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UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, D.C. 20549

FORM 10-K

(Mark One)

 

ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2022

or

TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the transition period from to

Commission File No. 001-38959

BridgeBio Pharma, Inc.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

Delaware
State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization

84-1850815
(I.R.S. Employer
Identification No.)

3160 Porter Drive, Suite 250, Palo Alto, CA
(Address of principal executive offices)

94304
(Zip Code)

 

Registrant’s telephone number, including area code: (650) 391-9740

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:

 

Title of each class

 

Trading

Symbol(s)

 

Name of each exchange on which registered

Common Stock, par value $0.001 per share

 

BBIO

 

The Nasdaq Global Select Market

 

Securities registered pursuant to section 12(g) of the Act: NONE

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well‑known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes ☒ No ☐

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes ☐ No

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes ☒ No ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S‑T (§ 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). Yes ☒ No ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer

 

Accelerated filer

Non-accelerated filer

 

Smaller reporting company

 

 

 

Emerging growth company

 

If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 726(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report.

If securities are registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act, indicate by check mark whether the financial statements of the registrant included in the filing reflect the correction of an error to previously issued financial statements. ☐

Indicate by check mark whether any of those error corrections are restatements that required a recovery analysis of incentive-based compensation received by any of the registrant’s executive officers during the relevant recovery period pursuant to §240.10D-1(b). ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b‑2 of the Act). Yes ☐ No

The aggregate market value of the voting and non‑voting common equity held by non‑affiliates of the registrant based upon the closing price of the registrant’s Common Stock on The Nasdaq Global Select Market on June 30, 2022 was approximately $976.8 million. Shares of the registrant’s Common Stock held by each executive officer and director and by each other person who may be deemed an affiliate of the Registrant have been excluded from this computation. The determination of affiliate status for this purpose is not necessarily a conclusive determination for other purposes.

On February 16, 2023, there were 151,373,044 shares of the registrant’s Common Stock issued and outstanding.

DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

Specified portions of the registrant’s definitive Proxy Statement to be issued in conjunction with the registrant’s 2023 Annual Meeting of Stockholders, which is expected to be filed not later than 120 days after the registrant’s fiscal year ended December 31, 2022, are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Annual Report. Except as expressly incorporated by reference, the registrant’s Proxy Statement shall not be deemed to be a part of this Annual Report on Form 10‑K.

 

 


 

BRIDGEBIO PHARMA, INC.

2022 Form 10‑K Annual Report

Table of Contents

 

 

 

Page

 

PART I

 

Item 1.

Business

1

Item 1A.

Risk Factors

57

Item 1B.

Unresolved Staff Comments

129

Item 2.

Properties

129

Item 3.

Legal Proceedings

129

Item 4.

Mine Safety Disclosures

129

 

PART II

 

Item 5.

Market for the Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

130

Item 6.

[Reserved]

131

Item 7.

Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

132

Item 7A.

Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

151

Item 8.

Financial Statements and Supplementary Data

153

Item 9.

Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure

216

Item 9A.

Controls and Procedures

216

Item 9B.

Other Information

218

Item 9C.

Disclosure Regarding Foreign Jurisdictions that Prevent Inspections

218

 

PART III

 

Item 10.

Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance

219

Item 11.

Executive Compensation

219

Item 12.

Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters

219

Item 13.

Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence

219

Item 14.

Principal Accountant Fees and Services

219

 

PART IV

 

Item 15.

Exhibits and Financial Statement Schedules

220

Item 16.

Form 10‑K Summary

221

Exhibits

221

Signatures

226

 

In this Annual Report on Form 10-K, unless otherwise stated or as the context requires, references to “BridgeBio,” “the Company,” “we,” “us,” “our” or similar references refer to BridgeBio Pharma, Inc., together with its consolidated subsidiaries.

 

i


 

Special Note Regarding Forward‑Looking Statements

This Annual Report on Form 10‑K contains forward‑looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Such forward‑looking statements involve substantial risks, uncertainties and assumptions. All statements in this Annual Report on Form 10‑K, other than statements of historical fact, including, without limitation, statements regarding our strategy, future operations, future operating expenses, future financial position, future revenue, projected costs, prospects, plans, intentions, expectations, goals and objectives may be forward‑looking statements. The words “anticipates,” “believes,” “could,” “designed,” “estimates,” “expects,” “goal,” “intends,” “may,” “objective,” “plans,” “projects,” “pursuing,” “will,” “would” and similar expressions (including the negatives thereof) are intended to identify forward‑looking statements, although not all forward‑looking statements contain these identifying words. The forward-looking statements in this report include, but are not limited to, statements about:

