develop, may fail to achieve market acceptance by physicians, patients, third-party payors and others in the medical community necessary, diminishing any potential commercial success.
•We have limited experience in launching and marketing biopharmaceutical products. If we are unable to further develop marketing and sales or other commercialization capabilities or enter into agreements with third parties to market and sell our products, we may not be able to generate substantial product sales revenue.
•We face significant competition and if our competitors develop and market products that are more effective, have a more favorable safety profile, or are less expensive than MARGENZA and our product candidates, our commercial opportunities may be negatively impacted.
•Clinical drug development involves a lengthy and expensive process, with a highly uncertain outcome. We may incur additional costs or experience delays in completing, or ultimately be unable to complete, the development and commercialization of our products and product candidates.
•If clinical trials for our product candidates are prolonged, delayed or stopped, for any reason, we may be unable to obtain regulatory approval and commercialize our product candidates on a timely basis, which would require us to incur additional costs and delay our receipt of any product revenue.
•The results of previous clinical trials may not be predictive of future results, and interim or top line data may be subject to change or qualification based the complete analysis of data. In addition, the results of our current or planned clinical trials may not satisfy the requirements of the FDA or non-U.S. regulatory authorities for product approval.
•We use or may use novel technologies in the development of our product candidates and the FDA and other regulatory authorities have not approved or may not approve products that utilize these technologies.
•We may not be successful in our efforts to use and expand our technology platforms to build a pipeline of product candidates. We may expend our limited resources to pursue a particular product candidate or indication and fail to capitalize on product candidates or indications that may be more profitable or for which there is a greater likelihood of success.
•We and/or our collaboration partners may never obtain approval of, or commercialize, our products outside of the United States, which would limit our ability to realize the products full market potential.
•Our product candidates may have undesirable side effects which may delay or prevent further clinical development or marketing approval, or, if approval is received, require them to be taken off the market, require them to include safety warnings or otherwise limit their sales.
•The manufacture of MARGENZA and our product candidates, for ourselves and our collaborators, is complex, and we may encounter difficulties in production.
•We have limited experience in large-scale or commercial manufacturing, and there can be no assurance that we will be able to effectively manufacture clinical or commercial quantities of our products.
•Our manufacturing facilities are subject to significant government regulations and approvals, which are often costly and could result in adverse consequences to our business if we fail to comply with the regulations or maintain the approvals.
•Reimbursement decisions by third-party payors, including government payors, may have an adverse effect on pricing and market acceptance.
•Actual or anticipated changes to the laws and regulations governing the health care system may have a negative impact on cost and access to health insurance coverage and reimbursement of healthcare items and services.
•If any product liability lawsuits are successfully brought against us or any of our collaborators, we may incur substantial liabilities and may be required to limit commercialization of our product candidates.
•The current or future impact of the COVID-19 (or any variant thereof) pandemic may have significant negative impact on our clinical trials, preclinical studies, commercialization of MARGENZA, development, manufacturing and commercialization of our product candidates and other aspects of our business, staff, and operations. The extent to which the COVID-19 pandemic, both now and in the future, adversely affects our financial condition, results of operations, and liquidity, will depend on future developments, including but not limited to the measures taken by public and private entities in response to the pandemic, which remain highly uncertain and cannot be predicted.
•We have incurred significant losses since inception and anticipate that we will continue to incur losses for the foreseeable future.
•We will require substantial additional funding, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms, or at all, and, if not available, may require us to delay, scale back, or cease our product development programs or operations.
•Raising additional capital may cause dilution to our stockholders, restrict our operations or require us to relinquish substantial rights.
•Our inability, or the inability of third-party contractors, to successfully develop or commercialize companion diagnostics, assays, or other tests either for use with our product candidates, or to aid physicians and patients in making treatment decisions, could harm our ability to commercialize our product candidates.
•We contract with third parties for the manufacturing, distribution and commercialization of MARGENZA and we may contract with third parties for the manufacture, distribution, or commercialization of some of our product candidates for clinical testing in the future.
•Our commercial success depends significantly on our ability to operate without infringing the valid patents and other proprietary rights of third parties.
•If we are unable to obtain and enforce adequate patent protection for MARGENZA and our other product candidates and related technologies, our business could be materially harmed.
•If we do not comply with laws regulating the protection of the environment and health and human safety, our business could be adversely affected.
•If we do not comply with the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other anti-corruption laws, our business could be adversely affected.
•Our future success depends on our ability to retain key executives and to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel.
•We are subject to securities litigation, which is expensive and could divert management attention and adversely impact our business.
Risks Related to Our Business and the Development and Commercialization of Our Products and Product Candidates
We depend substantially on the success of the clinical development of our products and product candidates. If we are unable to successfully complete clinical development, obtain additional regulatory approvals and commercialize our products and product candidates, or experience significant delays in doing so, our business will be materially harmed.
Our business depends on the successful development, regulatory approval and commercialization of our products and product candidates, such as MARGENZA, for which in December 2020 we obtained FDA approval, in combination with chemotherapy, for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer who have received two or more prior anti-HER2 regimens, at least one of which was for metastatic disease. MARGENZA is our first product approved for sale and we expect MARGENZA will be available to patients in the U.S. in March 2021. We have invested a significant portion of our efforts and financial resources in the development of our products and product candidates, including MARGENZA. The success of our products and product candidates depends on many factors, including but not limited to:
•successful enrollment in, and completion of, clinical trials, as well as completion of preclinical studies;
•safety and favorable efficacy and acceptable safety data from our clinical trials and other studies;
•receipt of regulatory approvals;
•establishing commercial manufacturing capabilities, either by building out and expanding our current manufacturing facilities or making arrangements with third-party manufacturers;
•the performance by clinical research organizations (CROs) or other third parties we may retain of their duties to us in a manner that complies with our protocols and applicable laws and that protects the integrity of the resulting data;
•obtaining and maintaining patent, trade secret and other intellectual property protection and regulatory exclusivity;
•ensuring we do not infringe, misappropriate or otherwise violate the valid patent, trade secret or other intellectual property rights of third parties;
•successfully launching our products, such as MARGENZA, and our other product candidates, if and when approved;
•obtaining favorable reimbursement from third-party payors for products and product candidates;
•competition with other products;
•post-marketing commitments to regulatory agencies following regulatory approval;
•continued acceptable safety profile following regulatory approval; and
•manufacturing or obtaining sufficient supplies of our products and product candidates that may be necessary for use in clinical trials for evaluation of our product candidates and commercialization of our products.
If we do not achieve and maintain one or more of these factors in a timely manner or at all, we could experience significant delays in our ability to, or be unable to obtain additional regulatory approvals for, and/or to successfully commercialize our products and product candidates, which would materially harm our business and we may not be able to generate sufficient revenues and cash flows to continue our operations.
MARGENZA or any other product candidate that we develop may fail to achieve market acceptance by physicians, patients, third-party payors and others in the medical community necessary for commercial success.
MARGENZA or any other product candidates that we develop may fail to gain market acceptance by physicians, patients, third-party payors and others in the medical community. If MARGENZA or any such product candidate that we develop does not achieve an adequate level of acceptance, we may not generate significant product revenues and we may not become profitable. The degree of market acceptance of MARGENZA or any other product candidates that we develop will depend on a number of factors, including:
•the efficacy and potential advantages compared to alternative treatments;
•our ability to offer our products for sale at competitive prices;
•the convenience and ease of administration compared to alternative treatments;
•the willingness of physicians to prescribe MARGENZA or other new therapies, and of the patient population to try MARGENZA or these therapies;
•the strength of marketing, sales, and distribution support;
•the availability of third-party coverage and adequate reimbursement;
•the prevalence and severity of any side effects; any safety events that may have occurred in connection with the development of the product candidate; and
•any restrictions on the use of our products together with other medications.
MARGENZA’s market acceptance depends significantly on the medical community’s determination of clinical benefit and safety compared to alternative therapies available both now and in the future. Several new therapies for the treatment of HER2-positive breast cancer have recently been approved. Certain of these therapies may have or may be perceived to have greater efficacy benefits than MARGENZA in clinical trials. Competition from recently approved therapies may adversely impact the market acceptance of MARGENZA. In addition, market acceptance and the medical community determination of clinical benefit may depend significantly on the pending results of the final Overall Survival (OS) endpoint data from the SOPHIA trial, which MARGENZA result may not be favorable compared to trastuzumab, or, even if favorable compared to trastuzumab, may not be statistically significant, clinically meaningful or favorable when compared to other available or future therapies.
In addition, the potential market opportunity for MARGENZA is difficult to precisely estimate. Our internal estimates of the potential market opportunity for MARGENZA include several key assumptions based on our industry knowledge, industry publications, third-party research reports, assessment of competition, and other surveys. While we believe that our internal assumptions are reasonable, no independent source has verified such assumptions. If any of these assumptions proves to be inaccurate, then the actual market for MARGENZA could be smaller than our estimates of our potential market opportunity. If the actual market for MARGENZA is small, and/or smaller than we expect, our product revenue may be limited and it may be more difficult for us to achieve or maintain profitability.
We have limited experience in launching and marketing our internally developed products. If we are unable to further develop marketing and sales capabilities or enter into agreements with third parties to market and sell our products, or our existing arrangements are not successful, we may not be able to generate substantial product sales revenue.
In December 2020, the FDA approved MARGENZA, in combination with chemotherapy, for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer who have received two or more prior anti-HER2 regimens, at least one of which was for metastatic disease. We expect to launch MARGENZA in March 2021. In conjunction with EVERSANA we continue to build commercialization support in United States to commercialize MARGENZA. We have limited internal commercialization capabilities, and any additional products or product candidates that we may develop or in-license, will require significant capital expenditures, management resources and time.
We have limited experience in commercializing our internally developed products, such as MARGENZA. For example, we have limited experience in building and managing a commercial team, conducting a comprehensive market analysis, obtaining state licenses and reimbursement, or managing distributors and a sales force for our products. We will be competing with many companies that currently have extensive and well-funded sales and marketing operations. As a result, although we have partnered with EVERSANA to commercialize MARGENZA, our ability to successfully commercialize
MARGENZA or any of our products may involve more inherent risk, take longer, and cost more than it would if we were a company with substantial experience launching products.
For commercialization of any or all of our product candidates, we will have to compete with other pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies to recruit, hire, train and retain marketing and sales personnel, If we are unable to, or decide not to, further develop internal sales, marketing, and commercial distribution capabilities for any or all of our products, we will likely pursue additional collaborative arrangements regarding the sales and marketing of our products. However, there can be no assurance that we will be able to establish or maintain such collaborative arrangements, or if we are able to do so, that they will have effective sales forces. Any revenue we receive will depend upon the efforts of such third parties. We would have little or no control over the marketing and sales efforts of such third parties, and our revenue from product sales may be lower than if we had commercialized our products ourselves. We also face competition in our search for third parties to assist us with the sales and marketing efforts for our products.
There can be no assurance that we will be able to further develop and successfully maintain internal sales and commercial distribution capabilities or establish or maintain relationships with third-party collaborators to successfully commercialize any product, and as a result, we may not be able to generate substantial product sales revenue.
We face significant competition and if our competitors develop and market products that are more effective, safer or less expensive than MARGENZA and our product candidates, our commercial opportunities will be negatively impacted.
The life sciences industry is highly competitive and subject to rapid and significant technological change. Our approved product, MARGENZA, competes with, and our product candidates under development (if approved) will compete with, drugs and therapies that currently exist or are being developed. We have competitors both in the United States and internationally, including major multinational pharmaceutical companies, established biotechnology companies, specialty pharmaceutical companies, universities and other research institutions. Many of our competitors have significantly greater financial, manufacturing, marketing, drug development, technical and human resources than we do. Large pharmaceutical companies, in particular, have extensive experience in clinical testing, obtaining regulatory approvals, recruiting patients and manufacturing pharmaceutical products. These companies also have significantly greater research and marketing capabilities than we do and may also have products that have been approved or are in late stages of development, and collaborative arrangements in our target markets with leading companies and research institutions. Established pharmaceutical companies may also invest heavily to accelerate discovery and development of novel compounds or to in-license novel compounds that could make the product candidates that we develop obsolete. As a result of all of these factors, our competitors may succeed, or may have succeeded, in obtaining patent protection and/or FDA approval or discovering, developing and commercializing products in our field before we do.
Specifically, there are a large number of companies developing or marketing potential treatments for cancer, including many major pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. These treatments consist both of small molecule drug products, as well as biologic therapeutics that work by using next-generation antibody technology platforms to address specific cancer targets. In addition, several companies are developing therapeutics that work by targeting multiple specificities using a single recombinant molecule. See “Competition” above for additional information.
Our commercial opportunity could be reduced or eliminated if our competitors develop and commercialize products that are safer, more effective, have fewer or less severe effects, are more convenient or are less expensive than any products that we may develop. Our competitors also may obtain FDA or other regulatory approval for their products more rapidly than we may obtain approval for ours. For example, Daiichi Sankyo Inc.'s product ENHERTU® (fam-trastuzumab deruxtecan-nxki) and Seagen’s product TUKYSATM (tucatinib) both recently launched in the United States in patient populations that potentially compete with the patient population for MARGENZA. This could result in, or has resulted in, our competitors establishing a strong market position before we are able to enter the market. In addition, both ENHERTU and TUKYSA demonstrated greater efficacy results than MARGENZA in clinical trials. In addition, our ability to compete may be affected in many cases by insurers or other third-party payors seeking to encourage the use of biosimilar products. For example, certain HER2 biosimilar products are approved in certain countries, including the United States, and others may be approved prior to commercialization of, or market acceptance of, MARGENZA. MARGENZA and product candidates, if approved, may be priced at a significant premium over competitive biosimilar products.
Smaller and other early stage companies may also prove to be significant competitors, particularly through collaborative arrangements with large and established companies. These third parties compete with us in recruiting and retaining qualified scientific and management personnel, establishing clinical trial sites and patient registration for clinical trials, as well as in acquiring technologies complementary to, or necessary for, our programs. In addition, the biopharmaceutical industry is characterized by rapid technological change. If we fail to stay at the forefront of technological change, we may be
unable to compete effectively. Technological advances or products developed by our competitors may render our technologies, products or product candidates obsolete, less competitive or not economical.
Clinical drug development involves a lengthy and expensive process, with an uncertain outcome. We may incur additional costs or experience delays in completing, or ultimately be unable to complete, the development and commercialization of our products and product candidates.
The research, testing, manufacturing, labeling, approval, selling, marketing and distribution of drug products are subject to extensive regulation by the FDA and non-U.S. regulatory authorities, which regulations differ from country to country. We are not permitted to market our product candidates in the United States or in other countries until we receive approval of a Biologics License Application (BLA) from the FDA or marketing approval from applicable regulatory authorities outside the United States. Our product candidates are in various stages of development and are subject to the risks of failure inherent in drug development. For example, in December 2020, the FDA approved the BLA for MARGENZA. MARGENZA is our first product approved for sale in any jurisdiction. In addition, our collaborator Incyte submitted a BLA for retifanlimab in January 2021. Obtaining approval of a BLA can be a lengthy, expensive and uncertain process. In addition, failure to comply with FDA and non-U.S. regulatory requirements may, either before or after product approval, subject our company or our collaborators to administrative or judicially imposed sanctions, including:
•restrictions on our ability to conduct clinical trials, including full or partial clinical holds on ongoing or planned trials;
•restrictions on the products, manufacturers, manufacturing facilities or manufacturing process;
•civil and criminal penalties;
•suspension or withdrawal of regulatory approvals;
•product seizures, detentions or import bans;
•voluntary or mandatory product recalls and publicity requirements;
•total or partial suspension of production;
•imposition of restrictions on operations, including costly new manufacturing requirements; and
•refusal to approve pending BLAs or supplements to approved BLAs or analogous marketing approvals outside the United States.
The FDA and foreign regulatory authorities also have substantial discretion in the drug approval process. The number of preclinical studies and clinical trials that will be required for regulatory approval varies depending on the product candidate, the disease or condition that the product candidate is designed to address, and the regulations applicable to any particular drug candidate. Regulatory agencies can delay, limit or deny approval of a product candidate for many reasons, including:
•a product candidate may not be deemed safe or effective;
•the results may not confirm the positive results from earlier preclinical studies or clinical trials;
•regulatory agencies may not find the data from preclinical studies and clinical trials sufficient or meaningful;
•regulatory agencies might not approve or might require changes to our manufacturing processes or facilities; or
•regulatory agencies may change their approval policies or adopt new regulations.
Any delay in obtaining or failure to obtain required approvals could materially adversely affect our ability to generate revenue from the particular product candidate, which likely would result in significant harm to our financial position and adversely impact our stock price. Furthermore, any regulatory approval to market a product may be subject to limitations on the
indicated uses for which we may market the product. These limitations may limit the size of the potential market for a product candidate, if approved.
Even if we and our collaborators obtain regulatory approvals to market our current and any future approved products, we and our collaborators will remain subject to extensive ongoing regulatory obligations and oversight, including post-approval requirements, that could result in significant additional expense and could negatively impact our and our collaborators' ability to commercialize our current and any future approved products.
We and our collaborators are subject to extensive ongoing obligations and continued regulatory review from applicable regulatory agencies with respect to any product obtaining regulatory approval, including MARGENZA, such as continued adverse event reporting requirements and post-marketing commitments, all of which may result in significant expense and limit our and our collaborators' ability to commercialize our current and any future approved products. For example, the FDA's approval of MARGENZA included a requirement that we provide to the FDA the data from the final overall survival endpoint from our SOPHIA study, when available. Unfavorable overall survival results could result in the withdrawal of approval of MARGENZA or the inclusion of unfavorable safety information in our product labeling, or diminished market opportunity or acceptance, which could seriously harm our business. Moreover, in connection with MARGENZA’s approval, the labeling and advertising and promotion of MARGENZA are subject to additional regulatory requirements, which could entail significant expense and could negatively impact the potential commercialization of MARGENZA. In addition, the use of MARGENZA may uncover additional adverse events that limit or prevent MARGENZA’s widespread use or that force us to withdraw MARGENZA from the market, and any problems with MARGENZA or any violation of ongoing regulatory obligations could result in restrictions on MARGENZA, including its withdrawal from the market. To the extent other product candidates or those of our partners are approved by the FDA, we or our collaborators may be subject to similar post-marketing obligations.
We and the manufacturers of our current and any future approved products are also required, or will be required, to comply with current Good Manufacturing Practices, or cGMP, regulations, which include requirements relating to quality control and quality assurance as well as the corresponding maintenance of records and documentation. Further, regulatory agencies must approve these manufacturing facilities before they can be used to manufacture our products and product candidates, and these facilities are subject to ongoing regulatory inspections. In addition, regulatory agencies subject an approved product, its manufacturer and the manufacturer’s facilities to continual review and inspections, including periodic unannounced inspections. The subsequent discovery of previously unknown problems with our current or any future approved products, including adverse events of unanticipated severity or frequency, or problems with the facilities where our current or any future approved products are manufactured, may result in restrictions on the marketing of our current or any such future approved products, up to and including withdrawal of the affected product from the market. If our manufacturing facilities, our collaborators' manufacturing facilities, or those of our respective suppliers, fail to comply with applicable regulatory requirements, such noncompliance could result in regulatory action and additional costs to us.
Failure to comply with applicable FDA and other regulatory requirements may subject us to administrative or judicially imposed sanctions, including:
•issuance of Form FDA 483 notices or Warning Letters by the FDA or other regulatory agencies;
•imposition of fines and other civil penalties;
•injunctions, suspensions or revocations of regulatory approvals;
•suspension of any ongoing clinical trials;
•total or partial suspension of manufacturing;
•delays in commercialization;
•refusal by the FDA to approve pending applications or supplements to approved applications submitted by us;
•refusals to permit drugs to be imported into or exported from the United States;
•restrictions on operations, including costly new manufacturing requirements; and
•product recalls or seizures.
