Thursday, July 10, 2008
THE WOODLANDS, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Opexa Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:OPXA), a company leading in the development of cell therapies for multiple sclerosis announced today that the Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) overseeing the on-going Phase IIb clinical study of Tovaxin has recommended that the trial continue unmodified. This positive recommendation follows a regularly scheduled meeting of the DSMB in June and is based upon an evaluation of clinical, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and safety data that had been recorded for all patients to date.
The TERMS trial (Tovaxin for Early Relapsing Multiple Sclerosis) is nearing completion and the DSMB has two additional scheduled meetings in July and August of this year. Tovaxin is being evaluated in a multi-center, randomized, double blind, placebo controlled study in 150 patients suffering from Relapse Remitting Multiple Sclerosis (RRMS) or Clinically Isolated Syndrome (CIS).
The trial was initiated in the third quarter of 2006 and enrollment was completed in the second quarter of 2007. Dosing was completed in the first quarter of 2008 and currently patients are completing their final weeks 44 and 52 follow-up visits. The primary endpoint being evaluated in this trial is the cumulative number of contrast (gadolinium) enhancing brain lesions (CEL) using MRI, an important and objective measure of MS disease activity. Secondary endpoints include Annualized Relapse Rate (ARR) and additional MRI measurements.
Opexa expects to announce top line results in September 2008.
Tovaxin is an individualized T-cell therapeutic vaccine that consists of attenuated patient-specific myelin-reactive T-cells (MRTCs) against peptides of proteins from Myelin basic protein (MBP), Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG) and Proteolipid protein (PLP) or combinations thereof. Recently announced two-year follow up data from Phase I/II clinical studies of 22 patients showed 73% of patients on Tovaxin remained relapse free after two years with 86% experiencing no disease progression. Tovaxin is manufactured in Opexa’s in-house cGMP facility.
Opexa Therapeutics develops and commercializes cell therapies to treat autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes. The Company is focused on autologous cellular therapy applications of its proprietary T-cell and stem cell therapies. The Company's lead product is Tovaxin, a T-cell therapy for multiple sclerosis is in Phase IIb trials. The Company holds the exclusive worldwide license for adult multipotent stem cells derived from mononuclear cells of peripheral blood. The technology allows large quantities of monocyte-derived stem cells to be produced efficiently for use in autologous therapy, thus circumventing the threat of rejection. The Company is in preclinical development for diabetes mellitus. For more information visit the Opexa Therapeutics website at www.opexatherapeutics.com.
Cautionary Statement Relating to Forward - Looking Information for the Purpose of "Safe Harbor" Provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995
This press release contains "forward-looking statements," including statements about Opexa Therapeutics' growth and future operating results, discovery and development of products, strategic alliances and intellectual property, as well as other matters that are not historical facts or information. These forward-looking statements are based on management's current assumptions and expectations and involve risks, uncertainties and other important factors, specifically including those relating to Opexa Therapeutics' ability to obtain additional funding, develop its stem cell technologies, obtain FDA approval for its therapeutic products, achieve its operational objectives, and obtain patent protection for its discoveries, that may cause Opexa Therapeutics' actual results to be materially different from any future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Opexa Therapeutics undertakes no obligation to update or revise any such forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.