LEAWOOD, Kan., Dec. 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Aratana Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: PETX), a pet therapeutics company focused on the licensing, development and commercialization of innovative therapeutics for dogs and cats, today announced the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Center for Veterinary Biologics granted Aratana conditional licensure for Canine Osteosarcoma Vaccine, Live Listeria Vector (AT-014) for the treatment of dogs diagnosed with osteosarcoma, one year of age or older.
"Osteosarcoma is the most common primary bone tumor in dogs and, since there haven't been advances to raise the standard of care in nearly 20 years, dogs often face a poor prognosis," states Ernst Heinen, DVM, PhD, Chief Development Officer of Aratana Therapeutics. "We are hopeful that our Canine Osteosarcoma Vaccine will be a new tool for veterinary oncologists to prolong survival in dogs with osteosarcoma."
Canine Osteosarcoma Vaccine is a novel immunotherapy developed by Aratana using a listeria based antigen delivery system licensed from Advaxis, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADXS). Canine Osteosarcoma Vaccine is a lyophilized formulation of a modified live, attenuated strain of listeria that activates cytotoxic T-cells. Because the therapeutic expresses a tumor-associated antigen, it directs the T-cells to fight cancer cells, even after the bacteria are cleared. Thus, the therapeutic capitalizes on the dog's immune system and its ability to attack bacterial infections, redirecting it to fight cancer cells.
Data from a clinical study in 18 client-owned dogs with osteosarcoma suggests that the immunotherapy may be able to delay or prevent metastatic disease and may prolong overall survival in dogs with osteosarcoma. The single-arm study evaluated dogs that had primary tumor removal and four doses of carboplatin chemotherapy, followed by the therapeutic vaccine every three weeks for three doses. Median survival time was 956 days compared to 423 days for a historical control group (p<0.05). A separate field safety study submitted to USDA for conditional licensure demonstrated that the most common adverse events included lethargy, diarrhea and fever. Four serious adverse events were observed.
As required by USDA to progress from conditional licensure to full licensure, Aratana plans to conduct an extended field study in a clinical setting and anticipates initiating the study in early 2018. Initially, the therapeutic will be made available for purchase at approximately two dozen veterinary oncology practice groups across the United States who participate in the study.
About Aratana Therapeutics Aratana Therapeutics is a pet therapeutics company focused on licensing, developing and commercializing innovative therapeutics for dogs and cats. Aratana believes that it can leverage the investment in the human biopharmaceutical industry to bring therapeutics to pets in a capital and time efficient manner. The Company's pipeline includes therapeutic candidates targeting pain, inappetence, cancer, viral diseases, allergy and other serious medical conditions. Aratana believes the development and commercialization of these therapeutics will permit veterinarians and pet owners to manage pets' medical needs safely and effectively, resulting in longer and improved quality of life for pets. For more information, please visit www.aratana.com.
Forward-Looking Statements Disclaimer This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements contained in this press release that do not relate to matters of historical fact should be considered forward-looking statements, including without limitation statements with respect to anticipated financial performance, our ability to bring innovative therapeutics to the market; steps necessary for and timing of regulatory submissions and approvals of therapeutic candidates; study, development and commercialization of therapeutics or therapeutic candidates, including our planned field safety study of AT-014 as required by USDA for full licensure; timing of anticipated study initiation and enrollment period; increased market recognition of and demand for our therapeutics; our hope that AT-014 will be a new tool for veterinary oncologists to prolong survival in dogs with osteosarcoma; and statements regarding the Company's efforts, plans and opportunities, including, without limitation, advancing our therapeutic candidates and offering innovative therapeutics that help manage pet's medical needs safely and effectively and that result in longer and improved quality of life for pets.
These forward-looking statements are based on management's current expectations. These statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, the following: our history of operating losses and our expectation that we will continue to incur losses for the foreseeable future; failure to obtain sufficient capital to fund our operations; risks relating to the impairment of intangible assets; risks relating to the discontinuation of BLONTRESS and TACTRESS; risks pertaining to stockholder class action lawsuits; unstable market and economic conditions; restrictions on our financial flexibility due to the terms of our credit facility; our substantial dependence upon the commercial success of our therapeutics; development of our biologic therapeutic candidates is dependent upon relatively novel technologies and uncertain regulatory pathways, and biologics may not be commercially viable; denial or delay of regulatory approval for our existing or future therapeutic candidates; failure of our therapeutic candidates that receive regulatory approval to achieve market acceptance or achieve commercial success; product liability lawsuits that could cause us to incur substantial liabilities and limit commercialization of current and future therapeutics; failure to realize anticipated benefits of our acquisitions and difficulties associated with integrating the acquired businesses; development of pet therapeutics is a lengthy and expensive process with an uncertain outcome; competition in the pet therapeutics market, including from generic alternatives to our therapeutic candidates, and failure to compete effectively; failure to identify, license or acquire, develop and commercialize additional therapeutic candidates; failure to attract and retain senior management and key scientific personnel; our reliance on third-party manufacturers, suppliers and partners; regulatory restrictions on the marketing of our approved therapeutics and therapeutic candidates; our small commercial sales organization, and any failure to create a sales force or collaborate with third-parties to commercialize our approved therapeutics and therapeutic candidates; difficulties in managing the growth of our company; significant costs of being a public company; risks related to the restatement of our financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2013, and the identification of a material weakness in our internal control over financial reporting; changes in distribution channels for pet therapeutics; consolidation of our veterinarian customers; limitations on our ability to use our net operating loss carryforwards; impacts of generic products; safety or efficacy concerns with respect to our therapeutic candidates; effects of system failures or security breaches; delay or termination of the development of grapiprant therapeutic candidates and commercialization of grapiprant products that may arise from termination of or failure to perform under the collaboration agreement and/or the co-promotion agreement with Elanco; failure to obtain ownership of issued patents covering our therapeutic candidates or failure to prosecute or enforce licensed patents; failure to comply with our obligations under our license agreements; effects of patent or other intellectual property lawsuits; failure to protect our intellectual property; changing patent laws and regulations; non-compliance with any legal or regulatory requirements; litigation resulting from the misuse of our confidential information; the uncertainty of the regulatory approval process and the costs associated with government regulation of our therapeutic candidates; failure to obtain regulatory approvals in foreign jurisdictions; effects of legislative or regulatory reform with respect to pet therapeutics; the volatility of the price of our common stock; our status as an emerging growth company, which could make our common stock less attractive to investors; dilution of our common stock as a result of future financings; the influence of certain significant stockholders over our business; and provisions in our charter documents and under Delaware law could delay or prevent a change in control. These and other important factors discussed under the caption "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, on March 14, 2017, along with our other reports filed with the SEC could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements made in this press release. Any such forward-looking statements represent management's estimates as of the date of this press release. While we may elect to update such forward-looking statements at some point in the future, we disclaim any obligation to do so, even if subsequent events cause our views to change, except as required under applicable law. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing our views as of any date subsequent to the date of this press release.