the success, cost and timing of our clinical development of our product candidates, including the progress of, and results from, our ongoing Phase 3 clinical trial of acoramidis, our ongoing Phase 2 and planned Phase 3 clinical trials of low-dose infigratinib, our ongoing Phase 2 and planned Phase 3 clinical trials of BBP-418, our ongoing Phase 1/2 clinical trial of BBP-631 and our ongoing Phase 2b and Phase 3 clinical trials of encaleret, as well as the potential indications for each;
our ability to continue planned preclinical and clinical development of our respective development programs, and the timing, cost and success of any such continued preclinical and clinical development and planned regulatory submissions, including our KRAS inhibitor portfolio;
our ability to initiate, recruit and enroll patients in and conduct our clinical trials at the pace that we project;
the timing of our submissions to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, and any review or comments on data that we will need to generate to file our Investigational New Drug applications, or INDs, including pending or new clinical hold notices;
our plans to implement certain development strategies, including our ability to attract and retain potential collaborators with development, regulatory and commercialization expertise;
our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approval of our product candidates in any of the indications for which we plan to develop them, and any related restrictions, limitations or warnings in the label of any of our product candidates, if approved;
our ability to compete with companies currently marketing approved treatments or engaged in the development of treatments that may become available for any of the indications that our product candidates are designed to target;
our reliance on third parties to conduct our clinical trials and to manufacture drug substance for use in our clinical trials;
our ability to contract with and the performance of our and our collaborators’ third-party suppliers and manufacturers;
the pricing and reimbursement of our product candidates, if approved;
the size and growth potential of the markets for our product candidates, including acoramidis, low-dose infigratinib, BBP-418, BBP-631, encaleret, any KRAS inhibitor candidates, and any of our current product candidates or other product candidates we may identify and pursue, and our ability to serve and our acceptance by those markets;
our ability to identify and advance through clinical development any additional product candidates, including in our KRAS inhibitor portfolio for the treatment of KRAS-driven cancers;
the commercialization of our current product candidates, if approved, and any other product candidates we may identify and pursue, if approved, including our ability to successfully build a specialty sales force and commercial infrastructure to market our current product candidates and any other product candidates we may identify and pursue;

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the implementation and effects of the restructuring initiative that we commenced in January 2022 and any future restructuring plans that we may pursue;
the impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and macroeconomic factors that could impact our business, such as the effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on the global economy and supply chain and inflationary pressures;
our ability to retain and recruit key scientific or management personnel;
the success of competing therapies that are or may become available;
our ability to obtain and maintain adequate intellectual property rights for our product candidates and our ability to operate our business without infringing on the intellectual property rights of others;
our expectations regarding government and third-party payor coverage and reimbursement;
our estimates of our expenses, ongoing losses, capital requirements and our use of cash resources, and our needs for or ability to pay for debt interests and obtain additional financing to complete the clinical trials of any of our product candidates;
the impact of laws and regulations in the United States and foreign countries;
our financial performance; and
developments and projections relating to our competitors or our industry.

We may not actually achieve the plans, intentions, expectations or objectives disclosed in our forward‑looking statements and the assumptions underlying our forward‑looking statements may prove incorrect. Furthermore, if our forward‑looking statements prove to be inaccurate, the inaccuracy may be material. Therefore, you should not place undue reliance on our forward‑looking statements, and you should not regard these statements as a representation or warranty by us or any other person that we will achieve our objectives and plans in any specified time frame, or at all. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions, expectations and objectives disclosed in the forward‑looking statements that we make. Important factors that we believe could cause actual results or events to differ materially from our forward‑looking statements include, but are not limited to, those listed under “Risk Factors” in Item 1A of Part I, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in Item 7 of Part II and elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10‑K. Our forward‑looking statements in this Annual Report on Form 10‑K are based on current expectations as of the date hereof and we do not assume any obligation to update any forward‑looking statements on account of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

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RISK FACTOR SUMMARY

 

Below is a summary of the principal factors that make an investment in our common stock speculative or risky. This summary does not address all of the risks that we face. Additional discussion of the risks summarized in this risk factor summary, and other risks that we face, can be found below under the heading “Risk Factors” and should be carefully considered, together with other information in this Annual Report on Form 10-K and our other filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC, before making investment decisions regarding our common stock.

