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FLORHAM PARK, N.J., Oct. 03, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- PDS Biotechnology Corporation (Nasdaq: PDSB), a clinical-stage immunotherapy company developing a growing pipeline of targeted immunotherapies for cancer and infectious disease, today announced that it has successfully completed an End-of-Phase 2 meeting with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for PDS0101 in combination with Merck’s anti-PD-1 therapy, KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab) for the treatment of unresectable, recurrent/metastatic human papilloma virus (HPV) 16-positive head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC).

“We are very pleased with the guidance received from FDA on key elements of the clinical program that will support the submission of a Biologics License Application (BLA) for our lead asset PDS0101,” said Dr. Frank Bedu-Addo, Chief Executive Officer of PDS Biotech. “The interim safety and efficacy data we presented to the FDA has allowed us to move into a registrational trial ahead of our projected schedule. This, along with the recent capital raise, allows us to efficiently advance our clinical programs.”

Earlier this year, the FDA granted Fast Track designation to the combination of PDS0101 and KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab) for the treatment of HPV16-positive HNSCC. The FDA’s Fast Track designation program is designed to aid in the development and to expedite the review of drug candidate applications that could potentially treat serious or life-threatening conditions. Treatments granted this designation are given the opportunity to have more frequent meetings and interactions with the FDA throughout the entire drug development and review process, with the goal of moving promising new drugs more rapidly through the process.

Dr. Frank Bedu-Addo further commented, “PDS0101 represents a potentially transformative treatment approach for HPV16-positive HNSCC patients. We are committed to providing physicians and patients a possibly more effective and safer treatment option to address this debilitating and deadly disease.”

About PDS Biotechnology 

PDS Biotech is a clinical-stage immunotherapy company developing a growing pipeline of targeted cancer and infectious disease immunotherapies based on our proprietary Versamune® and Infectimune™ T cell-activating technology platforms. We believe our targeted Versamune® based candidates have the potential to overcome the limitations of current immunotherapy by inducing large quantities of high-quality, highly potent polyfunctional tumor specific CD4+ helper and CD8+ killer T cells. To date, our lead Versamune® clinical candidate, PDS0101, has demonstrated the ability to reduce tumors and stabilize disease in combination with approved and investigational therapeutics in patients with a broad range of HPV16-associated cancers in multiple Phase 2 clinical trials. Our Infectimune™ based vaccines have also demonstrated the potential to induce not only robust and durable neutralizing antibody responses, but also powerful T cell responses, including long-lasting memory T cell responses in pre-clinical studies to date. To learn more, please visit www.pdsbiotech.com or follow us on Twitter at @PDSBiotech. 

About PDS0101 

PDS Biotech’s lead candidate, PDS0101, combines the utility of the Versamune® platform with targeted antigens in HPV-expressing cancers. In partnership with Merck & Co., PDS Biotech is evaluating a combination of PDS0101 and KEYTRUDA® in a Phase 2 study in first-line treatment of recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer, and also in second line treatment of recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer in patients who have failed prior checkpoint inhibitor therapy. A Phase 2 clinical study is also being conducted in both second- and third-line treatment of multiple advanced HPV-associated cancers in partnership with the National Cancer Institute (NCI). A third Phase 2 clinical trial in first line treatment of locally advanced cervical cancer is being performed with The University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center.  A final Phase 2 clinical trial of PDS0101 monotherapy in first line treatment of newly diagnosed patients HPV16+ head and neck cancer patients is being conducted at the Mayo Clinic. 

KEYTRUDA® is a registered trademark of Merck Sharp and Dohme LLC, a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA. 

About VERSATILE-002 

VERSATILE-002 is a single-arm Phase 2 trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of PDS0101, an HPV16-targeted investigational T cell-activating immunotherapy that leverages PDS Biotech’s proprietary Versamune® technology, in combination with Merck’s anti-PD-1 therapy, KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab). The combination is being evaluated in CPI-naïve and CPI-refractory patients with recurrent/metastatic HPV16-positive head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and was granted Fast Track designation by the Food and Drug Administration in June 2022.   