The policies of the FDA and other regulatory agencies may change and additional government regulations may be enacted that could prevent or delay regulatory approval of our product candidates or of MARGENZA in any additional indications or territories, or further restrict or regulate post-approval activities. We cannot predict the likelihood, nature or extent of adverse government regulation that may arise from future legislation or administrative action, either in the United States or abroad. If we are not able to maintain regulatory compliance, we or our collaborators might not be permitted to market our current or any future approved products and our business would suffer.
If clinical trials for our product candidates are prolonged, delayed or stopped, for any reason, we may be unable to obtain regulatory approval and commercialize our product candidates on a timely basis, which would require us to incur additional costs and delay our receipt of any product revenue.
We are either currently enrolling patients in clinical trials or anticipate initiating or continuing clinical trials for molecules that include margetuximab, enoblituzumab, flotetuzumab, retifanlimab, tebotelimab,MGC018, MGD014, and MGD019, as monotherapies or in combination with other product candidates in 2021. In addition, Incyte Corporation is currently enrolling patients in clinical trials for retifanlimab, and other collaborators outside the United States are developing our product candidates and enrolling patients in clinical trials. We anticipate our collaborators will initiate or continue clinical trials including our other product candidates. The continuation, modification, or commencement of existing or new clinical trials could be substantially delayed or prevented by several factors, including:
•further discussions with the FDA or other regulatory agencies regarding the scope or design of our clinical trials;
•the limited number of, and competition for, suitable sites to conduct our clinical trials, many of which may already be engaged in other clinical trial programs, including some that may be for the same indication as our product candidates;
•any delay or failure in patient recruitment or enrollment in our or our collaborators’ trials for any reason, including as a result of public health crises such as the evolving COVID-19 pandemic;
• any delay or failure to obtain regulatory approval or agreement to commence a clinical trial in any of the countries where enrollment is planned;
•inability to obtain sufficient funds required for a clinical trial;
•clinical holds on, or other regulatory objections to, a new or ongoing clinical trial;
•delay or failure to manufacture sufficient supplies of the product candidate for our clinical trials;
•delay or failure to reach agreement on acceptable clinical trial terms or clinical trial protocols with prospective sites or CROs the terms of which can be subject to extensive negotiation and may vary significantly among different sites or CROs; and
•delay or failure to obtain institutional review board (IRB) approval to conduct a clinical trial at a prospective site.
The progress or completion of our, or our collaborators', clinical trials could also be substantially delayed or prevented by many factors, including:
•delays in expected site initiation, patient recruitment and enrollment, for any reason, including as a result of public health crises such as the evolving COVID-19 pandemic
•failure of patients to complete the clinical trial;
•unforeseen safety issues, including severe or unexpected drug-related adverse effects experienced by patients, including possible deaths;
•lack of efficacy during clinical trials;
•termination of our clinical trials by one or more clinical trial sites;
•inability or unwillingness of patients or clinical investigators to follow our clinical trial protocols;
•inability to monitor patients adequately during or after treatment by us, our collaboration partners and/or our CROs; and
•the need to repeat or terminate clinical trials as a result of inconclusive or negative results or unforeseen complications in testing.
Changes in regulatory requirements and guidance may also occur and we may need to significantly amend clinical trial protocols to reflect these changes with appropriate regulatory authorities. Amendments may require us to renegotiate terms with CROs or resubmit clinical trial protocols to IRBs for re-examination, which may impact the costs, timing or successful completion of a clinical trial. Our clinical trials may be suspended or terminated at any time by the FDA, other regulatory authorities, the IRB overseeing the clinical trial at issue, any of our clinical trial sites with respect to that site, or us, due to a number of factors, including:
•failure to conduct the clinical trial in accordance with regulatory requirements or our clinical protocols;
•unforeseen safety issues or any determination that a clinical trial presents unacceptable health risks;
•lack of adequate funding to continue the clinical trial due to unforeseen costs or other business decisions; and
•upon a breach or pursuant to the terms of any agreement with, or for any other reason by, current or future collaborators that have responsibility for the clinical development of any of our product candidates.
Clinical trials of our product candidates are subject to partial or full clinical holds from time to time. A clinical hold may delay the timing of a clinical trial, or may require us to modify or discontinue such trial. Any failure or significant delay in completing clinical trials for our product candidates would adversely affect our ability to obtain regulatory approval and our commercial prospects and ability to generate product revenue will be diminished.
The results of previous clinical trials may not be predictive of future results, and interim or top line data may be subject to change or qualification, based on several factors, including a complete analysis of data, or in the case of interim analysis, the continued or ongoing accrual of data. In addition, the results of our current and planned clinical trials may not satisfy the requirements of the FDA or non-U.S. regulatory authorities.
Clinical failure can occur at any stage of clinical development. Clinical trials may produce negative or inconclusive results, and we or any of our current and future collaborators may decide, or regulators may require us, to conduct additional clinical or preclinical testing. Success in early clinical trials does not mean that future larger registration clinical trials will be successful because product candidates in later-stage clinical trials may fail to demonstrate sufficient safety and efficacy to the satisfaction of the FDA and non-U.S. regulatory authorities despite having progressed through initial clinical trials. A number of companies in the pharmaceutical industry, including those with greater resources and experience than us, have suffered significant setbacks in advanced clinical trials, even after obtaining promising results in earlier clinical trials.
We may publicly disclose top line or interim data from time to time, which is based on a preliminary analysis of then-available data, and the results and related findings and conclusions are subject to change following a more comprehensive review of the data related to the particular study or trial. For example, in October 2019 we announced second interim overall survival data for the SOPHIA trial of margetuximab for the treatment of certain metastatic breast cancer patients. The top line or interim results that we report may differ from future results of the same studies, or different conclusions or considerations may qualify such results, once additional data have been received and fully evaluated. Top line and interim data also remain subject to audit and verification procedures that may result in the final data being materially different from the preliminary data we previously published. In addition, the achievement of one primary endpoint for a trial does not guarantee that additional co-primary endpoints or secondary endpoints will be achieved. For example, the achievement by margetuximab of its first sequential endpoint for progression-free survival events in the SOPHIA trial does not indicate whether the second sequential endpoint of overall survival will be achieved. In particular, the second interim overall survival analysis, based on 270 events, did not show statistically significant results. We currently expect to receive final overall survival analysis in the second half of 2021, and such results may not show statistical significance. Failure to achieve statistical significance in this second sequential endpoint of overall survival in the SOPHIA trial may have an adverse effect on our ability to obtain or retain regulatory approval of margetuximab in the U.S. or in other jurisdictions.
We use novel technologies in the development of our product candidates and the FDA and other regulatory authorities have not approved products that utilize these technologies.
Our products in development are based on our technology platforms, including Fc Optimization, DART and TRIDENT technologies. Given the novelty of these technologies, we intend to work closely with the FDA and other regulatory authorities to perform the requisite scientific analyses and evaluation of our methods to obtain regulatory approval for our product candidates. Even though MARGENZA, which incorporates an Fc variation created using our Fc Optimization platform, was approved by the FDA, there is no assurance that the FDA will approve future product candidates using such technology. The validation process takes time and resources, may require independent third-party analyses, and may not be accepted by the FDA and other regulatory authorities. For some of our product candidates that are based on these technology platforms, the regulatory approval path and requirements may not be clear or evolve as more data becomes available for this product candidates, which could add significant delay and expense. Delays or failure to obtain regulatory approval of any of the product candidates that we develop would adversely affect our business.
We may not be successful in our efforts to use and expand our technology platforms to build a pipeline of product candidates. We may expend our limited resources to pursue a particular product candidate or indication and fail to capitalize on product candidates or indications that may be more profitable or for which there is a greater likelihood of success.
A key element of our strategy is to use and expand our technology platforms to build a pipeline of product candidates and progress several of these product candidates through clinical development for the treatment of a variety of different types of diseases. Although our research and development efforts to date have resulted in a pipeline of product candidates directed at various cancers, as well as autoimmune disorders and infectious diseases, we may not be able to develop product candidates that are safe and effective. Even if we are successful in continuing to build our pipeline, the potential product candidates that we identify may not be suitable for initial or continued clinical development, including as a result of being shown to have harmful side effects or other characteristics that indicate that they are unlikely to be products that will receive marketing approval and achieve market acceptance. If we do not continue to successfully develop and begin to commercialize product candidates, we will face difficulty in obtaining product revenues in future periods, which could result in significant harm to our financial position and adversely affect our stock price.
Because we have limited financial and managerial resources, we focus on research programs and product candidates that we identify for specific indications. As a result, we may forego or delay pursuit of opportunities with other product candidates or for other indications that later prove to have greater commercial potential. Our resource allocation decisions may cause us to fail to capitalize on viable commercial products or profitable market opportunities. Our spending on current and future research and development programs and product candidates for specific indications may not yield any commercially viable products. If we do not accurately evaluate the commercial potential or target market for a particular product candidate, we may relinquish valuable rights to that product candidate through collaboration, licensing or other royalty arrangements in cases in which it would have been more advantageous for us to retain sole development and commercialization rights.
We and/or our collaboration partners may never obtain approval or commercialize our products outside of the United States, which would limit our ability to realize their full market potential.
In order to market any products outside of the United States, we and our current and potential collaboration partners must establish and comply with numerous and varying regulatory requirements of other countries regarding safety and efficacy. Clinical trials conducted in one country may not be accepted by regulatory authorities in other countries, and regulatory approval in one country does not mean that regulatory approval will be obtained in any other country. Approval procedures vary among countries and may require additional preclinical studies or clinical trials or additional administrative review periods, which could result in significant delays, difficulties and costs for us. In addition, our failure to obtain regulatory approval in any country may delay or have negative effects on the process for regulatory approval in other countries. Although we obtained FDA approval or MARGENZA in December 2020, we do not have any product candidates approved for sale in any international market. If we fail to comply with regulatory requirements in international markets or to obtain and maintain required approvals, our target market will be reduced and our ability to realize the full market potential of our products will be harmed.
Our product candidates may have undesirable side effects which may delay or prevent further clinical development or marketing approval, or, if approval is received, require them to be taken off the market, require them to include safety warnings or otherwise limit their sales.
Although all of our product candidates have undergone or will undergo safety testing, not all adverse effects of drugs can be predicted or anticipated. Unforeseen side effects from any of our product candidates could arise either during clinical development or after the approved product has been marketed. Ongoing or future trials of our product candidates may not support the conclusion that one or more of these product candidates have acceptable safety profiles. The results of future clinical or preclinical trials may show that our product candidates cause undesirable or unacceptable side effects, which could interrupt, delay or halt clinical trials, and result in delay of, or failure to obtain, marketing approval from the FDA and other regulatory authorities, or result in marketing approval from the FDA and other regulatory authorities with restrictive label warnings or potential product liability claims.
If we or others later identify undesirable or unacceptable side effects caused by such products:
•regulatory authorities may require us to take our approved product off the market;
•regulatory authorities may require the addition of labeling statements, specific warnings, a contraindication or field alerts to physicians and pharmacies;
•we may be required to change the way the product is administered, impose other risk-management measures, conduct additional clinical trials or change the labeling of the product;
•we may be subject to limitations on how we may promote the product;
•sales of the product may decrease significantly;
•we may be subject to litigation or product liability claims; and
•our reputation may suffer.
For example, the prescribing information for MARGENZA include warnings and precautions for infusion-related reactions, as well as a boxed warning related to left ventricular dysfunction and embryo-fetal toxicity. Further, based on the identification of future adverse events, we may be required to further revise the prescribing information, including MARGENZA’s boxed warning, which could negatively impact sales of MARGENZA or adversely affect MARGENZA’s acceptance in the market.
Any of these events could prevent us, our collaborators or our potential future partners from achieving or maintaining market acceptance of the affected product or could substantially increase commercialization costs and expenses, which in turn could delay or prevent us from generating significant revenue from the sale of our products.
The manufacture of MARGENZA and our product candidates, for ourselves and our collaborators, is complex, and we may encounter difficulties in production. If we encounter any such difficulties, our ability to supply MARGENZA and our product candidates for clinical trials or, if approved, for commercial sale could be delayed or halted entirely, and our business, financial results, and reputation could be materially harmed.
MARGENZA is currently manufactured by a third party, and we are currently manufacturing retifanlimab and other product candidates for ourselves and our collaborators. The process of manufacturing MARGENZA and our product candidates for ourselves and our collaborators is extremely susceptible to delays or product loss due to a variety of factors, including but not limited to contamination, equipment failure, improper installation or operation of equipment, vendor or operator error, inconsistency in yields, variability in product characteristics, difficulties in scaling the production process, and vendor supply chain disruptions or fluctuations. Even minor deviations from manufacturing processes could result in reduced production yields, product defects and other supply disruptions. If microbial, viral or other contaminations are discovered in MARGENZA and our product candidates or in the manufacturing facilities in which MARGENZA and our product candidates are made, such manufacturing facilities may need to be closed for an extended period of time to investigate and remedy the contamination. Any adverse developments affecting manufacturing operations for MARGENZA and our product candidates, if any are approved, may result in shipment delays, inventory shortages, lot failures, product withdrawals or recalls, or other interruptions in the supply of our products. We may also have to take inventory write-offs and incur other charges and expenses for products that fail to meet specifications, undertake costly remediation efforts or seek more costly manufacturing alternatives. In addition, if we fail to supply required quantities of MARGENZA and a product candidate for one of our collaborators, our collaborator may terminate our agreement.
Although we currently maintain insurance coverage against damage to our property and to cover business interruption and research and development restoration expenses, our insurance coverage may not reimburse us, or may not be sufficient to reimburse us, for any expenses or losses we may suffer. If there were to be a catastrophic event or failure of our manufacturing facilities or processes, we may be unable to meet our requirements for supply of MARGENZA and our product candidates.
We have limited experience in large-scale or commercial manufacturing, and there can be no assurance that we will be able to effectively manufacture clinical or commercial quantities of our products.
We currently have two current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) manufacturing facilities located in Rockville, Maryland, one of which is a commercial scale facility which is intended to support future clinical and commercial production of our and our collaborators’ product candidates. Although some of our employees have experience in the manufacturing of pharmaceutical products from prior employment at other companies, we as a company have limited experience in large-scale manufacturing and no experience in commercial manufacturing. The design and build of a large scale manufacturing facility was time-consuming and expensive, and we may not realize the benefit of this investment. As a manufacturer of pharmaceutical products, we are required to demonstrate and maintain compliance with cGMPs which include requirements related to production processes, quality control and assurance and recordkeeping. Furthermore, establishing and maintaining manufacturing operations requires a reallocation of other resources, particularly the time and attention of certain of our senior management. Any failure or delay in our manufacturing capabilities could adversely impact the clinical development or commercialization of our or our collaborators’ product candidates.
Our manufacturing facilities are subject to significant government regulations and approvals, which are often costly and could result in adverse consequences to our business if we fail to comply with the regulations or maintain the approvals.
We must comply with the FDA’s cGMP requirements, as set out in statute, regulations and interpreted through guidance. We may encounter difficulties in achieving quality control and quality assurance and may experience shortages in qualified personnel. We are subject to inspections by the FDA and comparable agencies in other jurisdictions to confirm compliance with applicable regulatory requirements. See “Other U.S. Post-Marketing Regulatory Requirements” above for additional information. Any failure to follow cGMP or other regulatory requirements or delay, interruption or other issues that arise in the manufacture, fill-finish, packaging, or storage of our product or product candidates as a result of a failure of our facilities or the facilities or operations of third parties to comply with regulatory requirements or pass any regulatory authority inspection could significantly impair our ability to develop and commercialize our product or product candidates, including leading to significant delays in the availability of drug product for sale and our clinical trials or the termination or hold on a clinical trial, or the delay or prevention of a filing or approval of marketing applications for our product candidates. Significant noncompliance could also result in the imposition of sanctions, including fines, injunctions, civil penalties, failure of regulatory authorities to grant marketing approvals for our product candidates, delays, suspension or withdrawal of approvals, license revocation, seizures or recalls of products, operating restrictions and criminal prosecutions, any of which could damage our reputation or negatively impact a product’s commercial success. If we are not able to maintain regulatory compliance, we may not be permitted to market our product candidates and/or may be subject to product recalls, seizures, injunctions, or criminal prosecution.
Reimbursement decisions by third-party payors may have an adverse effect on pricing and market acceptance. If there is not sufficient reimbursement for our products, it is less likely that our products will be widely used.
Market acceptance and sales of our products and product candidates, if approved for sale by the appropriate regulatory authorities, may depend on reimbursement policies and may be affected by future healthcare reform measures. Government authorities and third-party payors, such as private health insurers and health maintenance organizations, decide which drugs they will reimburse and establish payment levels and, in some cases, utilization management strategies, such as tiered formularies and prior authorization. We cannot be certain that reimbursement will be available for our products or any products that we develop or that the reimbursement level will be adequate to allow us to operate profitably. Also, we cannot be certain that reimbursement policies will not reduce the demand for, or the price paid for, our products. Our ability to commercialize our products may depend, in part, on the extent to which reimbursement for the products will be available from government authorities and third-party payors. If reimbursement for our products is not available or is available on a limited basis, or if the reimbursement amount for our products is inadequate, we may not be able to successfully commercialize any of our approved products.
There is significant uncertainty related to third-party payor coverage and reimbursement of newly approved products. In the United States, for example, principal decisions about reimbursement for new products are typically made by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). CMS decides whether and to what extent a new product will be covered and reimbursed under Medicare, and private third-party
payors often follow CMS’s decisions regarding coverage and reimbursement to a substantial degree. However, one third-party payor’s determination to provide coverage for a product candidate does not assure that other payors will also provide coverage for the product candidate. Further, no uniform policy for coverage and reimbursement exists in the United States, and coverage and reimbursement can differ significantly from payor to payor. As a result, the coverage and reimbursement determination process is often time-consuming and costly. This process may require us to provide scientific and clinical information to support the coverage or reimbursement of our products to each third-party payor separately, with no assurance that coverage and adequate reimbursement will be applied consistently or obtained in the first instance.
As federal and state governments implement additional health care cost containment measures, including measures to lower prescription drug pricing, we cannot be sure that MARGENZA and our product candidates, if approved, will be covered, or remain covered, by private or public payors, and if covered, whether the reimbursement will be perceived by product purchasers as adequate. Health reform actions by federal and state governments and health plans may put additional downward pressure on pharmaceutical pricing and health care costs, which could negatively impact coverage and reimbursement for MARGENZA and our product candidates, if approved, our revenue, and our ability to compete with other marketed products and to recoup the costs of our research and development.
Increasingly, third-party payors are requiring that drug companies provide them with predetermined discounts from list prices and are challenging the prices charged for medical products. Further, such payors are increasingly challenging the price, examining the medical necessity and reviewing the cost effectiveness of medical products . There may be especially significant delays in obtaining coverage and reimbursement for newly approved drugs. Third-party payors may limit coverage to specific products and product candidates on an approved list, known as a formulary, which might not include all FDA-approved drugs for a particular indication. We may need to conduct expensive pharmaco-economic studies to demonstrate the medical necessity and cost effectiveness of our products. Nonetheless, our products may not be considered medically necessary or cost effective. We cannot be sure that coverage and reimbursement will be available for any approved product that we commercialize and, if reimbursement is available, what the level of reimbursement will be. Further, coverage policies and third-party payor reimbursement rates may change at any time. Even if favorable coverage and reimbursement status is attained, less favorable coverage policies and reimbursement rates may be implemented in the future.
