SAN ANTONIO, Dec. 15, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Immunomedics, Inc., (Nasdaq:IMMU) today announced that a new pretargeted imaging system developed by IBC Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IBC), the Company's majority-owned subsidiary, has the potential of offering better definition of breast cancer (BC) metastasis when compared to conventional imaging methods.
Different imaging methods are available to detect BC recurrence, but several new noninvasive antibody-based imaging methods are currently being investigated. These include IBC's pretargeted imaging system based on TF2, in combination with a radiolabeled peptide for the positron emission tomography (PET) imaging of BC. TF2 is a bispecific antibody created by the Company's patented DOCK-AND-LOCK® protein conjugation technology to bind to the carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA or CEACAM5) expressed by BC cells, and the peptide IMP288.
The objective of this pilot study was to evaluate the potential of TF2 and IMP288 radiolabeled with gallium-68 (68Ga) in the imaging of advanced metastatic BC, using morphological imaging and 18F-FDG as references. Caroline Rousseau, MD, PhD, of Cancer Research Center Nantes-Angers in Nantes, France, presented preliminary results from this investigator-sponsored study at the 2014 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in San Antonio, TX.
Eleven BC patients, assessed in 4 cohorts, were first administered TF2 followed by 68Ga-IMP288 24 to 30 hours later. Patients then underwent whole-body immuno-PET and computed tomography (CT) scanning 1 and 2 hours after injection of the radiolabeled peptide. In addition to thoracic-abdominal-pelvic CT and FDG-PET/CT, bone and brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) were also performed in some cases.
ImmunoPET (IPET) imaging with TF2 and 68Ga-IMP288 demonstrated a high sensitivity for liver, lymph nodes, and bone metastases, and a higher overall sensitivity (93.2%) than FDG PET (88.5%) and CT (71.9%) (except for lung).
"These results demonstrate the promise of anti-CEA pretargeted immuno-PET for staging metastatic CEA positive BC patients," remarked Cynthia L. Sullivan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Immunomedics.
Immunomedics is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing monoclonal antibody-based products for the targeted treatment of cancer, autoimmune disorders and other serious diseases. Immunomedics' advanced proprietary technologies allow the Company to create humanized antibodies that can be used either alone in unlabeled or "naked" form, or conjugated with radioactive isotopes, chemotherapeutics, cytokines or toxins. Using these technologies, Immunomedics has built a pipeline of nine clinical-stage product candidates. Immunomedics has an ongoing collaboration with UCB, S.A. (UCB), to whom the Company licensed epratuzumab for the treatment of all non-cancer indications worldwide. UCB expects Phase 3 data in systemic lupus erythematosus in the first half of 2015. Immunomedics is exploring epratuzumab in oncology in collaboration with independent cancer study groups. Immunomedics' most advanced candidate to which it retains worldwide rights for all indications is 90Y-clivatuzumab tetraxetan. The Company initiated a Phase 3 registration trial in January 2014 in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer and expects topline data in mid-2016. Immunomedics' portfolio of wholly owned product candidates also includes antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) that are designed to deliver a specific payload of a chemotherapeutic directly to the tumor while reducing overall toxic effects that are usually found with conventional administration of these chemotherapeutic agents. Immunomedics' most advanced ADCs are sacituzumab govitecan (IMMU-132) and labetuzumab govitecan (IMMU-130), which are in Phase 2 trials for a number of solid tumors and metastatic colorectal cancer, respectively. Immunomedics also has a number of other product candidates that target solid tumors and hematologic malignancies, as well as other diseases, in various stages of clinical and pre-clinical development. These include bispecific antibodies targeting cancers and infectious diseases as T-cell redirecting immunotherapies, as well as bispecific antibodies for next-generation cancer and autoimmune disease therapies, created using its patented DOCK-AND-LOCK® protein conjugation technology. The Company believes that its portfolio of intellectual property, which includes approximately 261 active patents in the United States and more than 400 foreign patents, protects its product candidates and technologies. Immunomedics' strength in intellectual property has resulted in a top-8 ranking in the Biotechnology industry by the Patent Board for the 2014 fiscal year. For additional information on the Company, please visit its website at www.immunomedics.com. The information on its website does not, however, form a part of this press release.
This release, in addition to historical information, may contain forward-looking statements made pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements, including statements regarding clinical trials (including the funding therefor, outcomes, timing or associated costs), out-licensing arrangements (including the timing and amount of contingent payments), forecasts of future operating results, potential collaborations, and capital raising activities, involve significant risks and uncertainties and actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied herein. Factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to, availability of required financing and other sources of funds on acceptable terms, if at all, new product development (including clinical trials outcome and regulatory requirements/actions), our dependence on UCB for the further development of epratuzumab for non-cancer indications, risks associated with the outcome of pending litigation and competitive risks to marketed products, as well as the risks discussed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company is not under any obligation, and the Company expressly disclaims any obligation, to update or alter any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
CONTACT: For More Information: Dr. Chau Cheng Senior Director, Investor Relations & Grant Management (973) 605-8200, extension 123 email@example.comSource:Immunomedics, Inc.