AVANT Immunotherapeutics Announces Hart-Scott Rodino Clearance to License Cancer Vaccine to Pfizer

Wednesday, May 21, 2008 General News
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PHILLIPSBURG, N.J., May 21 Celldex Therapeutics (awholly-owned subsidiary of AVANT Immunotherapeutics, Nasdaq: AVAN) announcedtoday it has received Federal Trade Commission approval under the Hart-ScottRodino (HSR) Act, clearing AVANT's proposal to award Pfizer (NYSE: PFE)exclusive rights to CDX-110, an investigational vaccine currently underdevelopment.

On April 16, 2008, Pfizer, Inc. and Celldex announced that they enteredinto an agreement under which Pfizer would be granted an exclusive worldwidelicense to CDX-110, currently being evaluated in a Phase 2 study for thetreatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The agreement also gives Pfizerexclusive rights to the use of this vaccine targeting the tumor specific EGFRmutant EGFRvIII in other potential indications.

About CDX-110

CDX-110 is designed to induce or enhance the body's immune responsesagainst EGFRvIII resulting in destruction of tumor cells that express thevariant receptor. Single arm Phase 2 clinical trials of CDX-110 incombination with the current standard treatment for patients with GBM havebeen conducted. Updated clinical data will be released at the AmericanSociety for Clinical Oncology Meeting in Chicago on June 2, 2008. Arandomized Phase 2 trial is currently enrolling at 24 sites across the UnitedStates.

About AVANT Immunotherapeutics, Inc.

AVANT Immunotherapeutics and Celldex Therapeutics combined during thefirst quarter of 2008. AVANT is a Nasdaq-listed company discovering anddeveloping innovative vaccines and targeted immunotherapeutics for thetreatment of cancer, infectious and inflammatory diseases. AVANT focuses onthe use of tumor-specific targets and human monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) toprecisely deliver therapeutic agents through its novel "targeted immunization"approach. In addition, AVANT is exploiting its access to proprietary humanantibody technology for development of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies(mAbs). AVANT's deep product pipeline consists of products in varying stagesof development. Identification of the potential of EGFRvIII in cancerdiagnosis, prevention and therapy was based on the collaborative efforts ofDr. Bert Vogelstein and Dr. Albert Wong at Johns Hopkins University and Dr.Darell Bigner at Duke University. Application of this discovery toward thedevelopment of the CDX-110 vaccine was further advanced by Dr. John Sampsonand his colleagues at the Duke University Brain Tumor Center in collaborationwith Dr. Amy Heimberger at the MD Anderson Cancer Center. AVANT has severalother product candidates in its development pipeline including:

AVANT has three commercialized products, including Rotarix(R) (partneredwith GSK) for the prevention of rotavirus infection and two human food safetyvaccines for reducing salmonella infection in chickens and eggs. Additionalinformation on AVANT Immunotherapeutics, Inc. can be obtained through its website http://www.avantimmune.com.-- CDX-1307, a product based on its proprietary APC Targeting Technology(TM), which is in two Phase 1 clinical trials for patients with advanced pancreatic, bladder, breast and colon cancer; -- TP10, a complement inhibitor, in development for transplantation and other indications; and -- Three candidates based on oral, rapidly-protecting, single-dose and temperature-stable vaccine technology, including combination vaccines for travellers, the military and global health needs.

SOURCE Celldex Therapeutics

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