Actual or anticipated changes to the laws and regulations governing the health care system may have a negative impact on cost and access to health insurance coverage and reimbursement of healthcare items and services.
The United States and several foreign jurisdictions are considering, or have already enacted, a number of legislative and regulatory proposals to change the healthcare system in ways that could affect our ability to sell any of our future approved products profitably. Among policy makers and payors in the United States and elsewhere, there is significant interest in promoting changes in healthcare systems with the stated goals of containing healthcare costs through lowering prescription drug prices, improving quality and/or expanding access to healthcare. In the United States, the pharmaceutical industry has been a particular focus of these efforts and has been significantly affected by major legislative initiatives, including the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (collectively, the ACA), which became law in 2010. While it is difficult to assess the impact of the ACA in isolation, either in general or on our business specifically, it is widely thought that the ACA increases the likelihood of downward pressure on pharmaceutical reimbursement, which could negatively affect market acceptance of, and the price we may charge for, any products we develop that receive regulatory approval. Further, the United State and foreign governments regularly consider additional reform measures that affect healthcare coverage and costs. Such reforms may include changes to the coverage and reimbursement of healthcare services and products. In particular, there have been recent executive, judicial and Congressional challenges to the ACA, which could have an impact on coverage and reimbursement for healthcare services covered by plans authorized by the ACA.
While Congress has not passed comprehensive repeal legislation, several bills affecting the implementation of certain taxes under the ACA have been signed into law. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, or Tax Act, included a provision which repealed, effective January 1, 2019, the tax-based shared responsibility payment imposed by the ACA on certain individuals who fail to maintain qualifying health coverage for all or part of a year that is commonly referred to as the “individual mandate.” The United States Supreme Court is currently reviewing the constitutionality of the ACA, although it is unclear when a decision will be made. Although the U.S. Supreme Court has yet ruled on the constitutionality of the ACA, on January 28, 2021, President Biden issued an executive order to initiate a special enrollment period from February 15, 2021 through May 15, 2021 for purposes of obtaining health insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act marketplace. The executive order also instructs certain governmental agencies to review and reconsider their existing policies and rules that limit access to healthcare, including among others, reexamining Medicaid demonstration projects and waiver programs that include work requirements, and policies that create unnecessary barriers to obtaining access to health insurance coverage through Medicaid or
the Affordable Care Act. It is unclear how the Supreme Court ruling, other such litigation and the healthcare reform measures of the Biden administration will impact the ACA and our business.
Further, there has been heightened governmental scrutiny in the United States of pharmaceutical pricing practices in light of the rising cost of prescription drugs. Such scrutiny has resulted in several recent congressional inquiries and proposed and enacted federal and state legislation designed to, among other things, bring more transparency to product pricing, review the relationship between pricing and manufacturer patient programs, and reform government program reimbursement methodologies for products. For example, on November 20, 2020, CMS issued an interim final rule implementing former President Trump’s Most Favored Nation executive order, which would tie Medicare Part B payments for certain physician-administered drugs to the lowest price paid in other economically advanced countries, effective January 1, 2021. On December 28, 2020, the United States District Court in Northern California issued a nationwide preliminary injunction against implementation of the interim final rule. However, it is unclear whether the Biden administration will work to reverse these measures or pursue similar policy initiatives. Further, it is possible that additional governmental action is taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
We cannot predict what healthcare initiatives, if any, will be implemented at the federal or state level, however, government and other regulatory oversight and future regulatory and government interference with the healthcare systems could adversely impact our business and results of operations.
We expect to experience pricing pressures in connection with the sale of any products that we develop, due to the trend toward managed healthcare, the increasing influence of various and evolving payor models and additional legislative proposals.
Inadequate funding for the FDA and other government agencies could hinder their ability to hire and retain key leadership and other personnel, prevent new products and services from being developed or commercialized in a timely manner or otherwise prevent those agencies from performing normal business functions on which the operation of our business may rely, which could negatively impact our business.
The ability of the FDA to review and approve new products can be affected by a variety of factors, including government budget and funding levels, ability to hire and retain key personnel and accept the payment of user fees, and statutory, regulatory and policy changes. Average review times at the agency have fluctuated in recent years as a result. In addition, government funding of other government agencies on which our operations may rely, including those that fund research and development activities is subject to the political process, which is inherently fluid and unpredictable.
Disruptions at the FDA and other agencies may also slow the time necessary for new drugs to be reviewed and/or approved by necessary government agencies, which would adversely affect our business. For example, over the last several years, the U.S. government has shut down several times and certain regulatory agencies, such as the FDA, have had to furlough critical FDA, and other government employees and pause or stop critical activities. If a prolonged government shutdown occurs, it could significantly impact the ability of the FDA to timely review and process our regulatory submissions, which could have a material adverse effect on our business.
If any product liability lawsuits are successfully brought against us or any of our collaborators, we may incur substantial liabilities and may be required to limit commercialization of our products or product candidates.
We face an inherent risk of product liability lawsuits related to the sale of our products to, use of our products by, and testing of our product candidates in, seriously ill patients. Product liability claims may be brought against us or our collaborators by participants enrolled in our clinical trials, patients, health care providers or others using, administering or selling any of our approved products. If we cannot successfully defend ourselves against any such claims, we may incur substantial liabilities. Regardless of their merit or eventual outcome, liability claims may result in:
•decreased demand for our future approved products;
•injury to our reputation;
•withdrawal of clinical trial participants;
•termination of clinical trial sites or entire trial programs;
•increased regulatory scrutiny;
•significant litigation costs;
•substantial monetary awards to or costly settlement with patients or other claimants;
•product recalls or a change in the indications for which they may be used;
•loss of revenue;
•diversion of management and scientific resources from our business operations; and
•the inability to commercialize our product candidates.
With respect to MARGENZA and any of our other product candidates that are approved for commercial sale, we are, and will be, highly dependent upon physician and patient perceptions of us and the safety and quality of our products. We could be adversely affected if we are subject to negative publicity. We could also be adversely affected if any of our products or any similar products distributed by other companies prove to be, or are asserted to be, harmful to patients. Because of our dependence upon consumer perceptions, any adverse publicity associated with illness or other adverse effects resulting from patients’ use or misuse of our products or any similar products distributed by other companies could have a material adverse impact on our financial condition or results of operations.
As of December 31, 2020, we hold $20 million in product liability insurance coverage in the aggregate, with a per incident limit of $20 million, which may not be adequate to cover all liabilities that we may incur. We may need to increase our insurance coverage when we begin the commercialization of our product candidates. Insurance coverage is becoming increasingly expensive. As a result, we may be unable to maintain or obtain sufficient insurance at a reasonable cost to protect us against losses that could have a material adverse effect on our business. A successful product liability claim or series of claims brought against us, particularly if judgments exceed any insurance coverage we may have, could decrease our cash resources and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operation.
Our contract with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) makes us a government contractor. Laws and regulations affecting government contracts may make it more costly and difficult for us to successfully conduct our business.
We must comply with numerous laws and regulations relating to the procurement, formation, administration and performance of government contracts. Failure to comply with these laws could result in significant civil and criminal penalties. Among the most significant government contracting regulations that may affect our business are: the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and NIH-NIAID-specific regulations supplemental to the FAR, which comprehensively regulate the procurement, formation, administration and performance of government contracts; business ethics and public integrity obligations, which govern conflicts of interest and the hiring of former government employees, restrict the granting of gratuities and funding of lobbying activities and incorporate other requirements such as the Anti-Kickback Act, the Procurement Integrity Act, and the False Claims Act; export and import control laws and regulations; and laws, regulations and executive orders restricting the use and dissemination of sensitive information we may receive pursuant to our performance of the government contract. U.S. government agencies routinely audit and investigate government contractors for compliance with applicable laws and standards. If we are audited, such audit could result in disallowance of expected cost reimbursement, or if such audit were to uncover improper or illegal activities, we could be subject to civil and criminal penalties, administrative sanctions, including suspension or debarment from government contracting and significant reputational harm.
Changes in U.S. tax law may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations, and changes in international trade relations may have a material adverse effect on the commercialization of some or all of our product candidates.
Changes in laws and policy relating to taxes may have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. Recent tax reforms in the United States have resulted in significant changes to preexisting U.S. tax rules and regulations. These changes may trigger an adverse effect on our business, financial conditions and results of operations.
Additionally, the U.S. government may seek to implement more protective trade measures with countries in which we plan to conduct business in, with great deal of uncertainty regarding trade policies, tariffs and government regulations, which if altered could have the potential to create a significant adverse effect on trade between the United States and other countries. Overall, changes in international trade relations, such as the imposition of or increase in tariffs or other trade barriers, could
materially and adversely impact our costs, the ability to make sales of our product candidates to any of our significant customers in other countries, and reduce the competitiveness of our product candidates.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had, and may continue to have, a material impact on our clinical trials, preclinical studies, commercialization of MARGENZA, manufacturing, development and commercialization of our product candidates and other aspects of our business, staff, and operations, which in turn may, materially adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and liquidity. The extent to which the COVID-19 pandemic continues to adversely affect our business, staff, operations, financial condition, results of operations and liquidity, will depend on future developments, including the measures taken by public and private entities in response to the pandemic, which remain highly uncertain and cannot be predicted.
Public health crises such as pandemics or similar outbreaks could adversely impact our business. The COVID-19 pandemic, which is continuing to evolve, and to date has led to the implementation of various responses, including government-imposed quarantines, work and travel restrictions and other public health safety measures at the federal, state and local levels.
The continued spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has had, and may continue to have, a material impact on our clinical trials, preclinical studies, commercialization efforts, manufacturing and development of our product candidates and other aspects of our business, staff, and operations, which in turn may impact our financial condition, results of operations and liquidity. For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic impaired the ability to enroll patients in clinical trials, continue ongoing clinical trials or activate clinical trial sites, and MARGENZA commercialization, due to, for example, heightened exposure to COVID-19 if an outbreak occurs in a specific geography, the shifting of healthcare resources toward the pandemic or the closing of or limiting of access to clinical facilities, and reduced or non-existent in-person access to physicians and health care centers. Furthermore, patients may be unable or unwilling to enroll in our clinical trials or be unable to comply with clinical trial protocols if COVID-19 related restrictions impede patient movement or interrupt healthcare services. Government-imposed quarantines and other restrictions may also require us to temporarily suspend activity at our clinical sites. The COVID-19 pandemic may also negatively affect the operations of third-party CROs that we rely upon to carry out our clinical trials, or the operations of other service providers, which could result in delays or disruptions in the supply of our product candidates or other aspects of our business or that of our collaborators. Any negative impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had, or will have, on patient enrollment or treatment or the timing and execution of our clinical trials could cause delays to our clinical trial activities, which could adversely affect our ability to seek and obtain regulatory approval for and to commercialize any approved product candidates, increase our operating expenses and have a material adverse effect on our business and financial results. In particular, enrollment of our registrational path trial of flotetuzumab has been slower than expected due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Further, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the risk that a portion of the workforce, including ours, may suffer illness or otherwise be unable to work due to close contact related precautions. There has been limited business impact from COVID-19 related absences, but there can be no assurance that there will not be additional or significant employee COVID-19 related absences with negative business impact in the future. We have maintained an on-site workforce and implemented stay-at-home orders consistent with the requirements of the jurisdictions in which we operate, with arrangements such as remote work and flexible schedules for certain functions, as well as other measures intended to reduce the risks to our employees from the impact of the pandemic while maintaining our operations.
We may also face increased cybersecurity risks due to the shifting of a majority of our corporate functions operating remotely in regions impacted by stay-at-home orders. Increased levels of remote access may create additional opportunities for cybercriminals to attempt to exploit vulnerabilities, and our employees may be more susceptible to phishing and social engineering attempts.
The extent to which the COVID-19 pandemic impacts our business, staff, operations, financial condition, results of operations and liquidity, or those of our collaborators, will largely depend on future developments, which are highly uncertain and cannot be predicted, such as the duration of the pandemic, new information that may emerge concerning the severity of COVID-19 or the effectiveness of actions to contain COVID-19 or treat its impact, among others. We cannot presently predict the scope and severity of any potential government or business shutdowns or disruptions. If we or any of the third parties with whom we engage experience shutdowns or other business disruptions, our ability to conduct our business in the manner and on the timelines presently planned could be materially and negatively affected, which could have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Risks Related to Our Financial Position and Need for Additional Capital
We have incurred significant losses since inception and anticipate that we will continue to incur losses for the foreseeable future. Our first commercial product was only recently approved. We may never achieve or sustain profitability.
We have incurred significant losses since our inception. As of December 31, 2020, our accumulated deficit was approximately $771.8 million. We expect to continue to incur losses for the foreseeable future, and we expect these losses to increase as we continue our research and development of, and seek regulatory approvals for, our product candidates, prepare for and begin to commercialize any approved products, and add infrastructure and personnel to support our product development efforts and operations as a public company. The net losses and negative cash flows incurred to date, together with expected future losses, have had, and likely will continue to have, an adverse effect on our stockholders' deficit and working capital. The amount of future net losses will depend, in part, on the rate of future growth of our expenses and our ability to generate revenue.
Because of the numerous risks and uncertainties associated with pharmaceutical product development and commercialization, we are unable to accurately predict the timing or amount of increased expenses or when, or if, we will be able to achieve profitability. For example, our expenses could increase if we are required by the FDA to perform trials in addition to those that we currently expect to perform, or if there are any delays in completing our currently planned clinical trials or in the development of any of our product candidates. Our expenses would significantly increase to the extent we build out a sales force and other commercially relevant functions to support the commercialization of MARGENZA or any of our product candidates.
To become and remain profitable, we must succeed in developing and commercializing products with significant market potential. For example, revenues from MARGENZA may not be sufficient to enable us to reach profitability. In order to commercialize any additional product candidates, we will need to be successful in a range of challenging activities for which we are only in the preliminary stages, including developing product candidates, obtaining regulatory approval for them, and manufacturing, marketing and selling approved products and product candidates for which we may obtain regulatory approval. We may never succeed in these activities and may never generate revenue from product sales that is significant enough to achieve profitability. Even if we achieve profitability in the future, we may not be able to sustain profitability in subsequent periods. Our failure to become or remain profitable would depress our market value and could impair our ability to raise capital, expand our business, develop other product candidates, or continue our operations. A decline in the value of our company could also cause you to lose all or part of your investment.
We will require substantial additional funding, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms, or at all, and, if not available, may require us to delay, scale back, or cease our product development programs or operations.
We are advancing our product candidates through clinical development and are commercializing MARGENZA in collaboration with EVERSANA. Developing and commercializing pharmaceutical products, including conducting preclinical studies and clinical trials, is expensive. In order to obtain such regulatory approval, we will be required to conduct clinical trials for each indication for each of our product candidates. We will continue to require additional funding beyond what was raised in our public offerings and through our collaborations and license agreements to complete the development and commercialization of our product candidates and to continue to advance the development of our other product candidates, and such funding may not be available on acceptable terms or at all. Although it is difficult to predict our funding requirements, based upon our current operating plan, we anticipate that our cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities as of December 31, 2020, combined with anticipated and potential collaboration payments, will enable us to fund our operations into 2023, assuming all of our programs and collaborations advance as currently contemplated. Because successful commercialization of MARGENZA and development of our product candidates is uncertain, we are unable to estimate the actual funds we will require to commercialize MARGENZA and complete research, development and clinical testing to commercialize our product candidates.
Our future funding requirements will depend on many factors, including but not limited to:
•the number and characteristics of other product candidates and indications that we pursue;
•the scope, progress, timing, cost and results of research, preclinical development, and clinical trials;
•the costs, timing and outcome of seeking and obtaining FDA and non-U.S. regulatory approvals;
•the costs associated with manufacturing our product candidates;
•the costs of establishing sales, marketing, and distribution capabilities;
•our ability to maintain, expand, and defend the scope of our intellectual property portfolio, including the amount and timing of any payments we may be required to make in connection with the licensing, filing, defense and enforcement of any patents or other intellectual property rights;
•our need and ability to hire additional management, scientific, and medical personnel;
•the effect of competing products that may limit market penetration of our product candidates;
•our need to implement additional internal systems and infrastructure, including financial and reporting systems; and
•the economic and other terms, timing of and success of our existing collaborations, and any collaboration, licensing, or other arrangements into which we may enter in the future, including the timing of receipt of any milestone or royalty payments under these agreements.
Until we can generate a sufficient amount of product revenue to finance our cash requirements, which we may never do, we expect to finance future cash needs primarily through a combination of public or private equity offerings, debt financings, strategic collaborations, and grant funding. If sufficient funds on acceptable terms are not available when needed, or at all, we could be forced to significantly reduce operating expenses and delay, scale back or eliminate one or more of our development programs or our business operations.
Raising additional capital may cause dilution to our stockholders, restrict our operations or require us to relinquish substantial rights.
To the extent that we raise additional capital through the sale of equity or convertible debt securities, your ownership interest will be diluted, and the terms of these new securities may include liquidation or other preferences that adversely affect your rights as a common stockholder. Debt financing, if available at all, may involve agreements that include covenants limiting or restricting our ability to take specific actions such as incurring additional debt, making capital expenditures, or declaring dividends. If we raise additional funds through collaborations, strategic alliances, or licensing arrangements with third parties, we may have to relinquish valuable rights to our technologies, MARGENZA, product candidates, or future revenue streams, or grant licenses on terms that are not favorable to us. We cannot assure you that we will be able to obtain additional funding if and when necessary. If we are unable to obtain adequate financing on a timely basis, we could be required to delay, scale back or eliminate one or more of our development programs or grant rights to develop and market MARGENZA or product candidates that we would otherwise prefer to develop and market ourselves.
Our ability to use our net operating loss carryforwards and other tax attributes may be limited.
Our ability to utilize our federal net operating losses (NOLs) and federal tax credits is currently limited, and may be limited further, under Sections 382 and 383 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended. The limitations apply if an ownership change, as defined by Section 382, occurs. Generally, an ownership change occurs when certain shareholders increase their aggregate ownership by more than 50 percentage points over their lowest ownership percentage in a testing period, which is typically three years or since the last ownership change. We are already subject to Section 382 limitations due to acquisitions we made in 2002 and 2008. As of December 31, 2020, we had federal and state NOL carryforwards of $648 million and federal research and development tax credits of $69.6 million available. Future changes in stock ownership may also trigger an ownership change and, consequently, another Section 382 limitation. Any limitation may result in expiration of a portion of the net operating loss or tax credit carryforwards before utilization which would reduce our gross deferred income tax assets and corresponding valuation allowance. As a result, if we earn net taxable income, our ability to use our pre-change NOL carryforwards and tax credit carryforwards to reduce United States federal income tax may be subject to limitations, which could potentially result in increased future cash tax liability to us.
Risks Related to Our Dependence on Third Parties
Our existing therapeutic collaborations are important to our business, and future collaborations may also be important to us. If we are unable to maintain any of these collaborations, or if these collaborations are not successful, our business could be adversely affected.
