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Inovio’s (INO) Q1 Loss Wider than Expected, Shares Down

Zacks

Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. INO reported a loss of 36 cents in the first quarter of 2018, wider than both the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 27 cents and the year-ago loss of 31 cents.

Inovio reported revenues of $1.5 million in the first quarter, missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $8 million. Revenues declined in the quarter owing to some accounting adjustments and decrease in grant funding recognized from our Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Ebola grant. Also, in the year-ago quarter, a termination payment rom Roche was recognized as revenue which was missing in the first quarter of 2018.

Shares of Inovio were down 7.8% after the earnings release. Year to date, shares of the company have outperformed the industry. It has gained 5.3% against the industry’s decline of 11.3% during the period.


Research and development expenses inched up 0.4% to $24.6 million, owing to the ongoing studies for its most advanced pipeline candidate VGX-3100 and activities under the company’s collaboration with AstraZeneca’s AZN subsidiary, MedImmune and an increase in employee headcount to support clinical study activities and partnerships.

General and administrative expenses rose 24.4% to $9.7 million, primarily due Chinese taxes and advisory fees incurred in connection with the upfront payment received from ApolloBio in Jan 2018.

In January, Inovio entered into a license and collaboration agreement, providing ApolloBio Corporation with exclusive rights to develop and commercialize VGX-3100 and HPV within Greater China (China, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan).

Pipeline and Other Update

VGX-3100, an HPV immunotherapyis currently being evaluated in a phase III study for the treatment of cervical dysplasia, caused by human papillomavirus (“HPV”). The company is also conducting a phase II study to examine the efficacy of VGX-3100 for HPVrelated vulvar neoplasia.

In mid-2017, the company started an independent phase I trial on DNA immunotherapy, INO-1800, against hepatitis B virus, after Roche RHHBY backed out from its collaboration agreement in July 2016. During the first-quarter conference call, the company announced that it plans to report additional data from this study at upcoming scientific conferences and in a publication in 2018.

The company will be opening sites for phase I/IIa study to evaluate the immunogenicity and preliminary clinical efficacy of INO-5401 and INO-9012 in combination with Roche’s Tecentriq (atezolizumab) in participants with locally advanced unresectable or metastatic/recurrent urothelial carcinoma (UCa).

The company is also opening sites for phase I/II study to evaluate safety, immunogenicity and preliminary efficacy of INO-5401 and INO-9012 in combination with Regeneron’s REGN cemiplimab in participants with newly-diagnosed glioblastoma.

Zacks Rank

Inovio carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

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