El-Hibri Fuad Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Emergent Biosolutions Inc

ROCKVILLE, Md., Jan 25, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Emergent BioSolutions Inc. (NYSE: EBS) today announced the initiation of a Phase Ib/II study (16201) of TRU-016 for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). TRU-016 is a CD37-directed Small Modular ImmunoPharmaceutical (SMIP(TM)) protein therapeutic in development for the treatment of B-cell malignancies. TRU-016 is being developed in collaboration with Abbott.

The open-label, multi-center, active-controlled study is expected to enroll up to 114 bendamustine-naïve patients with a confirmed diagnosis of relapsed CLL and who have failed up to three previous treatments. The Phase Ib portion of the study will determine a safe and tolerable dose of TRU-016 in combination with bendamustine in up to 14 patients with relapsed CLL. The primary endpoint for the Phase Ib portion is the incidence of dose-limiting toxicities.

The Phase II portion of the study will evaluate the safety and efficacy of TRU-016 in combination with bendamustine compared with standalone bendamustine treatment in a total of 100 randomized patients. The primary endpoint for the Phase II portion of the study is an overall response rate as defined by 2008 International Workshop on Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (IWCLL) criteria. Secondary endpoints include complete and partial response rates as defined by the 1996 National Cancer Institute (NCI) criteria, progression-free survival, duration of response, and improvement in quality of life and disease symptoms.

The pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of TRU-016 will be studied in both phases of the study.

“Given the strong TRU-016 preclinical combination data, and the positive clinical results from the single agent dose escalation study, we believe human clinical evaluation of TRU-016 in combination with bendamustine could yield meaningful results,” said Dr. W. James Jackson, chief scientific officer at Emergent BioSolutions. “The dose escalation study in CLL continues to demonstrate that TRU-016 is well tolerated and clinically active and we look forward to Phase I combination data from this study, as well as the planned Phase I combination study for follicular Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.”

Additional information about this Phase Ib/II clinical study can be found on www.clinicaltrials.gov (protocol 16201).

In December 2010, data were presented at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) from a Phase I TRU-016 monotherapy, dose escalation trial involving 57 patients who have had a median of four previous therapies and a median of two prior anti-CD20 therapies. Of the 57 patients, 46% received their last treatment for CLL less than 6 months before entering the study. Genomic data were available for 53 patients, the majority of which (n=35) had high-risk genomic features for CLL, including del(17p) and/or del(11q).

Pharmacokinetic data demonstrated rapid clearance of TRU-016 in the lower dose cohorts. Accumulation was seen in the 3mg/kg TIW and 6mg/kg weekly and higher cohorts. Patients in the 3 mg/kg TIW cohort (n=8) generally maintained serum concentrations of 10 g/ml during treatment. Partial response was observed in seven patients, including two patients with the del(17p) genomic risk factor. The median reduction in absolute lymphocyte count was 73% in those patients with lymphocytosis at baseline. The responses, all partial responses, were observed in patients who had received 1 – 2 prior therapies (n=16) for an overall response rate of 44% (n=7) with a median reduction in lymphocytes of 80% in this population. No responses were observed in patients who had received prior treatment with three or more therapies (n=41), although a median reduction in lymphocytes of 54% was observed in these patients. The median reduction in lymphocytes regardless of baseline lymphocyte count or the number of prior therapies was 60%.

The most commonly reported adverse events were nausea, fatigue, diarrhea, chills, pyrexia, and neutropenia. Serious adverse events occurring in more than one patient were pneumonia, febrile neutropenia, infusion reaction, pyrexia and dyspnea. A maximum tolerated dose has not yet been reached. Additional data from all TRU-016 ASH presentations can be found at: www.truemergent.com.

About CLL

According to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, there are approximately 85,710 people in the U.S. living with CLL, and more than 15,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. Existing treatments for CLL have shown significant efficacy in treating indolent B-cell cancers. However, research suggests that many patients do not achieve an initial response and most eventually relapse, which suggests an acute need for differentiated treatments.

About TRU-016

TRU-016 uses a different mechanism of action than currently marketed CD20-directed therapies. As a result, TRU-016 may provide patients with improved therapeutic options and enhance efficacy when used alone or in combination with chemotherapy and/or other CD20-directed therapeutics.

About Emergent BioSolutions Inc.

Emergent BioSolutions Inc., led by Chairman and CEO Fuad El-Hibri, is a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the development, manufacture and commercialization of vaccines and antibody therapies that assist the body’s immune system to prevent or treat disease. Emergent’s marketed and investigational products target infectious diseases, oncology, and autoimmune disorders. Additional information about the company may be found at www.emergentbiosolutions.com.