We have limited capabilities for drug development and have little to no internal capability for sales, marketing or distribution. We have entered into collaborations with other companies that we believe can provide such capabilities, including our agreements with, for example, Incyte Corporation, Zai Lab Limited and I-Mab Biopharma. These current collaborations also have provided us with important funding for our development programs and technology platforms and we expect to receive
additional funding under these collaborations in the future. Our existing therapeutic collaborations, and any future collaborations we enter into, may pose a number of risks, including the following:
•collaborators have significant discretion in determining the efforts and resources that they will apply to these collaborations;
•collaborators may not perform their obligations as expected;
•collaborators may not pursue development and commercialization of any product candidates that achieve regulatory approval or may elect not to continue or renew development or commercialization programs based on clinical trial results, changes in the collaborators' strategic focus or available funding, or external factors, such as an acquisition, that divert resources or create competing priorities;
•collaborators may delay clinical trials, provide insufficient funding for a clinical trial program, stop a clinical trial or abandon a product candidate, repeat or conduct new clinical trials or require a new formulation of a product candidate for clinical testing;
•collaborators could independently develop, or develop with third parties, products that compete directly or indirectly with our products or product candidates if the collaborators believe that competitive products are more likely to be successfully developed or can be commercialized under terms that are more economically attractive than ours;
•product candidates discovered in collaboration with us may be viewed by our collaborators as competitive with their own product candidates or products, which may cause collaborators to cease to devote resources to the commercialization of our product candidates;
•a collaborator with marketing and distribution rights to one or more of our product candidates that achieve regulatory approval may not commit sufficient resources to the marketing and distribution of such product or products;
•disagreements with collaborators, including disagreements over proprietary rights, contract interpretation or the preferred course of development, might cause delays or termination of the research, development or commercialization of product candidates, might lead to additional responsibilities for us with respect to product candidates, or might result in litigation or arbitration, any of which would be time-consuming and expensive;
•collaborators may not properly maintain or defend our intellectual property rights or may use our proprietary information in such a way as to invite litigation that could jeopardize or invalidate our intellectual property or proprietary information or expose us to potential litigation;
•collaborators may infringe the intellectual property rights of third parties, which may expose us to litigation and potential liability; and
•collaborations may be terminated for the convenience of the collaborator and, if terminated, we could be required to raise additional capital to pursue further development or commercialization of the applicable product candidates. For example, each of our collaboration and license agreements may be terminated for convenience upon the completion of a specified notice period.
If our therapeutic collaborations do not result in the successful development and commercialization of products or if one of our collaborators terminates its agreement with us, we may not receive any future research funding or milestone or royalty payments under the collaboration. For example, in January 2020 our arrangement terminated with Les Laboratoires Servier and Institut de Recherches Servier (collectively, Servier), to which we had previously granted exclusive options to obtain three separate exclusive licenses to develop and commercialize DART molecules. All of the risks relating to product development, regulatory approval and commercialization described in this Annual Report on Form 10-K also apply to the activities of our program collaborators.
Additionally, subject to its contractual obligations to us, if one of our collaborators is involved in a business combination, the collaborator might de-emphasize or terminate the development or commercialization of MARGENZA or any product candidate licensed to it by us. If one of our collaborators terminates its agreement with us, we may find it more difficult to attract new collaborators.
For MARGENZA and our product candidates, we may in the future determine to collaborate with additional pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies for development and potential commercialization. We face significant competition in seeking appropriate collaborators. Our ability to reach a definitive agreement for a collaboration will depend, among other things, upon our assessment of the collaborator’s resources and expertise, the terms and conditions of the proposed collaboration and the proposed collaborator’s evaluation of a number of factors. These factors may include the design or results of clinical trials, the likelihood of approval by the FDA or similar regulatory authorities outside the United States, the potential market for MARGENZA or the subject product candidate, the costs and complexities of manufacturing and delivering MARGENZA or such product candidate to patients, the potential of competing products, the existence of uncertainty with respect to our ownership of technology, which can exist if there is a challenge to such ownership without regard to the merits of the challenge and industry and market conditions generally. The collaborator may also consider alternative products, product candidates or technologies for similar indications that may be available to collaborate on and whether such a collaboration could be more attractive than the one with us for MARGENZA or our product candidate.
Collaborations are complex and time-consuming to negotiate and document. In addition, there have been a significant number of recent business combinations among large pharmaceutical companies that have resulted in a reduced number of potential future collaborators. If we are unable to reach agreements with suitable collaborators on a timely basis, on acceptable terms, or at all, we may have to curtail the development of MARGENZA or a product candidate, reduce or delay one or more of our other development programs, delay the commercialization of MARGENZA or a product candidate or reduce the scope of any sales or marketing activities, or increase our expenditures and undertake development or commercialization activities at our own expense. If we elect to fund and undertake development or commercialization activities on our own, we may need to obtain additional expertise and additional capital, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms or at all. If we fail to enter into collaborations and do not have sufficient funds or expertise to undertake the necessary development and commercialization activities, we may not be able to further develop MARGENZA or our product candidates or bring them to market or continue to develop our technology platforms and our business may be materially and adversely affected.
We may also be restricted under collaboration agreements from entering into additional agreements on certain terms with potential collaborators. Most of our existing therapeutic collaborations contain a restriction on our engaging in activities that are the subject of the collaboration with third parties for specified periods of time.
Independent clinical investigators and CROs that we engage to conduct our clinical trials may not devote sufficient time or attention to our clinical trials or be able to repeat their past success.
We expect to continue to depend on independent clinical investigators and CROs to conduct our clinical trials. CROs may also assist us in the collection and analysis of data. There is a limited number of third-party service providers that specialize or have the expertise required to achieve our business objectives. Identifying, qualifying and managing performance of third-party service providers can be difficult, time consuming and cause delays in our development programs. These investigators and CROs will not be our employees and we will not be able to control, other than by contract, the amount of resources, including time, which they devote to our product candidates and clinical trials. If independent investigators or CROs fail to devote sufficient resources to the development of our product candidates, or if their performance is substandard, it may delay or compromise the prospects for approval and commercialization of any product candidates that we develop. In addition, the use of third-party service providers requires us to disclose our proprietary information to these parties, which could increase the risk that this information will be misappropriated. Further, the FDA requires that we comply with standards, commonly referred to as current Good Clinical Practice (GCP) for conducting, recording and reporting clinical trials to assure that data and reported results are credible and accurate and that the rights, integrity and confidentiality of trial subjects are protected. Failure of clinical investigators or CROs to meet their obligations to us or comply with GCP procedures could adversely affect the clinical development of our product candidates and harm our business.
Failure of third-party contractors and/or our inability to successfully develop and commercialize companion diagnostics for use with our product candidates could harm our ability to commercialize our product candidates.
We plan to develop companion diagnostics for our product candidates where appropriate. At least in some cases, the FDA and similar regulatory authorities outside the United States may request or require the development and regulatory approval of a companion diagnostic as a condition to approving one or more of our product candidates. We do not have experience or capabilities in developing or commercializing diagnostics and are relying, and in the future plan to continue to rely, in large part on third parties to perform these functions.
In most cases, we will likely outsource the development, production and commercialization of companion diagnostics to third parties. By outsourcing these companion diagnostics to third parties, we become dependent on the efforts of our third party contractors to successfully develop and commercialize these companion diagnostics. Our contractors:
•may not perform their obligations as expected;
•may encounter production difficulties that could constrain the supply of the companion diagnostic;
•may have difficulties gaining acceptance of the use of the companion diagnostic in the clinical community;
•may not commit sufficient resources to the marketing and distribution of such product; and
•may terminate their relationship with us.
If any companion diagnostic for use with one of our product candidates fails to gain market acceptance, our ability to derive revenues from sales of such product candidate could be harmed. If our third party contractors fail to commercialize such companion diagnostic, we may not be able to enter into arrangements with another diagnostic company to obtain supplies of an alternative diagnostic test for use in connection with such product candidate or do so on commercially reasonable terms, which could adversely affect and delay the development or commercialization of such product candidate.
We currently contract with third parties for the manufacturing of MARGENZA and we expect to contract with third parties for the manufacture of some of our product candidates for clinical testing in the future in addition to commercialization. This reliance on third parties increases the risk that we will not have sufficient quantities of our product candidates or products or such quantities at an acceptable cost, which could delay, prevent or impair our development or commercialization efforts.
We currently have two cGMP manufacturing facilities located in Rockville, Maryland, one of which was completed in 2018 and is designed to increase our internal capacity to manufacture more drug substance lots, at larger scale and in full compliance with cGMP to support future clinical and commercial production of our and our collaborators’ product candidates. We manufacture drug substance lots at these facilities that we use for research and development purposes and for clinical trials of our and our collaborators’ product candidates. Although we believe we currently have capacity to produce all of the material required for our and our collaborators’ clinical trials, we may not be able to do so in the future, and may rely on arrangements with third parties. Our current facilities may also be insufficient to support our needs for commercial quantities of MARGENZA and such candidates, and we may rely on arrangements with third parties. We have limited experience in manufacturing products at commercial scale.
We have entered into agreements with contract manufacturing organizations to supplement our clinical supply and internal capacity as we commercialize MARGENZA and advance our product candidate pipeline. MARGENZA is currently manufactured by third parties. In the future, we may transition some of the manufacturing of MARGENZA to our internal facilities. We may use third parties for the manufacture of some of our product candidates for clinical testing, as well as for commercial manufacture of some of our product candidates that receive marketing approval and that are not manufactured by us or one of our third party collaborators. We have entered into supply agreements with manufacturers for commercial supply and may in the future enter into one or more additional supply agreements for our product candidates. We may be unable to reach agreement with any of these contract manufacturers, or to identify and reach arrangements on satisfactory terms with other contract manufacturers, to manufacture any of our product candidates. Additionally, the facilities used by any contract manufacturer to manufacture any of our product candidates must be the subject of a satisfactory inspection before the FDA and other regulatory authorities approve a BLA or marketing authorization for the product candidate manufactured at that facility. We will depend on these third-party manufacturing partners for compliance with the FDA’s requirements for the manufacture of our finished products. If our manufacturers cannot successfully manufacture material that conforms to our specifications and the FDA and other regulatory authorities’ cGMP requirements, our product candidates will not be approved or, if already approved, may be subject to recalls.
Reliance on third-party manufacturers entails risks to which we would not be subject if we manufactured MARGENZA or the product candidates ourselves, including:
•the possibility of a breach of the manufacturing agreements by the third parties because of factors beyond our control;
•the possibility of termination or nonrenewal of the agreements by the third parties before we are able to arrange for a qualified replacement third-party manufacturer; and
•the possibility that we may not be able to secure a manufacturer or manufacturing capacity in a timely manner and on satisfactory terms in order to meet our manufacturing needs.
Any of these factors could cause adversely impact the commercialization of MARGENZA and the delay of approval or commercialization of our product candidates, cause us to incur higher costs or prevent us from commercializing our product candidates successfully. Furthermore, if contract manufacturers fail to deliver the required commercial quantities of finished product on a timely basis and at commercially reasonable prices, and we are unable to find one or more replacement manufacturers capable of production at a substantially equivalent cost, in substantially equivalent volumes and quality and on a timely basis, we would likely be unable to meet demand for our products and could lose potential revenue. It may take several years to establish an alternative source of supply for MARGENZA or our product candidates and to have any such new source approved by the FDA or any other relevant regulatory authorities.
Our commercialization collaboration with EVERSANA for MARGENZA is important to our business, and future commercialization collaborations may also be important to us. If we are unable to maintain this or other commercialization collaborations, or if commercialization collaborations are not successful, our business could be adversely affected.
We have limited capabilities for drug commercialization, with little to no internal capability for sales, marketing or distribution. We have entered into a collaboration with EVERSANA for the commercialization of MARGENZA in the United States that we believe can provide such capabilities, and may enter into commercial collaborations in the future for MARGENZA or our product candidates. Our existing commercialization collaboration, and any future commercialization collaborations we enter into, may pose a number of risks, including the following:
•collaborators may have significant discretion in determining the efforts and resources that they will apply to these collaborations;
•collaborators may not perform their obligations as expected;
•collaborators may not pursue commercialization of MARGENZA or any product candidates that achieve regulatory approval or may elect not to continue commercialization based on clinical trial results, changes in the collaborators' strategic focus or other factors that divert resources or create competing priorities;
•collaborators could independently commercialize products that compete directly or indirectly with our products or product candidates if the collaborators believe that competitive products are more likely to be successfully commercialized under terms that are more economically attractive than ours;
•collaborators with marketing and distribution rights to MARGENZA or our product candidates that achieve regulatory approval may not commit sufficient resources to the marketing and distribution of such product or products;
•disagreements with collaborators, including disagreements on contract interpretation, commercialization strategy or tactics, might cause delays or termination of the commercialization of MARGENZA or product candidates, might lead to additional responsibilities for us with respect to MARGENZA or product candidates, or might result in litigation or arbitration, any of which would be time-consuming and expensive;
•collaborators may not properly utilize our intellectual property rights or may use our proprietary information in such a way as to invite litigation that could jeopardize or invalidate our intellectual property or proprietary information or expose us to potential litigation;
•collaborators may violate, or be investigated for potentially violating, health care compliance and related laws and regulations, which may expose us to litigation, enforcement actions or inquiries, or other potential liability; and
•collaborations may be terminated for the convenience of the collaborator and, if terminated, we could be required to raise additional capital to pursue further commercialization of MARGNEZA or applicable product candidates.
All of the risks relating to commercialization, and health care legal compliance described in this Annual Report on Form 10-K also apply to the commercialization activities of our collaborators.
Additionally, subject to its contractual obligations to us, if one of our collaborators is involved in a business combination, the collaborator might de-emphasize or terminate the development or commercialization of MARGENZA or any product candidate licensed to it by us. If one of our collaborators terminates its agreement with us, we may find it more difficult to attract new collaborators. We may also be restricted under commercialization collaboration agreements from entering into future agreements on certain terms with potential collaborators. For example, our collaboration with EVERSANA contains a
restriction on our engaging in activities that are the subject of the collaboration with third parties for specified periods of time among other conditions
Commercialization collaborations are complex and time-consuming to negotiate and document. In addition, there have been a significant number of recent business combinations among large pharmaceutical companies that have resulted in a reduced number of potential future collaborators. If we are unable to reach agreements with suitable collaborators on a timely basis, on acceptable terms, or at all, we may have to curtail the commercialization of MARGENZA or a product candidate, reduce the scope of any sales or marketing activities, or increase our expenditures and undertake or commercialization activities at our own expense. If in the future we elect to fund and undertake commercialization activities on our own, we may need to obtain additional expertise and additional capital, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms or at all. If we fail to enter into collaborations to commercialize our product candidates and do not have sufficient funds or expertise to undertake the necessary commercialization activities, we may not be able to commercialize our product candidates or bring them to market or continue and our business may be materially and adversely affected.
Risks Related to Cybersecurity
A disruption in our computer networks, including those related to cybersecurity, could adversely affect our financial performance as well as our research, development and commercialization efforts.
Security breaches, including physical or electronic break-ins, computer viruses, attacks by hackers and similar breaches can create system disruptions or shutdowns or the unauthorized disclosure of confidential information. In addition, due to the COVID-19 pandemic a significant portion of our employees have been working remotely, either from home or elsewhere. If personal information or protected health information is improperly accessed, tampered with or disclosed as a result of a security breach, we may incur significant costs to notify and mitigate potential harm to the affected individuals, and we may be subject to sanctions and civil or criminal penalties if we are found to be in violation of the privacy or security federal or state laws protecting confidential personal information. In addition, a cybersecurity breach could hurt our reputation, subject us to liability claims or regulatory penalties for compromised personal information and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. In order to reduce such risks, our information security program employs a policy-driven information systems security architecture based on National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework and references the NIST 800-53 guidelines for risk-based assessments and implementation of information security controls. The program is managed by dedicated Information Security personnel with the primary mission to implement, maintain, and improve the capabilities and practices to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the sensitive information it maintains.
Risks Related to Our Intellectual Property
Our commercial success depends significantly on our ability to operate without infringing the valid patents and other proprietary rights of third parties.
Our success will depend in part on our ability to operate without infringing the proprietary rights of third parties. Other entities may have or obtain patents or proprietary rights that could limit our ability to make, use, sell, offer for sale or import our future approved products or impair our competitive position. For example, certain patents held by third parties cover Fc engineering methods and mutations in Fc regions to enhance the binding of Fc regions to Fc receptors on immune cells. Although we believe that these patents are not infringed, and/or are invalid and/or unenforceable, if a court should find that they cover MARGENZA or enoblituzumab and we are unable to invalidate such patents, or if licenses for them are not available on commercially reasonable terms, our business could be harmed, perhaps materially.
Patents that we may ultimately be found to infringe could be issued to third parties. Third parties may have or obtain valid and enforceable patents or proprietary rights that could block us from developing product candidates using our technology. Our failure to obtain a license to any technology that we require may materially harm our business, financial condition and results of operations. Moreover, our failure to maintain a license to any technology that we require may also materially harm our business, financial condition, and results of operations. Furthermore, we would be exposed to a threat of litigation.
In the pharmaceutical industry, significant litigation and other proceedings regarding patents, patent applications, trademarks and other intellectual property rights have become commonplace. The types of situations in which we may become a party to such litigation or proceedings include:
•we or our collaborators may initiate litigation or other proceedings against third parties seeking to invalidate the patents held by those third parties or to obtain a judgment that our products or processes do not infringe those third parties' patents;
•if our competitors file patent applications that claim technology also claimed by us or our licensors, we or our licensors may be required to participate in interference or opposition proceedings to determine the priority of invention, which could jeopardize our patent rights and potentially provide a third party with a dominant patent position;
•if third parties initiate litigation claiming that our processes or products infringe their patent or other intellectual property rights, we and our collaborators will need to defend against such proceedings; and
•if a license to necessary technology is terminated, the licensor may initiate litigation claiming that our processes or products infringe or misappropriate their patent or other intellectual property rights and/or that we breached our obligations under the license agreement, and we and our collaborators would need to defend against such proceedings.
These lawsuits would be costly and could affect our results of operations and divert the attention of our management and scientific personnel. There is a risk that a court would decide that we or our collaborators are infringing the third party’s patents and would order us or our collaborators to stop the activities covered by the patents. In that event, we or our collaborators may not have a viable alternative to the technology protected by the patent and may need to halt work on the affected product candidate or cease commercialization of an approved product. In addition, there is a risk that a court will order us or our collaborators to pay the other party damages. An adverse outcome in any litigation or other proceeding could subject us to significant liabilities to third parties and require us to cease using the technology that is at issue or to license the technology from third parties. We may not be able to obtain any required licenses on commercially acceptable terms or at all. Any of these outcomes could have a material adverse effect on our business.
The pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries have produced a significant number of patents, and it may not always be clear to industry participants, including us, which patents cover various types of products or methods of use. The coverage of patents is subject to interpretation by the courts, and the interpretation is not always uniform or predictable. If we are sued for patent infringement, we would need to demonstrate that our products or methods either do not infringe the patent claims of the relevant patent or that the patent claims are invalid, and we may not be able to do this. Proving invalidity is difficult. For example, in the United States, proving invalidity requires a showing of clear and convincing evidence to overcome the presumption of validity enjoyed by issued patents. Even if we are successful in these proceedings, we may incur substantial costs and divert management’s time and attention in pursuing these proceedings, which could have a material adverse effect on us. If we are unable to avoid infringing the patent rights of others, we may be required to seek a license, defend an infringement action or challenge the validity of the patents in court. Patent litigation is costly and time consuming. We may not have sufficient resources to bring these actions to a successful conclusion. In addition, if we do not obtain a license, develop or obtain non-infringing technology, fail to defend an infringement action successfully or have infringed patents declared invalid, we may incur substantial monetary damages, encounter significant delays in bringing our product candidates to market and be precluded from manufacturing or selling our product candidates.
The cost of any patent litigation or other proceeding, even if resolved in our favor, could be substantial. Some of our competitors may be able to sustain the cost of such litigation and proceedings more effectively than we can because of their substantially greater resources. Uncertainties resulting from the initiation and continuation of patent litigation or other proceedings could have a material adverse effect on our ability to compete in the marketplace. Patent litigation and other proceedings may also absorb significant management time.
If we are unable to obtain and enforce patent protection for our products and our product candidates and related technology, our business could be materially harmed.