Certain of our product candidates are in preclinical or clinical development, which is a lengthy and expensive process with uncertain outcomes and the potential for substantial delays. We may not receive regulatory approval to market any of these product candidates in any jurisdictions, which would materially and adversely affect our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition.
Our clinical trials may fail to demonstrate substantial evidence of the safety and efficacy of product candidates that we may identify and pursue for their intended uses, which would prevent, delay or limit the scope of regulatory approval and commercialization.
Drug development is a highly uncertain undertaking and involves a substantial degree of risk. We have incurred significant losses since our inception and anticipate that we will continue to incur significant losses for the foreseeable future. We have not generated significant product revenue since inception, which, together with our limited operating history, may make it difficult for you to assess our future viability.
We may encounter substantial delays in clinical trials for a variety of reasons, including difficulties in patient enrollment, and we may not be able to conduct or complete clinical trials on the expected timelines, if at all.
Results of earlier studies or clinical trials may not be predictive of future clinical trial results, and initial studies or clinical trials may not establish an adequate safety or efficacy profile for our product candidates to justify proceeding to advanced clinical trials or an application for regulatory approval.
Use of our product candidates could be associated with side effects, adverse events or other properties or safety risks, which could delay or halt their clinical development, prevent their regulatory approval, cause us to abandon a product candidate, limit their commercial potential, if approved, or result in other significant negative consequences to our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition.
Certain of our product candidates are under development for the treatment of patient populations with significant comorbidities that may result in deaths or serious adverse or unacceptable side effects and require us to abandon or limit our clinical development activities.
Interim, “top-line,” and preliminary data from our clinical trials that we announce or publish from time to time may not be predictive of future clinical trial results and may change as more data become available, as additional analyses are conducted, or as audit and verification procedures are performed on such preliminary data.
Our conduct of clinical trials for product candidates and our plans to commercialize certain product candidates outside the United States could expose us to additional risks and uncertainties, including with respect to our ability to obtain regulatory approvals or comply with applicable laws and regulations outside the United States.
Even though we may apply for orphan drug designation for our product candidates, we may not be able to obtain orphan drug marketing exclusivity.
Even if we obtain regulatory approval for any of our current product candidates, we will be subject to ongoing regulatory obligations and continued regulatory review, which may result in significant expense to maintain compliance with such obligations or as a result of any penalties to which we may become subject for any failure to comply with such obligations.
Certain of our product candidates, including our protein therapeutic and gene therapy product candidates, are novel, complex and difficult to manufacture. We could experience manufacturing problems that delay our development or commercialization activities or otherwise harm our business.

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Certain of our product candidates are based on a novel adeno-associated virus, or AAV, gene therapy technology with which there is limited clinical or regulatory experience to date, which makes it difficult to predict the time and cost of product candidate development and subsequently obtaining regulatory approval.
We face significant competition from other biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and our operating results will suffer if we fail to compete effectively.
Our future success depends on our ability to retain key employees, directors, consultants and advisors and to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel.
We will need substantial additional financing to develop and, if approved, commercialize our product candidates and implement our operating plans. If we fail to obtain additional financing, when needed on acceptable terms, or at all, we may be forced to delay, reduce or terminate our research and development programs, future commercialization efforts or other operations.
We rely and will continue to rely on third parties to conduct our clinical trials and some aspects of our research and preclinical testing, and for the manufacture of our product candidates for preclinical studies and clinical trials and, if approved, any products that we determine to commercialize. If these third parties do not successfully carry out their contractual duties or meet expected deadlines, we may not be able to obtain regulatory approval of or commercialize our product candidates.
Our rights to develop and commercialize our product candidates are subject in part to the terms and conditions of licenses granted to us by others, and the patent protection, prosecution and enforcement for some of our product candidates may be dependent on our licensors, the loss of which could result in the loss of intellectual property and other protection, and would harm our business.
If we are unable to obtain and maintain sufficient intellectual property protection for our product candidates, including acoramidis, low-dose infigratinib, BBP-418, BBP-631 encaleret, and our KRAS inhibitor portfolio, or if the scope of the intellectual property protection obtained is not sufficiently broad, our competitors could develop and commercialize products or product candidates similar or identical to ours, and our ability to successfully commercialize our potential product candidates may be impaired.
If any of our current product candidates receive marketing approval, they may fail to achieve the degree of market acceptance by physicians, patients, healthcare payors, and others in the medical community necessary for commercial success.
Because we have multiple programs and product candidates in our development pipeline and are pursuing a variety of target indications and treatment modalities, we may expend our limited resources to pursue a particular product candidate and fail to capitalize on development opportunities or product candidates that may be more profitable or for which there is a greater likelihood of success.
We have incurred a significant amount of debt and may in the future incur additional indebtedness. Servicing our debt requires a significant amount of cash, and we may not have sufficient cash flow from our business to pay our substantial debt.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, including newly discovered variants, could adversely impact our business, including our clinical trials and preclinical studies.
Unfavorable global economic conditions, including market volatility, inflationary pressures, acts of war and civil and political unrest, could have a negative impact on our stock price, increase our operating expenses and impair our ability to raise additional capital on acceptable terms, or at all.


