Epizyme (EPZM) Skyrockets On Milestone Payments And Numbers Expectations
Seeking Alpha Analyst Since 2010
Epizyme, Inc. (EPZM)
Shares of EPZM soared on Tuesday's trading session after the company reported the achievement of the proof of concept (POC) milestone in the EPZ-5676 DOT1L inhibitor clinical program, earning a $25 million payment under the company's collaboration with Celgene Corporation.
The milestone was triggered by objective responses in patients with translocations of the MLL gene (MLL-r). These patients are currently enrolled in the fourth dose cohort in the dose escalation stage of the ongoing Phase 1 clinical study and are receiving uninterrupted treatment with EPZ-5676.
EPZM also said that a development candidate milestone has been achieved for one of the three histone methyltransferase (HMT) targets included in the company's collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), earning a $4 million payment.
Additionally, the European Medicines Agency's Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products recommended orphan drug designation for EPZ-5676 to the European Commission in December 2013. EPZ-5676 was granted orphan drug designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in May 2013
Including the Celgene POC milestone and the GSK development candidate milestone, EPZM estimates a 2013 end-of-year cash and account receivables position of approximately $145 million versus previous guidance of an end-of-year cash position of more than $115 million.
EPZM is developing EPZ-5676, a small molecule inhibitor of DOT1L created with the company's proprietary product platform, for the treatment of patients with acute leukemia in which the MLL gene is rearranged due to a chromosomal translocation (MLL-r) or a partial tandem duplication (MLL-PTD). Due to these rearrangements, DOT1L is misregulated, resulting in the increased expression of genes causing leukemia.
EPZM believes that EPZ-5676 was the first HMTi to enter human clinical development.
EPZM is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company creating personalized therapeutics for patients with genetically defined cancers.
More about Epizyme, Inc. (EPZM) at www.epizyme.com
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