Issued patents may be challenged, narrowed, invalidated or circumvented. In addition, court decisions may introduce uncertainty in the enforceability or scope of patents owned by biotechnology companies. The legal systems of certain countries do not favor the aggressive enforcement of patents, and the laws of foreign countries may not allow us to protect our inventions with patents to the same extent as the laws of the United States. Because patent applications in the United States and many foreign jurisdictions are typically not published until 18 months after filing, or in some cases not at all, and because publications of discoveries in scientific literature lag behind actual discoveries, we cannot be certain that we were the first to make the inventions claimed in our issued patents or pending patent applications, or that we were the first to file for protection of the inventions set forth in our patents or patent applications. As a result, we may not be able to obtain or maintain protection for certain inventions. Therefore, the enforceability and scope of our patents in the United States and in foreign countries cannot be predicted with certainty and, as a result, any patents that we own or license may not provide sufficient protection against
competitors. We may not be able to obtain or maintain patent protection from our pending patent applications, from those we may file in the future, or from those we may license from third parties. Moreover, even if we are able to obtain patent protection, such patent protection may be of insufficient scope to achieve our business objectives.
Our strategy depends on our ability to identify and seek patent protection for our discoveries. This process is expensive and time consuming, and we may not be able to file and prosecute all necessary or desirable patent applications at a reasonable cost or in a timely manner or in all jurisdictions where protection may be commercially advantageous. Despite our efforts to protect our proprietary rights, unauthorized parties may be able to obtain and use information that we regard as proprietary.
The issuance of a patent does not ensure that a court or agency finds or will find the patent valid or enforceable, so even if we obtain patents, they may not be valid or enforceable against third parties. In addition, the issuance of a patent does not give us the right to practice the patented invention. Third parties may have blocking patents that could prevent us from marketing our own patented product and practicing our own patented technology. Third parties may also seek to market biosimilar versions of any approved products. Alternatively, third parties may seek approval to market their own products similar to or otherwise competitive with our products. In these circumstances, we may need to defend and/or assert our patents, including by filing lawsuits alleging patent infringement. In any of these types of proceedings, a court or agency with jurisdiction may find our patents invalid and/or unenforceable. Even if we have valid and enforceable patents, these patents still may not provide protection against competing products or processes sufficient to achieve our business objectives.
The patent position of pharmaceutical or biotechnology companies, including ours, is generally uncertain and involves complex legal and factual considerations. The standards which the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and its foreign counterparts use to grant patents are not always applied predictably or uniformly and can change. There is also no uniform, worldwide policy regarding the subject matter and scope of claims granted or allowable in pharmaceutical or biotechnology patents. The laws of some foreign countries do not protect proprietary information to the same extent as the laws of the United States, and many companies have encountered significant problems and costs in protecting their proprietary information in these foreign countries. Outside the United States, patent protection must be sought in individual jurisdictions, further adding to the cost and uncertainty of obtaining adequate patent protection outside of the United States. Accordingly, we cannot predict whether additional patents protecting our technology will issue in the United States or in foreign jurisdictions, or whether any patents that do issue will have claims of adequate scope to provide competitive advantage. Moreover, we cannot predict whether third parties will be able to successfully obtain claims or the breadth of such claims. The allowance of broader claims may increase the incidence and cost of patent interference proceedings, opposition proceedings, and/or reexamination proceedings, the risk of infringement litigation, and the vulnerability of the claims to challenge. On the other hand, the allowance of narrower claims does not eliminate the potential for adversarial proceedings, and may fail to provide a competitive advantage. Our issued patents may not contain claims sufficiently broad to protect us against third parties with similar technologies or products, or provide us with any competitive advantage.
We may become involved in lawsuits to protect or enforce our patents, which could be expensive, time consuming and unsuccessful.
Even after they have been issued, our patents and any patents which we license may be challenged, narrowed, invalidated or circumvented. If our patents are invalidated or otherwise limited or will expire prior to the commercialization of our approved products and product candidates, other companies may be better able to develop products that compete with ours, which could adversely affect our competitive business position, business prospects and financial condition.
The following are examples of litigation and other adversarial proceedings or disputes that we could become a party to involving our patents or patents licensed to us:
•we or our collaborators may initiate litigation or other proceedings against third parties to enforce our patent rights;
•third parties may initiate litigation or other proceedings seeking to invalidate patents owned by or licensed to us or to obtain a declaratory judgment that their product or technology does not infringe our patents or patents licensed to us;
•third parties may initiate opposition, reexamination or inter partes review proceedings challenging the validity or scope of our patent rights, requiring us or our collaborators and/or licensors to participate in such proceedings to defend the validity and scope of our patents;
•there may be a challenge or dispute regarding inventorship or ownership of patents currently identified as being owned by or licensed to us;
•the USPTO may initiate an interference between patents or patent applications owned by or licensed to us and those of our competitors, requiring us or our collaborators and/or licensors to participate in an interference proceeding to determine the priority of invention, which could jeopardize our patent rights; or
•third parties may seek approval to market biosimilar versions of our future approved products prior to expiration of relevant patents owned by or licensed to us, requiring us to defend our patents, including by filing lawsuits alleging patent infringement.
These lawsuits and proceedings would be costly and could affect our results of operations and divert the attention of our managerial and scientific personnel. There is a risk that a court or administrative body would decide that our patents are invalid or not infringed by a third party’s activities, or that the scope of certain issued claims must be further limited. An adverse outcome in a litigation or proceeding involving our own patents could limit our ability to assert our patents against these or other competitors, affect our ability to receive royalties or other licensing consideration from our licensees, and may curtail or preclude our ability to exclude third parties from making, using and selling similar or competitive products. Any of these occurrences could adversely affect our competitive business position, business prospects and financial condition.
The degree of future protection for our proprietary rights is uncertain because legal means afford only limited protection and may not adequately protect our rights or permit us to gain or keep our competitive advantage. For example:
•others may be able to develop a platform that is similar to, or better than, ours in a way that is not covered by the claims of our patents;
•others may be able to make compounds that are similar to our product candidates but that are not covered by the claims of our patents;
•we might not have been the first to make the inventions covered by patents or pending patent applications;
•we might not have been the first to file patent applications for these inventions;
•any patents that we obtain may not provide us with any competitive advantages or may ultimately be found invalid or unenforceable; or
•we may not develop additional proprietary technologies that are patentable.
If we fail to comply with our obligations under our intellectual property licenses with third parties, we could lose license rights that are important to our business.
We are currently party to various intellectual property license agreements. These license agreements impose, and we expect that future license agreements may impose, various diligence, milestone payment, royalty, insurance and other obligations on us. For example, we have entered into patent and know-how license agreements that grant us the right to use certain technologies related to biological manufacturing to manufacture our clinical product candidates. These licenses typically include an obligation to pay yearly maintenance payments and royalties on sales, and may also include upfront and milestone payments. If we fail to comply with our obligations under the licenses, the licensors may have the right to terminate their respective license agreements, in which event we might not be able to market any product that is covered by the agreements. Termination of the license agreements or reduction or elimination of our licensed rights may result in our having to negotiate new or reinstated licenses with less favorable terms, which could adversely affect our competitive business position and harm our business.
If we are unable to protect the confidentiality of our proprietary information, the value of our technology and products could be adversely affected.
In addition to patent protection, we also rely on other proprietary rights, including protection of trade secrets, and other proprietary information. To maintain the confidentiality of trade secrets and proprietary information, we enter into confidentiality agreements with our employees, consultants, collaborators and others upon the commencement of their relationships with us. These agreements require that all confidential information developed by the individual or made known to the individual by us during the course of the individual’s relationship with us be kept confidential and not disclosed to third parties. Our agreements with employees and our personnel policies also provide that any inventions conceived by the individual in the course of rendering services to us shall be our exclusive property. However, we may not obtain these agreements in all circumstances, and individuals with whom we have these agreements may not comply with their terms. Thus, despite such
agreement, such inventions may become assigned to third parties. In the event of unauthorized use or disclosure of our trade secrets or proprietary information, these agreements, even if obtained, may not provide meaningful protection, particularly for our trade secrets or other confidential information. To the extent that our employees, consultants or contractors use technology or know-how owned by third parties in their work for us, disputes may arise between us and those third parties as to the rights in related inventions. To the extent that an individual who is not obligated to assign rights in intellectual property to us is rightfully an inventor of intellectual property, we may need to obtain an assignment or a license to that intellectual property from that individual, or a third party or from that individual’s assignee. Such assignment or license may not be available on commercially reasonable terms or at all.
Adequate remedies may not exist in the event of unauthorized use or disclosure of our proprietary information. The disclosure of our trade secrets would impair our competitive position and may materially harm our business, financial condition and results of operations. Costly and time consuming litigation could be necessary to enforce and determine the scope of our proprietary rights, and failure to maintain trade secret protection could adversely affect our competitive business position. In addition, others may independently discover or develop our trade secrets and proprietary information, and the existence of our own trade secrets affords no protection against such independent discovery.
As is common in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, we employ individuals who were previously or concurrently employed at research institutions and/or other biotechnology or pharmaceutical companies, including our competitors or potential competitors. We may be subject to claims that these employees, or we, have inadvertently or otherwise used or disclosed trade secrets or other proprietary information of their former employers, or that patents and applications we have filed to protect inventions of these employees, even those related to one or more of our product candidates, are rightfully owned by their former or concurrent employer. Litigation may be necessary to defend against these claims. Even if we are successful in defending against these claims, litigation could result in substantial costs and be a distraction to management.
Obtaining and maintaining our patent protection depends on compliance with various procedural, documentary, fee payment and other requirements imposed by governmental patent agencies, and our patent protection could be reduced or eliminated for non-compliance with these requirements.
Periodic maintenance fees, renewal fees, annuity fees and various other governmental fees on patents and/or applications will be due to the USPTO and various foreign patent offices at various points over the lifetime of our patents and/or applications. We have systems in place to remind us to pay these fees, and we rely on our outside counsel or our agents to pay these fees when due. Additionally, the USPTO and various foreign patent offices require compliance with a number of procedural, documentary, fee payment and other similar provisions during the patent application process. We employ reputable law firms and other professionals to help us comply, and in many cases, an inadvertent lapse can be cured by payment of a late fee or by other means in accordance with rules applicable to the particular jurisdiction. However, there are situations in which noncompliance can result in abandonment or lapse of the patent or patent application, resulting in partial or complete loss of patent rights in the relevant jurisdiction. If such an event were to occur, it could have a material adverse effect on our business. In addition, we may be responsible for the payment of patent fees for patent rights that we license from other parties. If any licensor of these patents does not itself elect to make these payments, and we fail to do so, we may be liable to the licensor for any costs and consequences of any resulting loss of patent rights.
If we do not obtain protection under the Hatch-Waxman Amendments and similar foreign legislation for extending the term of patents covering each of our product candidates, our business may be materially harmed.
Depending upon the timing, duration and conditions of FDA marketing approval of our product candidates, one or more of our U.S. patents may be eligible for limited patent term extension under the Drug Price Competition and Patent Term Restoration Act of 1984, referred to as the Hatch-Waxman Amendments. The Hatch-Waxman Amendments permit a patent term extension of up to five years for a patent covering an approved product as compensation for effective patent term lost during product development and the FDA regulatory review process. However, we may not receive an extension if we fail to apply within applicable deadlines, fail to apply prior to expiration of relevant patents or otherwise fail to satisfy applicable requirements. Moreover, the length of the extension could be less than we request. If we are unable to obtain patent term extension or the term of any such extension is less than we request, the period during which we can enforce our patent rights for that product will be shortened and our competitors may obtain approval to market competing products sooner. As a result, our revenue from applicable products could be reduced, possibly materially,
Risks Related to Legal Compliance Matters
If we do not comply with laws regulating the protection of the environment and health and human safety, our business could be adversely affected.
Our research and development involves, and may in the future involve, the use of potentially hazardous materials and chemicals. Our operations may produce hazardous waste products. Although we believe that our safety procedures for handling and disposing of these materials comply with the standards mandated by local, state and federal laws and regulations, the risk of accidental contamination or injury from these materials cannot be eliminated. If an accident occurs, we could be held liable for resulting damages, which could be substantial. We are also subject to numerous environmental, health and workplace safety laws and regulations and fire and building codes, including those governing laboratory procedures, exposure to blood-borne pathogens, use and storage of flammable agents and the handling of biohazardous materials. Although we maintain workers’ compensation insurance as prescribed by the States of Maryland and California to cover us for costs and expenses we may incur due to injuries to our employees resulting from the use of these materials, this insurance may not provide adequate coverage against potential liabilities. We do not maintain insurance for environmental liability or toxic tort claims that may be asserted against us. Additional federal, state and local laws and regulations affecting our operations may be adopted in the future. We may incur substantial costs to comply with, and substantial fines or penalties if we violate, any of these laws or regulations.
We and our collaborators are subject to various healthcare laws, and our failure, or the failure of our collaborators, to comply with those laws could result in significant penalties and adversely affect our business, operations and financial condition.
In the United States, our operations, and those of our collaborators, are subject to regulation by various local, state, federal authorities in addition to the FDA, including but not limited to, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”), other divisions of HHS (such as the Office of Inspector General, Office for Civil Rights and the Health Resources and Service Administration), the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and individual U.S. Attorney offices within the DOJ, and state and local governments. We and our collaborators are or may be subject to broadly applicable “fraud and abuse” laws , such as false claims, anti-kickback laws, transparency laws, and privacy and security laws.. Federal false claims laws, including the federal civil False Claims Act, prohibit, among other things, any person or entity from knowingly presenting, or causing to be presented, a false claim for payment to the federal government or knowingly making, or causing to be made, a false statement to get a claim paid.
The federal healthcare program anti-kickback statute prohibits, among other things, knowingly and willfully offering, paying, soliciting or receiving remuneration to induce, or in return for, purchasing, leasing, ordering or arranging for the purchase, lease or order of any healthcare item or service reimbursable under Medicare, Medicaid or other federally financed healthcare programs. This statute has been interpreted to apply to arrangements between pharmaceutical manufacturers on the one hand and prescribers, purchasers and formulary managers on the other. Although there are several statutory exemptions and regulatory safe harbors protecting certain common activities from prosecution, the exemptions and safe harbors are drawn narrowly, and practices that involve remuneration intended to induce prescribing, purchasing or recommending may be subject to scrutiny if they do not qualify for an exemption or safe harbor. Failure to meet all of the requirements of a particular applicable statutory exception or regulatory safe harbor does not make the conduct per se illegal under the federal anti-kickback statute. Instead, the legality of the arrangement will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis based on a cumulative review of all of its facts and circumstances. Our practices, or those of our collaborators, may not in all cases meet all of the criteria for protection under a statutory exception or regulatory safe harbor.
Additionally, the intent standard under the federal anti-kickback statute and the criminal healthcare fraud statutes (discussed below) was amended by the ACA to a stricter standard such that a person or entity no longer needs to have actual knowledge of the statute or specific intent to violate it in order to have committed a violation. In addition, the ACA codified case law that a claim including items or services resulting from a violation of the federal anti-kickback statute constitutes a false or fraudulent claim for purposes of the federal civil false claims act.
The federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, or HIPAA, which prohibits, among other things, knowingly and willfully executing, or attempting to execute, a scheme or artifice to defraud any healthcare benefit program or obtain, by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises, any of the money or property owned by, or under the custody or control of, any healthcare benefit program, regardless of the payor (e.g., public or private), willfully obstructing a criminal investigation of a healthcare offense, and knowingly and willfully falsifying, concealing or covering up by any trick or device a material fact or making any materially false, fictitious or fraudulent statements in connection with the delivery of, or payment for, healthcare benefits, items or services relating to healthcare matters. Similar to the federal anti-kickback statute, a person or entity does not need to have actual knowledge of the statute or specific intent to violate it in order to have committed a violation.
In addition, under the Sunshine Act provisions of the ACA, covered manufacturers of drugs, devices, biological and medical supplies for which payment is available under a federal health care program (with certain exceptions) are subject to
annual federal reporting and disclosure requirements with regard to payments or other transfers of value made to physicians defined to include doctors, dentists, optometrists, podiatrists and chiropractors) and teaching hospitals as well as certain ownership and investment interests held by physicians and their immediate family members. Beginning in 2022, applicable manufacturers also will be required to report such information regarding its relationships with physician assistants, nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, anesthesiologist assistants, certified registered nurse anesthetists and certified nurse midwives during the previous year.
Most states also have statutes or regulations similar to the federal anti-kickback law and federal false claims laws, which may apply to items such as pharmaceutical products and services reimbursed by private insurers. Some state laws also prohibit certain gifts to healthcare providers, require pharmaceutical companies to report payments to healthcare professionals, and/or require companies to adopt compliance programs or codes of conduct.
Over the past few years, a number of pharmaceutical and other healthcare companies have been prosecuted under these laws for a variety of promotional and marketing activities, such as: providing free trips, free goods, improper consulting fees and grants and other monetary benefits to prescribers; reporting to pricing services inflated average wholesale prices that were then used by federal programs to set reimbursement rates; engaging in off-label promotion; and submitting inflated best price information to the Medicaid Rebate Program to reduce liability for Medicaid rebates. At such time as we or our collaborators market MARGENZA or any of our future approved products and these products are paid for by governmental programs, it is possible that some of our business activities could also be subject to challenge under one or more of these “fraud and abuse” laws.
We and our collaborators may also be subject to data privacy and security regulations by both the federal government and the states in which we conduct our business, as well as foreign jurisdictions. In the United States, HIPAA, as amended by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, or HITECH, and its implementing regulations, impose requirements on “covered entities,” including certain healthcare providers, health plans, and healthcare clearinghouses, and their respective “business associates” that create, receive, maintain or transmit individually identifiable health information for or on behalf of a covered entity as well as their covered subcontractors relating to the privacy, security and transmission of individually identifiable health information.
Further, in order to distribute products commercially in the United States, we or our collaborators must also comply with state laws that require the registration of manufacturers and wholesale distributors of pharmaceutical products in a state, including, in certain states, manufacturers, and distributors who ship products into the state even if such manufacturers or distributors have no place of business within the state. Some states also impose requirements on manufacturers and distributors to establish the pedigree of product in the chain of distribution, including some states that require manufacturers and others to adopt new technology capable of tracking and tracing product as it moves through the distribution chain. Several states have enacted legislation requiring pharmaceutical companies to establish marketing compliance programs, file periodic reports with the state, make periodic public disclosures on sales, marketing, pricing, track, and report gifts, compensation and other remuneration made to physicians and other healthcare providers, clinical trials and other activities, and/or register their sales representatives, as well as to prohibit pharmacies and other healthcare entities from providing certain physician prescribing data to pharmaceutical companies for use in sales and marketing, and to prohibit certain other sales and marketing practices.
If our operations, or those of our collaborators marketing, distributing or commercializing any of our products on our behalf, are found to be in violation of any of the federal and state healthcare laws described above or any other governmental regulations that apply to us, we may be subject to penalties, including without limitation, civil, criminal and/or administrative penalties, damages, fines, disgorgement, exclusion from participation in government programs, such as Medicare and Medicaid, injunctions, private “qui tam” actions brought by individual whistleblowers in the name of the government, or refusal to allow us to enter into government contracts, contractual damages, reputational harm, administrative burdens, diminished profits and future earnings, and the curtailment or restructuring of our operations, any of which could adversely affect our ability to operate our business and our results of operations.
In addition, our operations and those of our collaborators may be subject to analogous foreign health care laws in the jurisdictions in which we operate.
We are subject to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other anti-corruption laws. If we fail to comply with these laws, we could be subject to civil or criminal penalties, other remedial measures, and legal expenses, which could adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition.