Safe Harbor Statement

This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Any statements, other than statements of historical fact, including statements regarding our strategy, future operations, future financial position, future revenues, projected costs, prospects, plans and objectives of management, including any potential future securities offering, estimates of results for 2010, expected revenue growth and net earnings for 2011, and any other statements containing the words “believes”, “expects”, “anticipates”, “plans”, “estimates” and similar expressions, are forward-looking statements. There are a number of important factors that could cause the company’s actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements, including our ability to obtain additional development funding for our product candidates; the rate and degree of market acceptance and clinical utility of our products; the success of our ongoing and planned development programs, preclinical studies and clinical trials; the timing of and our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approvals for our other product candidates; our ability to obtain sales contracts for products; our commercialization, marketing and manufacturing capabilities and strategy; our estimates regarding expenses, future revenue, capital requirements and needs for additional financing; and other factors identified in the company’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2010 and subsequent reports filed with the SEC.

SOURCE: Emergent BioSolutions Inc.

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By Marjorie Censer

Monday, January 3, 2011

Fuad El-Hibri has lived in all sorts of exotic locales, working for Citicorp in Saudi Arabia, consulting for Booz Allen Hamilton in Indonesia and establishing mobile telecommunications businesses in Russia, Venezuela and El Salvador.

But getting started in his current position as chief executive of Rockville-based pharmaceutical company Emergent BioSolutions took him to a far more mundane location. It was at a public auction in Lansing, Mich., in 1998 that El-Hibri offered a $25 million package of cash and commitments to privatize a government facility that was producing an anthrax vaccine.

Since then, he’s built what is now known as Emergent into a local pharmaceutical company that posted earnings of $31.1 million last year.

El-Hibri took an unusual path into the industry, spending much of his career in telecommunications. Born to a Lebanese father and German mother, he split his childhood between Lebanon and Germany before attending Stanford University. El-Hibri quickly moved on to a graduate degree, heading to Yale’s business school.

Though he wanted to start his own business, El-Hibri wanted to gain experience first. After marrying, he and his wife moved to Saudi Arabia so El-Hibri could work for Citicorp. After several years, he moved to consulting giant Booz Allen Hamilton and spent about three years in Jakarta, Indonesia. In one instance, he helped a state-owned petroleum company in Malaysia open up mini-convenience stores alongside its gas stations.

By the late 1980s, El-Hibri was ready to return to the United States, where he opened his own Potomac-based consulting firm. He quickly began working with the Moscow City Telephone Network and helped the company build and implement a mobile telecommunications network that’s still in use today. Partnering with his father — who had worked in telecommunications — El-Hibri eventually sold his interest in the firm and reinvested in a Venezuelan mobile network. He repeated the work in El Salvador.

What made El-Hibri different from other entrepreneurs was his interest in not just making money but also integrating the business into the local economy, said Brian Kim, whose company invested with El-Hibri in both his Venezuelan and El Salvadoran enterprises.

“He had a real sense that the company had [to do] something else — other than creating value for its shareholders,” Kim said. “He took a very local approach.”

Not long after, El-Hibri got involved with a business venture to sell $50 million worth of anthrax vaccine to the Saudi Arabian government, which was worried about its troops. He immediately took an interest in the field, and, after leading a management buyout of a biotechnology firm in Britain, El-Hibri set out to purchase the only facility producing a Food and Drug Administration-licensed anthrax vaccine in the United States.

He headed to Lansing, where the governor had announced the state would privatize its facility, which also had a licensed rabies vaccine, among others. El-Hibri and his partners submitted the winning bid and began renovating the facility, which was relicensed in 2001.

Emergent, which has its corporate headquarters in Rockville, soon added locations, which now extend from Seattle to Munich to Singapore. Best known for its anthrax vaccine, for which it received in July a contract worth up to $107 million, Emergent is also working on a pandemic flu vaccine and a tuberculosis vaccine.

The most recent contract, from the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, is meant to ready the vaccine for large-scale manufacture.

But El-Hibri doesn’t plan to end his career with pharmaceuticals and said he’d next like to work in the environmental field. (In 2001, El-Hibri launched the El-Hibri Charitable Foundation, which focuses on interfaith dialogue and peace education.)

Roberto Smith-Perera, a former minister of transport and communications in Venezuela who partnered with El-Hibri on both the Venezuelan and El Salvadoran cellular businesses, credited El-Hibri’s geographically and culturally diverse background with teaching him how to handle virtually any kind of business.

He’s the kind of person “that specializes in not . . . being a specialist,” said Smith-Perera. “He’s the ultimate project developer.”

Reprinted from the January 3, 2011 edition of  The Washington Post

Fuad El-Hibri, CEO of Emergent BioSolutions Inc., announces that the company will be participating in the following investor conferences during June 2010:

  • The Jefferies & Company 2010 Global Life Sciences Conference
    New York, NY.
    June 8, 2010
    Corporate Overview Presentation
    11:00 AM Eastern
    There will be a full webcast with slides that will include discussion of the Company’s business activities, financial outlook and current news.
  • The Needham & Company 9th Annual Healthcare Conference
    New York, NY.
    June 10, 2010
    Corporate Overview Presentation
    3:20 PM Eastern
    There will be a full webcast with slides that will include discussion of the Company’s business activities, financial outlook and current news.

Both webcasts will be accessible from the Emergent website www.emergentbiosolutions.com under “Investors”.