In June 2022, preliminary efficacy and safety data were presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting for CPI-naïve patients (PR link). Preliminary data from the first 19 patients demonstrated that 77% of the patients with available imaging (17 of 19) had either disease stabilization or tumor shrinkage. Additionally, the overall survival rate of these patients at 9-months was 87%.  

Forward Looking Statements 

This communication contains forward-looking statements (including within the meaning of Section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and Section 27A of the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended) concerning PDS Biotechnology Corporation (the “Company”) and other matters. These statements may discuss goals, intentions and expectations as to future plans, trends, events, results of operations or financial condition, or otherwise, based on current beliefs of the Company’s management, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to, management. Forward-looking statements generally include statements that are predictive in nature and depend upon or refer to future events or conditions, and include words such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “would,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “plan,” “likely,” “believe,” “estimate,” “project,” “intend,” “forecast,” “guidance”, “outlook” and other similar expressions among others. Forward-looking statements are based on current beliefs and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties and are not guarantees of future performance. Actual results could differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement as a result of various factors, including, without limitation: the Company’s ability to protect its intellectual property rights; the Company’s anticipated capital requirements, including the Company’s anticipated cash runway and the Company’s current expectations regarding its plans for future equity financings; the Company’s dependence on additional financing to fund its operations and complete the development and commercialization of its product candidates, and the risks that raising such additional capital may restrict the Company’s operations or require the Company to relinquish rights to the Company’s technologies or product candidates; the Company’s limited operating history in the Company’s current line of business, which makes it difficult to evaluate the Company’s prospects, the Company’s business plan or the likelihood of the Company’s successful implementation of such business plan; the timing for the Company or its partners to initiate the planned clinical trials for PDS0101, PDS0203 and other Versamune® and Infectimune™based product candidates; the future success of such trials; the successful implementation of the Company’s research and development programs and collaborations, including any collaboration studies concerning PDS0101, PDS0203 and other Versamune® and Infectimune™based product candidates and the Company’s interpretation of the results and findings of such programs and collaborations and whether such results are sufficient to support the future success of the Company’s product candidates; the success, timing and cost of the Company’s ongoing clinical trials and anticipated clinical trials for the Company’s current product candidates, including statements regarding the timing of initiation, pace of enrollment and completion of the trials (including the Company’s ability to fully fund its disclosed clinical trials, which assumes no material changes to our currently projected expenses), futility analyses, presentations at conferences and data reported in an abstract, and receipt of interim or preliminary results (including, without limitation, any preclinical results or data), which are not necessarily indicative of the final results of the Company’s ongoing clinical trials; any Company statements about its understanding of product candidates mechanisms of action and interpretation of preclinical and early clinical results from its clinical development programs and any collaboration studies; and other factors, including legislative, regulatory, political and economic developments not within the Company’s control, including unforeseen circumstances or other disruptions to normal business operations arising from or related to COVID-19. The foregoing review of important factors that could cause actual events to differ from expectations should not be construed as exhaustive and should be read in conjunction with statements that are included herein and elsewhere, including the risk factors included in the Company’s annual and periodic reports filed with the SEC. The forward-looking statements are made only as of the date of this press release and, except as required by applicable law, the Company undertakes no obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statement, or to make any other forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. 

Versamune® is a registered trademark and Infectimune™ is a trademark of PDS Biotechnology. 

Investor Contacts: 
Deanne Randolph 
PDS Biotech 
Phone: +1 (908) 517-3613 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Rich Cockrell 
CG Capital 
Phone: +1 (404) 736-3838 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
  
Media Contacts: 
Dave Schemelia 
Tiberend Strategic Advisors 
Phone: +1 (609) 468-9325 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Bill Borden 
Tiberend Strategic Advisors 
Phone: +1 (732) 910-1620 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


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