Our operations are subject to anti-corruption laws, including the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, (FCPA) and other anti-corruption laws that apply in countries where we do business. The FCPA and these other laws generally prohibit us and our
employees and intermediaries from bribing, being bribed or making other prohibited payments to government officials or other persons to obtain or retain business or gain some other business advantage. We and our commercial partners operate in a number of jurisdictions that pose a risk of potential FCPA violations, and we participate in collaborations and relationships with third parties whose actions could potentially subject us to liability under the FCPA or other anti-corruption laws. There is no assurance that we will be completely effective in ensuring our compliance with all applicable anti-corruption laws. If we violate provisions of the FCPA or other anti-corruption laws or are subject to an investigation or audit pursuant to these laws, we may be subject to criminal and civil penalties, disgorgement and other sanctions and remedial measures and legal expenses, which could have an adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Our employees may engage in misconduct or other improper activities, including noncompliance with regulatory standards and requirements and insider trading.
We are exposed to the risk of employee fraud or other misconduct. Misconduct by employees could include intentional failures to comply with FDA regulations, to provide accurate information to the FDA or other agencies, to comply with federal and state health care fraud and abuse laws and regulations, to report financial information or data accurately or to disclose unauthorized activities to us. In particular, sales, marketing and business arrangements in the health care industry are subject to extensive laws and regulations intended to prevent fraud, misconduct, kickbacks, self-dealing and other abusive practices. Employee misconduct could also involve the improper use of information obtained in the course of clinical trials, which could result in regulatory sanctions and serious harm to our reputation. We have adopted a code of conduct, but it is not always possible to identify and deter employee misconduct, and the precautions we take to detect and prevent this activity may not be effective in controlling unknown or unmanaged risks or losses or in protecting us from governmental investigations or other actions or lawsuits stemming from a failure to comply with these laws or regulations. If any such actions are instituted against us, and we are not successful in defending ourselves or asserting our rights, those actions could have a significant impact on our business, including the imposition of significant fines or other sanctions.
Risks Relating to Employee Matters and Managing Growth
Our future success depends on our ability to retain key executives and to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel.
We are highly dependent on the research and development, clinical and business development expertise of Scott Koenig, M.D., Ph.D., our President and Chief Executive Officer, as well as the other members of our senior management team. Although we have entered into employment agreements with our executive officers, each of them may terminate their employment with us at any time. The loss of the services of our executive officers or other key employees could impede the achievement of our research, development, manufacturing and commercialization objectives and seriously harm our ability to successfully implement our business strategy.
Recruiting and retaining qualified scientific, clinical, manufacturing and sales and marketing personnel will also be critical to our success. In addition, we will need to expand and effectively manage our managerial, operational, financial, development and other resources in order to successfully pursue our commercialization of MARGENZA and research, development and commercialization efforts for our existing and future product candidates. Furthermore, replacing executive officers and key employees may be difficult and may take an extended period of time because of the limited number of individuals in our industry with the breadth of skills and experience required to successfully develop, gain regulatory approval of and commercialize products. Competition to hire from this limited pool is intense, and we may be unable to hire, train, retain or motivate these key personnel on acceptable terms given the competition among numerous pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies for similar personnel. We also experience competition for the hiring of scientific and clinical personnel from universities and research institutions. In addition, we rely on consultants and advisors, including scientific and clinical advisors, to assist us in formulating our research and development and commercialization strategy. Our consultants and advisors may be employed by employers other than us and may have commitments under consulting or advisory contracts with other entities that may limit their availability to us. If we are unable to continue to attract and retain high quality personnel, our ability to pursue our growth strategy will be limited.
If we are unable to provide meaningful equity incentives to our key employees, it could adversely affect our ability to retain these key employees, which in turn could affect our ability to implement our business strategies.
We are dependent upon the members of our senior management team and other key employees. In our industry, it is common to attract and retain executive and other key employees with compensation packages that include a significant equity component. As a result, we may have difficulty retaining key personnel, which would have a material adverse effect on our ability to execute our business strategy.
We may need to grow our organization, and we may experience difficulties in managing this growth, which could disrupt our operations.
As of December 31, 2020, we had 370 full-time employees. As our development and commercialization plans and strategies develop, we may choose to expand our employee base for managerial, operational, manufacturing, sales, marketing, financial and other resources. Future growth would impose significant added responsibilities on members of management, including the need to identify, recruit, maintain, motivate and integrate additional employees. Also, our management may need to divert a disproportionate amount of their attention away from our day-to-day activities and devote a substantial amount of time to managing these growth activities. We may not be able to effectively manage the expansion of our operations which may result in weaknesses in our infrastructure, give rise to operational errors, loss of business opportunities, loss of employees and reduced productivity among remaining employees. Any such growth could require significant capital expenditures and may divert financial resources from other projects, such as the commercialization of MARGENZA and the development of existing and additional product candidates. If our management is unable to effectively manage such growth, our expenses may increase more than expected, our ability to generate and/or grow revenue could be reduced and we may not be able to implement our business strategy. Our future financial performance and our ability to commercialize MARGENZA, our product candidates and compete effectively with others in our industry will depend, in part, on our ability to effectively manage any such growth.
Risks Relating to Our Common Stock
We are subject to securities litigation, which is expensive and could divert management attention and adversely impact our business.
The market price of our common stock has been and may continue to be volatile. Companies that have experienced volatility in the market price of their common stock are often subject to securities class action litigation. For example, on September 13, 2019, a securities class action complaint was filed against us, and certain of our officers and/or directors in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, which case is still pending. This or any future securities litigation could result in substantial costs and diversion of management’s attention and resources, which could adversely impact our business. Any adverse determination in litigation could also subject us to significant liabilities.
The market price of our stock may fluctuate unpredictably in response to factors unrelated to our operating performance. The stock market has recently experienced significant volatility, particularly with respect to pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and other life sciences company stocks. The volatility of pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and other life sciences company stocks often does not relate to the operating performance of the companies represented by the stock. Some of the factors that may cause the market price of our common stock to fluctuate include:
•results and timing of our clinical trials and clinical trials of our competitors’ products;
•failure or discontinuation of any of our development programs;
•issues in manufacturing our product candidates or future approved products;
•regulatory developments or enforcement in the United States and foreign countries with respect to our product candidates or our competitors’ products;
•competition from existing products or new products that may emerge;
•developments or disputes concerning patents or other proprietary rights;
•introduction of technological innovations or new commercial products by us or our competitors;
•announcements by us, our collaborators or our competitors of significant acquisitions, strategic partnerships, joint ventures, collaborations or capital commitments;
•changes in estimates or recommendations by securities analysts, if any cover our common stock;
•fluctuations in the valuation of companies perceived by investors to be comparable to us;
•public concern over our product candidates or any future approved products;
•threatened or actual litigation;
•future or anticipated sales of our common stock;
•share price and volume fluctuations attributable to inconsistent trading volume levels of our shares;
•additions or departures of key personnel;
•changes in the structure of health care payment systems in the United States or overseas;
•failure of any of MARGENZA or our product candidates, if approved, to achieve commercial success;
•economic and other external factors or other disasters or crises;
•period-to-period fluctuations in our financial condition and results of operations, including the timing of receipt of any milestone or other payments under commercialization or licensing agreements;
•general market conditions and market conditions for biopharmaceutical stocks;
•overall fluctuations in U.S. equity markets; and
•impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as mandatory and voluntary actions taken to mitigate the evolving public health impact of the pandemic.
In addition, in the past, when the market price of a stock has been volatile, holders of that stock have sometimes instituted securities class action litigation against the company that issued the stock. For example, we currently have one such securities class action lawsuit brought against us. We could incur substantial costs defending this or similar lawsuits, as well as diversion of the time and attention of our management, any or all of which could seriously harm our business
Provisions of our charter, bylaws, third-party agreements and Delaware law may make an acquisition of us or a change in our management more difficult.
Certain provisions of our restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws could discourage, delay, or prevent a merger, acquisition, or other change in control that stockholders may consider favorable, including transactions in which you might otherwise receive a premium for your shares. These provisions also could limit the price that investors might be willing to pay in the future for shares of our common stock, thereby depressing the market price of our common stock. Stockholders who wish to participate in these transactions may not have the opportunity to do so. Furthermore, since our board of directors is responsible for appointing the members of our management team, these provisions could prevent or frustrate attempts by our stockholders to replace or remove our management by making it more difficult for stockholders to replace members of our board of directors. These provisions:
•allow the authorized number of directors to be changed only by resolution of our board of directors;
•establish a classified board of directors, providing that not all members of the board of directors be elected at one time;
•authorize our board of directors to issue without stockholder approval blank check preferred stock that, if issued, could operate as a "poison pill" to dilute the stock ownership of a potential hostile acquirer to prevent an acquisition that is not approved by our board of directors;
•require that stockholder actions must be effected at a duly called stockholder meeting and prohibit stockholder action by written consent;
•establish advance notice requirements for stockholder nominations to our board of directors or for stockholder proposals that can be acted on at stockholder meetings;
•limit who may call stockholder meetings; and
•require the approval of the holders of 75% of the outstanding shares of our capital stock entitled to vote in order to amend certain provisions of our restated certificate of incorporation and restated bylaws.
Furthermore, in the ordinary course of our business, from time to time we discuss and enter into collaborations, licenses and other transactions with various third parties, including other pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies. When we deem it appropriate, our agreements with such third parties may include standstill provisions. These standstill provisions, several of which may be in force from time-to-time, typically prohibit such parties from acquiring our securities for a period of time, which may discourage such parties from acquiring MacroGenics even if doing so would be beneficial to our stockholders.
In addition, because we are incorporated in Delaware, we are governed by the provisions of Section 203 of the Delaware General Corporation Law, which may, unless certain criteria are met, prohibit large stockholders, in particular those owning 15% or more of our outstanding voting stock, from merging or combining with us for a prescribed period of time. This provision could have the effect of delaying or preventing a change of control, whether or not it is desired by or beneficial to our stockholders.
ITEM 1B. UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS
ITEM 2. PROPERTIES
We lease a total of approximately 235,000 square feet of manufacturing, office, laboratory and warehouse space in Maryland and California. Our headquarters building in Rockville, Maryland currently houses laboratory, office and manufacturing operations to support clinical, and potentially commercial, quantities and scale. This location is occupied under a lease that expires in 2027. We also lease another space supporting smaller-scale manufacturing operations in Rockville. The lease of that space expires in December 2024. These leases and all of the leases on our other properties include one or more options to renew, with those renewal periods ranging from five to fourteen years. We believe that our properties are generally in good condition, well maintained, suitable and adequate to carry on our business. We believe our capital resources are sufficient to lease any additional facilities required to meet our expected growth needs.
ITEM 3. LEGAL PROCEEDINGS
In the ordinary course of business, we are or may be involved in various legal or regulatory proceedings, claims or class actions related to alleged patent infringements and other intellectual property rights, or alleged violation of commercial, corporate, securities, labor and employment, and other matters incidental to our business. We do not, however, expect such legal proceedings to have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations. However, depending on the nature and timing of a given dispute, an eventual unfavorable resolution could materially affect our current or future results of operations or cash flows.
See note 10, Commitments and Contingencies, to the consolidated financial statements for more information.
ITEM 4. MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURES
ITEM 5. MARKET FOR REGISTRANT'S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES
Our common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol "MGNX". As of February 22, 2021, we had 56,258,468 shares of common stock outstanding held by approximately 63 holders of record, which include shares held by a broker, bank or other nominee. We have never declared or paid any cash dividends. We do not anticipate declaring or paying cash dividends for the foreseeable future. Instead, we will retain our earnings, if any, for the future operation and expansion of our business.
The following graph compares the five-year cumulative total return of our common stock with the Nasdaq Composite Index (U.S.) and the Nasdaq Biotechnology Index. The comparison assumes a $100 investment on December 31, 2015 in our common stock, the stocks comprising the Nasdaq Composite Index, and the stocks comprising the Nasdaq Biotechnology Index, and assumes reinvestment of the full amount of all dividends, if any. Historical stockholder return is not necessarily indicative of the performance to be expected for any future periods.
The information set forth under the heading "Performance Graph" shall not be deemed to be "soliciting material" or to be "filed" with the SEC or subject to liabilities of Section 18 of the Exchange Act, except to the extent that we specifically request that such information be treated as soliciting material or specifically be incorporated by reference into a filing under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Exchange Act.
ITEM 6. SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA
ITEM 7. MANAGEMENT'S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
The following discussion of our financial condition and results of operations should be read together with our selected consolidated financial data and the consolidated financial statements and related notes included elsewhere herein. This discussion contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. As a result of many factors including, but not limited to, those set forth under the sections entitled "Risk Factors" and "Forward-Looking Statements", our actual results may differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements.
For the discussion of our financial condition and results of operations for the year ended December 31, 2019 compared to the year ended December 31, 2018, please refer to Part II, Item 7, "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2019 filed with the SEC on February 25, 2020.
We are a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative antibody-based therapeutics designed to modulate the human immune response for the treatment of cancer. In December 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved MARGENZA (margetuximab-cmkb), a human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) receptor antagonist indicated, in combination with chemotherapy, for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer who have received two or more prior anti-HER2 regimens, at least one of which was for metastatic disease. We expect to initiate the commercial launch of MARGENZA late in the first quarter of 2021. In addition, we have a pipeline of product candidates in human clinical testing, including eight immuno-oncology programs, that have been created primarily using our proprietary, antibody-based technology platforms. We believe our product candidates have the potential to have a meaningful effect on treating patients' unmet medical needs as monotherapy or, in some cases, in combination with other therapeutic agents.
We commenced active operations in 2000, and have since devoted substantially all of our resources to staffing our company, developing our technology platforms, identifying potential product candidates, undertaking preclinical studies, conducting clinical trials, developing collaborations, business planning and raising capital. We have not generated any revenues from the sale of any products to date. We have financed our operations primarily through the public and private offerings of our securities, collaborations with other biopharmaceutical companies, and government grants and contracts. Although it is difficult to predict our funding requirements, we anticipate that our cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities as of December 31, 2020, combined with anticipated and potential collaboration payments and product revenues, should enable us to fund our operations into 2023, assuming our programs and collaborations advance as currently contemplated.
Through December 31, 2020, we had an accumulated deficit of $771.8 million. We expect that over the next several years this deficit will increase as we increase our expenditures in research and development in connection with our ongoing activities with several clinical trials.
In March 2020, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak of a novel strain of coronavirus (COVID-19) as a pandemic, which continues to spread throughout the world. Developments have been occurring rapidly with respect to the spread of COVID-19 and its impact on human health and businesses. To date, the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted the global economy, created significant financial market volatility, disrupted global supply chains, and resulted in a significant number of infections and deaths worldwide. In addition, several national, state and local governments have placed restrictions on people from gathering in groups or interacting within a certain physical distance and in certain cases, have ordered businesses to close, limit operations or mandate that people stay at home.
To date, although there has been some negative impact on our business and operations, including, for example, slowed clinical trial enrollment, we have been able to mitigate against more severe impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on our business and operations. However, the COVID-19 pandemic could have a more significant negative impact on our business in the future depending on the depth of the effects and the duration of the crisis. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been focused on keeping our employees safe, continuing patients on trials, and maintaining our manufacturing capabilities and research efforts. The COVID-19 pandemic is an evolving situation and we continue to monitor our business very closely to try and mitigate any potential impacts. We expect the pandemic to continue to have some near-term impact on the initiation of new studies and on clinical trial enrollment. For example, in consideration of the current COVID-19 pandemic, we delayed our planned Phase 2 study of enoblituzumab, an investigational, Fc-engineered, anti-B7-H3 monoclonal antibody, in combination with checkpoint blockade in patients with advanced head and neck cancer until the first quarter of 2021. In addition, we stopped
enrollment in a Phase 1/2 study combining flotetuzumab with retifanlimab in patients with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia being conducted outside of the U.S. Significant delays in the timing of our clinical trials and in regulatory reviews could adversely affect our ability to commercialize the product candidates in our pipeline.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, we cannot precisely predict the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic will have in the future due to numerous uncertainties, including the severity of the disease, the duration of the outbreak, actions that may be taken by governmental authorities, the impact to the business of potential variations or disruptions in our supply chain, and other factors identified in Part I, Item 1A. “Risk Factors” in this Form 10-K. Given these uncertainties, the COVID-19 pandemic could disrupt the business of certain of our collaborators and impact our business operations and our ability to execute on our associated business strategies and initiatives, and adversely impact our consolidated results of operations and/or our financial condition in the future. We will continue to closely monitor and evaluate the nature and extent of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to our business, consolidated results of operations, and financial condition.
We pursue a balanced approach between product candidates that we develop ourselves and those that we develop with our collaborators. Under our strategic collaborations to date, we have received significant non-dilutive funding and continue to have rights to additional funding upon completion of certain research, achievement of key product development milestones and royalties and other payments upon the commercial sale of products. Our current collaborations include the following:
•Incyte. In 2017, we entered into an exclusive global collaboration and license agreement with Incyte Corporation (Incyte) for retifanlimab (also known as INCMGA0012), an investigational monoclonal antibody that inhibits programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) (Incyte License Agreement). Incyte has obtained exclusive worldwide rights for the development and commercialization of retifanlimab in all indications, while we retain the right to develop our pipeline assets in combination with retifanlimab. Incyte paid us an upfront payment of $150.0 million under the terms of the agreement.
Under the terms of the Incyte License Agreement, Incyte leads global development of retifanlimab. Assuming successful development and commercialization of retifanlimab by Incyte, we could receive total development and regulatory milestones of up to approximately $420.0 million and up to $330.0 million in commercial milestones. We received $55.0 million of the total development milestones through December 31, 2020 and an additional development milestone of $10.0 million was earned in February 2021. If retifanlimab is approved and commercialized, we would be eligible to receive tiered royalties of 15% to 24% on any global net sales and we have the option to co-promote retifanlimab with Incyte. We retain the right to develop our pipeline assets in combination with retifanlimab, with Incyte commercializing retifanlimab and us commercializing our asset(s), if any such potential combinations are approved. We also have an agreement with Incyte under which we are to perform development and manufacturing services for Incyte's clinical needs of retifanlimab (Incyte Clinical Supply Agreement) and another agreement under which we are entitled to manufacture a portion of Incyte’s global commercial supply of retifanlimab (Incyte Commercial Supply Agreement).
•Zai Lab. In 2018, we entered into a collaboration and license agreement with Zai Lab Limited (Zai Lab) under which Zai Lab obtained regional development and commercialization rights in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan (Zai Lab’s territory) for (i) margetuximab, an immune-optimized anti-HER2 monoclonal antibody, (ii) tebotelimab (formerly known as MGD013), a bispecific DART molecule designed to provide coordinate blockade of PD-1 and LAG-3 for the potential treatment of a range of solid tumors and hematological malignancies, and (iii) an undisclosed multi-specific TRIDENT molecule in preclinical development. Zai Lab will lead clinical development in its territory.
Under the terms of the agreement, Zai Lab paid us an upfront payment of $25.0 million less foreign withholding tax of $2.5 million. Assuming successful development and commercialization of margetuximab, tebotelimab and the TRIDENT molecule, we could receive up to $140.0 million in development and regulatory milestones, of which we have already received $4.0 million ($3.6 million net of foreign withholding tax). In addition, Zai Lab would pay us tiered royalties at percentage rates of mid-teens to 20% for net sales of margetuximab in Zai Lab’s territory, mid-teens for net sales of tebotelimab in Zai Lab’s territory and 10% for net sales of the TRIDENT molecule in Zai Lab’s territory, which may be subject to adjustment in specified circumstances.
•I-Mab Biopharma. In July 2019, we entered into a collaboration and license agreement with I-Mab Biopharma (I-Mab) to develop and commercialize enoblituzumab, an immune-optimized, anti-B7-H3 monoclonal antibody that incorporates our proprietary Fc Optimization technology platform. I-Mab obtained regional development and
commercialization rights in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan (I-Mab's territory), will lead clinical development of enoblituzumab in its territories, and will participate in global studies conducted by us.
Under the terms of the agreement, I-Mab paid us an upfront payment of $15.0 million. Assuming successful development and commercialization of enoblituzumab, we could receive up to $135.0 million in development and regulatory milestones. In addition, I-Mab would pay us tiered royalties ranging from mid teens to 20% on annual net sales in its territories.
•Janssen. In December 2020, we entered into a research collaboration and global license agreement to develop a preclinical bispecific molecule with Janssen Biotech, Inc. (Janssen). The research collaboration will incorporate our proprietary DART platform to enable simultaneous targeting of two undisclosed targets in a therapeutic area outside oncology. Under the terms of the agreement, Janssen paid us an upfront payment of $20.0 million and will be responsible for funding all expenses. We will also be eligible to receive up to $312.0 million in potential milestone payments and tiered royalties of up to 10% on worldwide product sales.
Financial Operations Overview
Our revenue consists primarily of collaboration revenue, including amounts recognized relating to upfront nonrefundable payments for licenses or options to obtain future licenses, amounts earned by performing development and manufacturing services, research and development funding and milestone payments earned under our collaboration and license agreements with our strategic collaborators. In addition, we have earned revenues through several grants and/or contracts with the U.S. government and other research institutions on behalf of the U.S. government, primarily with respect to research and development activities related to infectious disease product candidates.
Research and Development Expense
Research and development expense consists of expenses incurred in performing research and development activities. These expenses include conducting preclinical experiments and studies, clinical trials, manufacturing efforts and regulatory filings for all product candidates, and other indirect expenses in support of our research and development activities. We capture research and development expense on a program-by-program basis for our product candidates and recognize these expenses as they are incurred. The following are items we include in research and development expense:
•employee-related expenses, such as salaries and benefits;
•employee-related overhead expenses, such as facilities and other allocated items;
•stock-based compensation expense to employees engaged in research and development activities;
•depreciation of laboratory and manufacturing equipment, computers and leasehold improvements;
•fees paid to consultants, subcontractors, clinical research organizations (CROs) and other third party vendors for work performed under our preclinical and clinical trials including, but not limited to, investigator grants, laboratory work and analysis, database management, statistical analysis, and other items;
•amounts paid to vendors and suppliers for laboratory supplies;
•internal and third party costs related to manufacturing clinical trial materials, including vialing, packaging and testing;
•license fees and other third party vendor payments related to in-licensed product candidates and technology; and
•costs related to compliance with regulatory requirements.
It is difficult to determine with certainty the duration and completion costs of our current or future preclinical programs and clinical trials of our product candidates, or if, when or to what extent we will generate revenues from the commercialization and sale of any of our product candidates that obtain regulatory approval. The duration, costs and timing of clinical trials and development of our product candidates will depend on a variety of factors, including the uncertainties of future clinical trials and preclinical studies, uncertainties in clinical trial enrollment rates and significant and changing government regulation. In addition, the probability of success for each product candidate will depend on numerous factors,
including competition, manufacturing capability and commercial viability. We will determine which programs to pursue and how much to fund each program in response to the scientific and clinical success of each product candidate, as well as an assessment of each product candidate's commercial potential.
General and Administrative Expenses
General and administrative expenses consist of salaries and related benefit costs for employees in our executive, finance, legal and intellectual property, business development, human resources, information technology and other support functions, travel expenses and other legal and professional fees.
Other Income (Expense)
Other income (expense) consists of realized and unrealized gains and losses on equity securities and interest income earned on our cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities, offset by other expenses.
Critical Accounting Policies and Significant Judgments and Estimates
Our management's discussion and analysis of financial conditions and results of operations is based on our consolidated financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (GAAP). The preparation of these consolidated financial statements requires us to make estimates, judgments and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities as of the date of the balance sheets and the reported amount of the revenue and expenses recorded during the reporting period. We base our estimates on historical experience and on various other assumptions that we believe to be reasonable. We review and evaluate these estimates on an on-going basis. These assumptions and estimates form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities and amounts that have been recorded as revenues and expenses. Actual results and experiences may differ from these estimates. The results of any material revisions would be reflected in the consolidated financial statements prospectively from the date of the change in estimate.
While a summary of significant accounting policies is described fully in Note 2 in our consolidated financial statements, we believe that the following accounting policies are the most critical to assist you in fully understanding and evaluating our financial results and the effect of the estimates and judgments we used in preparing our consolidated financial statements.
We expect to launch MARGENZA in March 2021, but have not generated any revenue from product sales to date.
We recognize revenue under Accounting Standards Update (ASU) No. 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers and all related amendments (collectively ASC 606) when our customer obtains control of promised goods or services, in an amount that reflects the consideration which we expect to receive in exchange for those goods or services. To determine revenue recognition for arrangements that we determine are within the scope of ASC 606, management performs the following five steps: (i) identify the contract(s) with a customer; (ii) identify the performance obligations in the contract; (iii) determine the transaction price; (iv) allocate the transaction price to the performance obligations in the contract; and (v) recognize revenue when (or as) we satisfy a performance obligation. We recognize as revenue the amount of the transaction price that is allocated to the respective performance obligation when (or as) the performance obligation is satisfied.
We enter into licensing agreements that are within the scope of ASC 606, under which we may license rights to research, develop, manufacture and commercialize our product candidates to third parties. The terms of these arrangements typically include payment to us of one or more of the following: non-refundable, upfront license fees; reimbursement of certain costs; customer option exercise fees; development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments; and royalties on net sales of licensed products. We may also enter into development and manufacturing service agreements with our collaborators.
For each arrangement that results in revenues, we identify all performance obligations, which may include a license to intellectual property and know-how, research and development activities, transition activities and/or manufacturing services. In order to determine the transaction price, in addition to any upfront payment, management estimates the amount of variable consideration at the outset of the contract either utilizing the expected value or most likely amount method, depending on the facts and circumstances relative to the contract. We constrain (reduce) the estimates of variable consideration such that it is probable that a significant reversal of previously recognized revenue will not occur. When determining if variable consideration should be constrained, management considers whether there are factors outside our control that could result in a significant reversal of revenue. In making these assessments, management considers the likelihood and magnitude of a potential reversal of revenue. These estimates are re-assessed each reporting period as required.
Once the estimated transaction price is established, amounts are allocated to the performance obligations that have been identified. The transaction price is generally allocated to each separate performance obligation on a relative standalone selling price basis. We must develop assumptions that require judgment to determine the standalone selling price in order to account for these agreements. To determine the standalone selling price, management’s assumptions may include (i) the probability of obtaining marketing approval for the product candidate, (ii) estimates regarding the timing and the expected costs to develop and commercialize the product candidate, and (iii) estimates of future cash flows from potential product sales with respect to the product candidate. Standalone selling prices used to perform the initial allocation are not updated after contract inception. We do not include a financing component to its estimated transaction price at contract inception unless we estimate that certain performance obligations will not be satisfied within one year.
Amounts received prior to revenue recognition are recorded as deferred revenue. Amounts expected to be recognized as revenue within the 12 months following the balance sheet date are classified as current portion of deferred revenue in the accompanying consolidated balance sheets. Amounts not expected to be recognized as revenue within the 12 months following the balance sheet date are classified as deferred revenue, net of current portion.
Licenses. When we grant a license to our intellectual property, we determine whether the nature of the intellectual property to which the customer will have rights is functional intellectual property (functional IP), which has significant standalone functionality, or symbolic intellectual property (symbolic IP) which does not have significant standalone functionality. Revenue from functional IP is recognized at the point in time when control of the distinct license is transferred to the customer. Revenue from symbolic IP is recognized over the access period to our intellectual property. If the license to our intellectual property is determined to be distinct from the other promises or performance obligations identified in the arrangement, we recognize revenue from non-refundable, upfront fees allocated to the license when the license is transferred to the customer and when (or as) the customer is able to use and benefit from the license. In assessing whether a promise or performance obligation is distinct from the other promises, we consider factors such as the research, development, manufacturing and commercialization capabilities of the licensee and the availability of the associated expertise in the general marketplace. In addition, we consider whether the licensee can benefit from a promise for its intended purpose without the receipt of the remaining promise, whether the value of the promise is dependent on the unsatisfied promise, whether there are other vendors that could provide the remaining promise, and whether it is separately identifiable from the remaining promise. For licenses that are combined with other promises, management utilizes judgment to assess the nature of the combined performance obligation to determine whether the combined performance obligation is satisfied over time or at a point in time and, if over time, the appropriate method of measuring progress for purposes of recognizing revenue. We evaluate the measure of progress each reporting period and, if necessary, adjust the measure of performance and related revenue recognition. The measure of progress, and thereby periods over which revenue should be recognized, are subject to estimates by management and may change over the course of the research and development and licensing agreement. Such a change could have a material impact on the amount of revenue we record in future periods.
Research, Development and/or Manufacturing Services. The promises under our agreements may include research and development or manufacturing services to be performed by us on behalf of the counterparty. If these services are determined to be distinct from the other promises or performance obligations identified in the arrangement, we recognize the transaction price allocated to these services as revenue over time based on an appropriate measure of progress when the performance by us does not create an asset with an alternative use and we have an enforceable right to payment for the performance completed to date. If these services are determined not to be distinct from the other promises or performance obligations identified in the arrangement, we recognize the transaction price allocated to the combined performance obligation as the related performance obligations are satisfied.
Customer Options. If an arrangement contains customer options, we evaluate whether the options are material rights because they allow the customer to acquire additional goods or services for free or at a discount. If the customer options are determined to represent a material right, the material right is recognized as a separate performance obligation at the outset of the arrangement. We allocate the transaction price to material rights based on the relative standalone selling price, which is determined based on the identified discount and the probability that the customer will exercise the option. Amounts allocated to a material right are not recognized as revenue until, at the earliest, the option is exercised. If the options are deemed not to be a material right, they are excluded as performance obligations at the outset of the arrangement.
Milestone Payments. At the inception of each arrangement that includes development milestone payments, management evaluates whether the milestones are considered probable of being achieved and estimates the amount to be included in the transaction price using the most likely amount method. If it is probable that a significant revenue reversal would not occur, the associated milestone value is included in the transaction price. Milestone payments that are not within our control or the licensee's control, such as regulatory approvals, are not considered probable of being achieved until those approvals are received. We evaluate factors such as the scientific, clinical, regulatory, commercial, and other risks that must be overcome to
achieve the particular milestone in making this assessment. There is considerable judgment involved in determining whether it is probable that a significant revenue reversal would not occur. At the end of each subsequent reporting period, management reevaluates the probability of achievement of all milestones subject to constraint and, if necessary, adjusts its estimate of the overall transaction price. Any such adjustments are recorded on a cumulative catch-up basis, which would affect revenues and earnings in the period of adjustment.
Royalties. For arrangements that include sales-based royalties which are the result of a customer-vendor relationship and for which the license is deemed to be the predominant item to which the royalties relate, we recognize revenue at the later of (i) when the related sales occur, or (ii) when the performance obligation to which some or all of the royalty has been allocated has been satisfied or partially satisfied. To date, we have not recognized any royalty revenue resulting from any of our licensing arrangements.
We analyze our collaboration arrangements to assess whether such arrangements involve joint operating activities performed by parties who are both active participants in the activities and are both exposed to significant risks and rewards dependent on the commercial success of such activities. Such arrangements generally are within the scope of ASC 808, Collaborative Arrangements (ASC 808). While ASC 808 defines collaborative arrangements and provides guidance on income statement presentation, classification, and disclosures related to such arrangements, it does not address recognition and measurement matters, such as (1) determining the appropriate unit of accounting or (2) when the recognition criteria are met. Therefore, the accounting for these arrangements is either based on an analogy to other accounting literature or an accounting policy election by management. We account for certain components of the collaboration agreement that are reflective of a vendor-customer relationship (e.g., licensing arrangement) based on an analogy to ASC 606. We account for other components based on a reasonable, rational and consistently applied accounting policy election. Reimbursements from the counter-party that are the result of a collaborative relationship with the counter-party, instead of a customer relationship, such as co-development activities, are recorded as a reduction to research and development expense as the services are performed.
Research and Development Expenses, Including Clinical Trial Accruals/Expenses
Research and development expenses consist of costs we incur for our own research and development activities and costs incurred by our collaborators under cost sharing arrangements. Research and development costs consist of salaries and benefits, including related stock-based compensation, laboratory supplies and facility costs, as well as fees paid to other entities that conduct certain research and development activities on our behalf, such as CROs and contract manufacturing organizations (CMOs). Research and development costs are expensed as incurred. We receive estimates from our collaborators when we are sharing development expenses, and use these estimates to record an increase or decrease in research and development expense, depending on how much we have each spent during the period.
Clinical trial expenses are a significant component of research and development expenses, and we outsource a significant portion of these costs to third parties. Third party clinical trial expenses include investigator fees, site and patient costs, CRO costs, costs for central laboratory testing, data management and CMO costs. The accrual for site and patient costs includes inputs such as estimates of patient enrollment, patient cycles incurred, clinical site activations, and other pass-through costs. These inputs are required to be estimated due to a lag in receiving the actual clinical information from third parties. Payments for these activities are based on the terms of the individual arrangements, which may differ from the pattern of costs incurred, and are reflected on the consolidated balance sheets as a prepaid asset or accrued expenses. These third party agreements are generally cancelable, and related costs are recorded as research and development expenses as incurred. Non-refundable advance clinical payments for goods or services that will be used or rendered for future research and development activities are recorded as a prepaid asset and recognized as expense as the related goods are delivered or the related services are performed. When evaluating the adequacy of the accrued expenses, we analyze progress of the studies, including the phase or completion of events, invoices received and contracted costs. Significant judgments and estimates may be made in determining the accrued balances at the end of any reporting period. Actual results could differ from the estimates made. The historical clinical accrual estimates have not been materially different from the actual costs.
Deferred tax assets and liabilities are determined based on differences between the financial reporting and tax basis of assets and liabilities and are measured using the enacted tax rates and laws that are expected to be in effect when the differences are expected to reverse. The effect on deferred tax assets and liabilities of a change in tax rates is recognized as income in the period that such tax rate changes are enacted. The measurement of a deferred tax asset is reduced, if necessary, by a valuation allowance if it is more likely than not that some portion or all of the deferred tax asset will not be realized. Financial statement recognition of a tax position taken or expected to be taken in a tax return is determined based on a more-likely-than-not threshold of that position being sustained. If the tax position meets this threshold, the benefit to be recognized is measured as
the largest amount that is more than 50% likely to be realized upon ultimate settlement. Our policy is to record interest and penalties related to uncertain tax positions as a component of income tax expense.
We account for stock-based compensation awards in accordance with ASC Topic 718, Compensation—Stock Compensation (ASC 718). ASC 718 requires all share-based payments to employees, including grants of employee stock options, to be recognized in the consolidated statements of operations and comprehensive loss based on their grant date fair values. We estimate the grant date fair value of each option award using the Black-Scholes option pricing model. The resulting fair value is recognized on a straight-line basis over the requisite service period, which is generally the vesting period of the option. The use of a Black-Scholes model requires us to make assumptions with respect to the expected term of the option, the expected volatility of our common stock consistent with the expected term of the option, the risk-free interest rate consistent with the expected term of the option, the expected dividend yield of our common stock and the expected forfeiture rate.
Recent Accounting Pronouncements
See Note 2, Summary of Significant Accounting Policies, to the consolidated financial statements for information under the caption "Recently Issued Accounting Standards."
Results of Operations
The following represents a comparison of our revenue for the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019:
|Year Ended December 31,||Increase/(Decrease)|
|(dollars in millions)|
|Revenue from collaborative and other agreements||$||97.8 ||$||62.0 ||$||35.8 ||58 ||%|
|Revenue from government agreements||7.1 ||2.2 ||4.9 ||223 ||%|
|Total revenue||$||104.9 ||$||64.2 ||$||40.7 ||63 ||%|
The increase of $35.8 million in revenue from collaborative and other agreements for the year ended December 31, 2020 compared to the year ended December 31, 2019 was primarily due to:
•recognition of $40.0 million in development milestones from Incyte related to the further advancement of retifanlimab, including Incyte’s initiation of a Phase 3 clinical trial;
•recognition of the $20.0 million upfront license fee under the Janssen Agreement;
•recognition of a $12.0 million payment from Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH (BII) for retention of rights to two DART molecules during 2020;
•recognition of $3.6 million in milestones under the Zai Lab collaboration and license agreement (Zai Lab Agreement) during the year ended December 31, 2020; and
•$1.4 million recognized under the Incyte Commercial Supply Agreement which was executed in 2020.
These increases were partially offset by:
•a decrease of approximately $13.5 million in revenue recognized under the Incyte Clinical Supply Agreement due to decreased development activity;
•a decrease of approximately $11.1 million in revenue recognition of the deferred upfront payment under the Zai Lab Agreement during the year ended December 31, 2020 compared to the year ended December 31, 2019;
•decreased revenue recognition of approximately $10.6 million of the Les Laboratoires Servier and Institut de Recherches Servier (collectively, Servier) flotetuzumab license grant fee during the year ended December 31, 2020 due to Servier's notice of their intention to terminate the agreement effective January 15, 2020; and
•decreased revenue recognition of $6.0 million of the F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd and Hoffmann-La Roche Inc. (Roche) upfront payment during the year ended December 31, 2020 due to Roche's termination of the agreement effective November 2019.
The increase of $4.9 million in revenue from government agreements for the year ended December 31, 2020 compared to the year ended December 31, 2019 was primarily due to increased clinical trial activity of MGD014 and development of the second DART molecule.
Research and Development Expenses
The following represents a comparison of our research and development expenses for the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019:
|Year Ended December 31,||Increase/(Decrease)|
|(dollars in millions)|
|Margetuximab||$||49.5 ||$||52.2 ||$||(2.7)||(5)||%|
|Flotetuzumab (a)||26.6 ||15.1 ||11.5 ||76 ||%|
|Tebotelimab||23.5 ||22.5 ||1.0 ||4 ||%|
|Retifanlimab||22.7 ||19.7 ||3.0 ||15 ||%|
|Enoblituzumab||14.2 ||20.7 ||(6.5)||(31)||%|
|MGC018||12.8 ||12.6 ||0.2 ||2 ||%|
|MGD019||8.6 ||7.0 ||1.6 ||23 ||%|
|DART molecules under HIV government contract||7.0 ||2.9 ||4.1 ||141 ||%|
|IMGC936||4.3 ||6.2 ||(1.9)||(31)||%|
|MGD024||3.3 ||3.5 ||(0.2)||(6)||%|
|Other programs (b)||20.7 ||32.9 ||(12.2)||(37)||%|
|Total research and development expenses||$||193.2 ||$||195.3 ||$||(2.1)||(1)||%|
(a) 2019 expenses are shown net of reimbursements from collaboration partner.
(b) Includes research and discovery projects, as well as early preclinical and terminated molecules.
Research and development expenses for the year ended December 31, 2020 decreased by $2.1 million compared to the year ended December 31, 2019. This decrease was primarily attributable to:
•decreased clinical trial costs related to our enoblituzumab studies;
•decreased costs related to margetuximab postBiologics License Application submission; and
•decreased spend on certain preclinical programs as well as decreased clinical trial costs related to MGD007 and MGD009 as these programs have been discontinued;
These decreases were partially offset by:
•increased flotetuzumab development costs due to increased clinical trial enrollment and regulatory costs, and the end of cost sharing with Servier;
•increased development and manufacturing costs related to the second DART molecule under our contract with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID); and
•increased development and manufacturing costs related to retifanlimab due to timing of manufacturing activities for Incyte.
General and Administrative Expenses
The following represents a comparison of our general and administrative expenses for the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019:
|Year Ended December 31,||Increase/(Decrease)|
|(dollars in millions)|
|General and administrative expenses||$||42.7 ||$||46.1 ||$||(3.4)||(7)||%|
General and administrative expenses decreased for the year ended December 31, 2020 by $3.4 million compared to 2019 primarily due to decreased spend on external expenses, including consulting.
Other Income (Expense)
The decrease in other income of $24.1 million for the year ended December 31, 2020 compared to the year ended December 31, 2019 is primarily due to the revaluation at June 30, 2019 of the warrants received under the Provention License Agreement and Asset Purchase Agreement and decreased investment income. The warrants were exercised, and the acquired shares subsequently sold, during 2019, therefore no such revaluation is reflected in other income during the year ended December 31, 2020.
Liquidity and Capital Resources
Our multiple product candidates currently under development will require significant additional research and development efforts that include extensive preclinical studies and clinical testing, and regulatory approval prior to commercial use.
As a biotechnology company, we have primarily funded our operations with proceeds from the sale of our common stock in equity offerings, revenue from our multiple collaboration agreements, and contracts and grants from NIAID. Management regularly reviews our available liquidity relative to our operating budget and forecast to monitor the sufficiency of our working capital, and anticipates continuing to draw upon available sources of capital, including equity and debt instruments, to support our product development activities. There can be no assurances that new sources of capital will be available to us on commercially acceptable terms, if at all. Also, any future collaborations, strategic alliances and marketing, distribution or licensing arrangements may require us to give up some or all rights to a product or technology at less than its full potential value. If we are unable to enter into new arrangements or to perform under current or future agreements or obtain additional capital, we will assess our capital resources and may be required to delay, reduce the scope of, or eliminate one or more of our product research and development programs or clinical studies, and/or downsize our organization. Although it is difficult to predict our funding requirements, we anticipate that our cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities as of December 31, 2020, anticipated and potential collaboration payments, and product revenues should enable us to fund our operations into 2023, assuming our programs and collaborations advance as currently contemplated.
Similar to the other risk factors pertinent to our business, the COVID-19 outbreak might unfavorably impact our ability to generate such additional funding. Given the uncertainty in the rapidly changing market and economic conditions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will continue to evaluate the nature and extent of the impact of the outbreak on our business and financial position.
The following table represents a summary of our cash flows for the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019:
|Year Ended December 31,||Increase/(Decrease)|
|(dollars in millions)|
|Net cash provided by (used in):|
|Operating activities||$||(111.9)||$||(134.3)||$||22.4 ||17 ||%|
|Investing activities||(7.8)||(79.4)||71.6 ||90 ||%|
|Financing activities||174.3 ||120.0 ||54.3 ||45 ||%|
|Net increase (decrease) in cash and cash equivalents||$||54.6 ||$||(93.7)||$||148.3 ||158 ||%|
Net cash provided by or used in operating activities reflects, among other things, the amounts used to advance our clinical trials and preclinical activities. The principal use of cash in operating activities for all periods presented was primarily the result of our net loss, adjusted for non-cash items, with the year ended December 31, 2020 benefiting from the $40.0 million in milestone payments received from Incyte, the $20.0 million upfront payment from Janssen, and the $12.0 million received from BII. The year ended December 31, 2019 benefited from the $22.5 million net upfront payment from Zai Lab and the $15.0 million upfront payment from I-Mab.
Net cash used in investing activities during the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019 is primarily due to purchases of marketable securities, partially offset by maturities of marketable securities.
Net cash provided by financing activities for the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019 reflects net cash proceeds from our securities offerings of approximately $170.5 million and $118.7 million, respectively, and cash from stock option exercises and the purchase of shares under our employee stock purchase plan.
Contractual Obligations and Contingent Liabilities
Our current obligations and contingent liabilities are limited to the operating leases at our facilities in Maryland and California. The following table represents future minimum operating lease payments under non-cancelable operating leases as of December 31, 2020:
|Total||Less than 1 year||1 to 3 years||3 to 5 years||More than 5 years|
|Operating Leases||$||39.1 ||$||6.7 ||$||13.7 ||$||10.9 ||$||7.8 |
Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements
We do not have any off-balance sheet arrangements, as defined under the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
ITEM 7A. QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK
Our primary objective when considering our investment activities is to preserve capital in order to fund our operations. We also seek to maximize income from our investments without assuming significant risk. Our current investment policy is to invest principally in deposits and securities issued by the U.S. government and its agencies, Government Sponsored Enterprise agency debt obligations, corporate debt obligations and money market instruments. As of December 31, 2020, we had cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities of $272.5 million. Our primary exposure to market risk is related to changes in interest rates. Due to the short-term maturities of our cash equivalents and marketable securities and the low risk profile of our marketable securities, an immediate 100 basis point change in interest rates would not have a material effect on the fair market value of our cash equivalents and marketable securities. We have the ability to hold our marketable securities until maturity, and we therefore do not expect a change in market interest rates to affect our operating results or cash flows to any significant degree.
ITEM 8. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND SUPPLEMENTARY DATA
The information required by this item is set forth beginning on page F-1 in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
ITEM 9. CHANGES AND DISAGREEMENTS WITH ACCOUNTANTS ON ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE
ITEM 9A. CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES
Disclosure Controls and Procedures
Our management, including our principal executive and principal financial officers, has evaluated the effectiveness of our disclosure controls and procedures as of December 31, 2020. Our disclosure controls and procedures are designed to provide reasonable assurance that the information required to be disclosed in this Annual Report on Form 10-K has been appropriately recorded, processed, summarized and reported within the time periods specified in the Securities and Exchange Commission's rules and forms, and that such information is accumulated and communicated to our management, including our principal executive and principal financial officers, to allow timely decisions regarding required disclosure. Based on that evaluation, our principal executive and principal financial officers have concluded that our disclosure controls and procedures are effective at the reasonable assurance level.
Changes in Internal Control
Our management, including our principal executive and principal financial officers, has evaluated any changes in our internal control over financial reporting that occurred during the quarterly period ended December 31, 2020, and has concluded that there was no change that occurred during the quarterly period ended December 31, 2020 that have materially affected, or are reasonably likely to materially effect, the Company's internal control over financial reporting.
Management's Report on Internal Control over Financial Reporting
The management of the Company is responsible for establishing and maintaining adequate internal control over financial reporting. Internal control over financial reporting is defined in Rule 13a-15(f) or 15d-15(f) promulgated under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, as a process designed by, or under the supervision of, the Company's principal executive and principal financial officers and effected by the Company's board of directors, management and other personnel, to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation of financial statements for external purposes in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and includes those policies and procedures that:
•pertain to the management of records that in reasonable detail accurately and fairly reflect the transactions and dispositions of the assets of the Company;
•provide reasonable assurance that transactions are recorded as necessary to permit preparation of financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, and that receipts and expenditures of the Company are being made only in accordance with authorizations of management and directors of the Company; and
•provide reasonable assurance regarding prevention or timely detection of unauthorized acquisition, use or disposition of the Company's assets that could have a material effect on the financial statements.
Because of its inherent limitations, internal control over financial reporting may not prevent or detect misstatements. Projections of any evaluation of effectiveness to future periods are subject to the risk that controls may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or that the degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate. All internal control systems, no matter how well designed, have inherent limitations. Therefore, even those systems determined to be effective can provide only reasonable assurance with respect to financial statement preparation and presentation.
The Company's management assessed the effectiveness of the Company's internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2020. In making this assessment, the Company's management used the criteria set forth by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (2013 framework) (COSO) in Internal Control-Integrated Framework. Based on our assessment, management believes that, as of December 31, 2020, the Company's internal control over financial reporting is effective based on those criteria.
The effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2020 has been audited by Ernst & Young, LLP, an independent registered public accounting firm, as stated in their report which is included herein on the following page.
ITEM 9B. OTHER INFORMATION
Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
To the Shareholders and the Board of Directors of MacroGenics, Inc.
Opinion on Internal Control over Financial Reporting
We have audited MacroGenics, Inc.’s internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2020, based on criteria established in Internal Control-Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (2013 framework) (the COSO criteria). In our opinion, MacroGenics, Inc. (the Company) maintained, in all material respects, effective internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2020, based on the COSO criteria.
We also have audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (PCAOB), the consolidated balance sheets of the Company as of December 31, 2020 and 2019, the related consolidated statements of operations and comprehensive loss, stockholders’ equity and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 31, 2020, and the related notes and our report dated February 25, 2021, expressed an unqualified opinion thereon.
Basis for Opinion
The Company’s management is responsible for maintaining effective internal control over financial reporting and for its assessment of the effectiveness of internal control over financial reporting included in the accompanying Management’s Report on Internal Control over Financial Reporting. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s internal control over financial reporting based on our audit. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
We conducted our audit in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether effective internal control over financial reporting was maintained in all material respects.
Our audit included obtaining an understanding of internal control over financial reporting, assessing the risk that a material weakness exists, testing and evaluating the design and operating effectiveness of internal control based on the assessed risk, and performing such other procedures as we considered necessary in the circumstances. We believe that our audit provides a reasonable basis for our opinion.
Definition and Limitations of Internal Control Over Financial Reporting
A company’s internal control over financial reporting is a process designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation of financial statements for external purposes in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. A company’s internal control over financial reporting includes those policies and procedures that (1) pertain to the maintenance of records that, in reasonable detail, accurately and fairly reflect the transactions and dispositions of the assets of the company; (2) provide reasonable assurance that transactions are recorded as necessary to permit preparation of financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, and that receipts and expenditures of the company are being made only in accordance with authorizations of management and directors of the company; and (3) provide reasonable assurance regarding prevention or timely detection of unauthorized acquisition, use, or disposition of the company’s assets that could have a material effect on the financial statements.
Because of its inherent limitations, internal control over financial reporting may not prevent or detect misstatements. Also, projections of any evaluation of effectiveness to future periods are subject to the risk that controls may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or that the degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate.
/s/ Ernst & Young LLP
February 25, 2021
ITEM 10. DIRECTORS, EXECUTIVE OFFICERS AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE
We incorporate herein by reference the relevant information concerning directors, executive officers and corporate governance to be included in our definitive proxy statement for the 2021 annual meeting of stockholders (the 2021 Proxy Statement).
ITEM 11. EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION
We incorporate herein by reference the relevant information concerning executive compensation to be included in the 2021 Proxy Statement.
ITEM 12. SECURITY OWNERSHIP OF CERTAIN BENEFICIAL OWNERS AND MANAGEMENT AND RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS
We incorporate herein by reference the relevant information concerning security ownership of certain beneficial owners and management to be included in the 2021 Proxy Statement.
ITEM 13. CERTAIN RELATIONSHIPS AND RELATED TRANSACTIONS, AND DIRECTOR INDEPENDENCE
We incorporate herein by reference the relevant information concerning certain other relationships and related transactions to be included in the 2021 Proxy Statement.
ITEM 14. PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES
We incorporate herein by reference the relevant information concerning principal accountant fees and services to be included in the 2021 Proxy Statement.
ITEM 15. EXHIBITS AND FINANCIAL STATEMENT SCHEDULES
(a) The following documents are filed as part of this Annual Report on Form 10-K:
1.Consolidated Financial Statements:
|Report of Ernst & Young LLP, Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm|
|Consolidated Balance Sheets|
|Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Loss|
|Consolidated Statements of Stockholders' Equity|
|Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows|
|Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements|
2.Financial Statement Schedules:
All financial statement schedules have been omitted because they are not applicable, not required or the information required is shown in the financial statements or the notes thereto.
The exhibits filed as part of this Annual Report on Form 10-K are set forth on the Exhibit Index immediately following our consolidated financial statements. The Exhibit Index is incorporated herein by reference.
ITEM 16. FORM 10-K SUMMARY
Pursuant to the requirements of Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Act of 1934, the registrant has duly caused this report to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned, thereunto duly authorized:
| ||MacroGenics, Inc.|
| || |
| ||By:||/s/ Scott Koenig|
| || ||Scott Koenig, M.D., Ph.D.|
| || ||President and CEO and Director|
Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Act of 1934, as amended, this Report has been signed by the following persons on behalf of the registrant and in the capacities and on the dates indicated:
|Signature|| ||Title|| ||Date|
| || || || || |
|/s/ Scott Koenig|| ||President and CEO and Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Scott Koenig, M.D., Ph.D.|| ||(Principal Executive Officer)|| || |
| || || || || |
|/s/ James Karrels|| ||Senior Vice President, Chief Financial|| ||February 25, 2021|
|James Karrels|| ||Officer and Secretary (Principal Financial Officer)|| || |
| || || || || |
|/s/ Lynn Cilinski|| ||Vice President, Controller and Treasurer|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Lynn Cilinski|| ||(Principal Accounting Officer)|| || |
| || || || || |
|/s/ Paulo Costa|| ||Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Paulo Costa|| || || || |
|/s/ Karen Ferrante, M.D.||Director||February 25, 2021|
|Karen Ferrante, M.D.|| |
| || || || || |
|/s/ Kenneth Galbraith|| ||Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Kenneth Galbraith|| || || || |
| || || || || |
|/s/ Edward Hurwitz|| ||Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Edward Hurwitz|| || || || |
|/s/ Scott Jackson||Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Scott Jackson|| |
|/s/ Federica O’Brien||Director||February 25, 2021|
|/s/ Jay Siegel, M.D.||Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|Jay Siegel, M.D.|| |
| || || || || |
|/s/ David Stump, M.D.|| ||Director|| ||February 25, 2021|
|David Stump, M.D.|| || || || |
INDEX TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
To the Shareholders and the Board of Directors of MacroGenics, Inc.
Opinion on the Financial Statements
We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of MacroGenics, Inc. (the Company) as of December 31, 2020 and 2019, the related consolidated statements of operations and comprehensive loss, stockholders’ equity and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 31, 2020, and the related notes (collectively referred to as the “consolidated financial statements”). In our opinion, the consolidated financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company at December 31, 2020 and 2019, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 31, 2020, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.
We also have audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (PCAOB), the Company’s internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2020, based on criteria established in Internal Control-Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (2013 framework) and our report dated February 25, 2021 expressed an unqualified opinion thereon.
Basis for Opinion
These financial statements are the responsibility of the Company’s management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s consolidated financial statements based on our audits. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. Our audits included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the consolidated financial statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the consolidated financial statements. Our audits also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the consolidated financial statements. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.
Critical Audit Matter
The critical audit matter communicated below is a matter arising from the current period audit of the financial statements that was communicated or required to be communicated to the audit committee and that: (1) relates to accounts or disclosures that are material to the financial statements and (2) involved our especially challenging, subjective or complex judgments. The communication of the critical audit matter does not alter in any way our opinion on the consolidated financial statements, taken as a whole, and we are not, by communicating the critical audit matter below, providing a separate opinion on the critical audit matter or on the account or disclosure to which it relates.
Clinical Trial Accruals
|Description of the Matter|
As disclosed in Note 2 to the consolidated financial statements, the Company expenses research and development expenditures as incurred, which include costs relating to clinical trial activities. The Company accrues costs for clinical trial activities based upon estimates of the services received and related expenses incurred that have yet to be invoiced by the clinical research organizations (CROs), investigators, professional service providers, and other vendors providing development services (collectively, the “service providers”). The Company’s clinical trial accrual balance at December 31, 2020 is included in accrued expenses and other current liabilities of $34.2 million on the consolidated balance sheet, and the Company’s related 2020 clinical trial expenses are included in research and development costs and expenses of $193.2 million on the consolidated statement of operations and comprehensive loss for the year ended December 31, 2020.
|Auditing the Company’s accruals for clinical trial costs involved complex and subjective auditor judgment due to the significant estimation required by management in determining the progress to completion of services that have been performed by the service providers and the associated costs that will be invoiced by the service providers subsequent to the date that the consolidated financial statements are issued.|
|How We Addressed the Matter in Our Audit||We obtained an understanding, evaluated the design, and tested the operating effectiveness of controls addressing the identified risks related to the Company’s process for estimating accrued clinical trial costs. For example, we tested controls over management’s review of the clinical trial expense calculations, the significant assumptions about the status of research and development services incurred, and the completeness and accuracy of the data used to calculate the estimates.|
To test the clinical trial accruals, our audit procedures included, among others, reviewing a sample of agreements with the service providers to corroborate key financial and contractual terms, and testing the accuracy and completeness of the underlying data used in the accrual computations. We also evaluated management’s estimates of the progress of a sample of clinical trials by making direct inquiries of the Company’s operations personnel that oversee the clinical trials and obtaining information directly from certain service providers about the service providers’ estimate of costs that had been incurred through December 31, 2020. To evaluate the completeness of the accruals, we also examined subsequent invoices from the service providers and cash disbursements to the service providers, to the extent such invoices were received, or payments were made prior to the date that the consolidated financial statements were issued.
|/s/ Ernst & Young LLP|
|We have served as the Company's auditor since 2006.|
|February 25, 2021|
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(In thousands, except share and per share data)
|Cash and cash equivalents||$||181,131 ||$||126,472 |
|Marketable securities||91,400 ||89,284 |
|Accounts receivable||23,081 ||12,744 |
|Prepaid expenses and other current assets||16,982 ||11,285 |
|Total current assets||312,594 ||239,785 |
|Property, equipment and software, net||42,225 ||48,211 |
|Other assets||23,924 ||24,505 |
|Total assets||$||378,743 ||$||312,501 |
|Liabilities and stockholders' equity|
|Accounts payable||$||8,031 ||$||4,308 |
|Accrued expenses and other current liabilities||34,198 ||27,139 |
|Deferred revenue||4,456 ||10,700 |
|Lease liabilities||3,988 ||3,020 |
|Total current liabilities||50,673 ||45,167 |
|Deferred revenue, net of current portion||6,926 ||9,153 |
|Lease liabilities, net of current portion||25,260 ||27,553 |
|Total liabilities||82,859 ||81,873 |
Common stock, $0.01 par value -- 125,000,000 shares authorized, 56,244,771 and 48,958,763 shares outstanding at December 31, 2020 and December 31, 2019, respectively
|562 ||490 |
|Additional paid-in capital||1,067,150 ||872,204 |
|Accumulated other comprehensive income (loss)||(7)||16 |
|Total stockholders' equity||295,884 ||230,628 |
|Total liabilities and stockholders' equity||$||378,743 ||$||312,501 |
See accompanying notes.
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS AND COMPREHENSIVE LOSS
(In thousands, except share and per share data)
| ||Year Ended December 31,|
|Revenue from collaborative and other agreements||$||97,764 ||$||62,024 ||$||58,644 |
|Revenue from government agreements||7,119 ||2,164 ||1,477 |
|Total revenues||104,883 ||64,188 ||60,121 |
|Costs and expenses:|| |
|Research and development||193,201 ||195,309 ||190,827 |
|General and administrative||42,742 ||46,064 ||40,500 |
|Total costs and expenses||235,943 ||241,373 ||231,327 |
|Loss from operations||(131,060)||(177,185)||(171,206)|
|Other income (expense)||1,321 ||25,374 ||(247)|
|Other comprehensive loss:|| |
|Unrealized gain (loss) on investments||(23)||19 ||58 |
|Basic and diluted net loss per common share||$||(2.47)||$||(3.16)||$||(4.19)|
|Basic and diluted weighted average number of common shares||52,442,389 ||48,082,728 ||40,925,318 |
See accompanying notes.
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY
(In thousands, except share amounts)
|Common Stock||Treasury Stock|
Comprehensive Income (Loss)
|Balance, December 31, 2017||36,859,077 ||$||369 ||— |