 

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PART I

ITEM 1. BUSINESS

Overview

BridgeBio Pharma, Inc. is a commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company founded to discover, create, test and deliver transformative medicines to treat patients who suffer from genetic diseases and cancers with clear genetic drivers. BridgeBio’s pipeline of development programs ranges from early science to advanced clinical trials. BridgeBio was founded in 2015 and its team of experienced drug discoverers, developers and innovators are committed to applying advances in genetic medicine to help patients as quickly as possible. Since inception, BridgeBio has created 15 Investigational New Drug applications, or INDs, and had two products approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. We work across over 20 disease states at various stages of development. Several of our programs target indications that we believe present the potential for our product candidates, if approved, to target portions of market opportunities of at least $1.0 billion in annual sales.

We focus on genetic diseases because they exist at the intersection of high unmet patient need and tractable biology. Our approach is to translate research pioneered at academic laboratories and leading medical institutions into products that we hope will ultimately reach patients. We are able to realize this opportunity through a confluence of scientific advances, including: (i) identification of the genetic underpinnings of disease as more cost-efficient genome and exome sequencing becomes available; (ii) progress in molecular biology; and (iii) the development and maturation of longitudinal data and retrospective studies that enable the linkage of genes to diseases. We believe that this early-stage innovation represents one of the greatest practical sources for new drug creation.

We believe we have developed a world-class product platform that supports the continued growth of our Company and the advancement of our pipeline.

Our Pipeline

Our pipeline could deliver up to eight potential Phase 3 readouts over the next five years, of which we expect acoramidis, low-dose infigraitinib, encaleret, BBP-418 and BBP-631 to be in markets of one billion dollars or more. The following table summarizes our development programs, their estimated patient populations, their therapeutic modalities and their development status:

 

https://cdn.kscope.io/fcd44fd10142e257387e2b3b083319f2-img187071172_0.jpg 

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Of our investigational programs, we believe the following have the greatest potential to drive significant near-term value for our Company due to a combination of factors, including their stage of development, potential availability of expedited development pathways, degree of unmet medical need and potential market size in the applicable target indication:

Acoramidis (also known as AG10), a small molecule stabilizer of transthyretin, or TTR, that is in an ongoing Phase 3 clinical trial for the treatment of TTR amyloid cardiomyopathy, or ATTR-CM.
Low-dose infigratinib, a small molecule selective FGFR1-3 inhibitor that is in an ongoing Phase 2 clinical trial for the treatment of children with achondroplasia.
Encaleret, a small molecule antagonist of the calcium sensing receptor, or CaSR, that is in ongoing Phase 2b and Phase 3 pivotal clinical trials for Autosomal Dominant Hypocalcemia Type 1, or ADH1.
BBP-418, an orally administered substrate replacement product candidate that has delivered positive interim data from an ongoing Phase 2 clinical trial for the treatment of Limb-Girdle Muscular Dystrophy type 2I, or LGMD2I, with a Phase 3 clinical trial planned to start in 2023.
BBP-631, an AAV5 gene transfer product candidate that is in an ongoing Phase 1/2 clinical trial for the treatment of congenital adrenal hyperplasia, or CAH, driven by 21-hydroxylase deficiency, or 21OHD.
KRAS inhibitor portfolio for the treatment of KRAS-driven cancers, including:
BBO-8520, a next-generation KRAS G12C dual GTP/GDP inhibitor, which has shown greater potency in preclinical KRAS models than first-generation KRAS G12C GDP-only inhibitors and which we plan to enter into the clinic in 2023;
a novel PI3Kα:RAS breaker molecule, which we intend to move into IND-enabling studies in 2023; and
a preclinical pan-KRAS inhibitor program in lead optimization.

Acoramidis (Eidos): TTR Amyloidosis

Summary

We are developing acoramidis, also known as AG10, an oral small molecule TTR stabilizer, for the treatment of TTR amyloidosis, or ATTR. A Phase 3 clinical trial in 632 patients with ATTR cardiomyopathy, or ATTR-CM, known as the ATTRibute-CM study, is currently ongoing. We anticipate reporting top-line 30-month outcomes data from Part B of the ATTRibute-CM study in mid-2023. We continue to believe acoramidis has the potential to demonstrate benefit on the 30-month hierarchical composite primary endpoint, which includes all-cause mortality and cardiovascular-related hospitalizations.

On December 27, 2021, we reported that ATTRibute-CM did not meet its Part A primary endpoint of change for baseline in six-minute walk distance at Month 12. We observed improvements in acoramidis-treated participants relative to placebo-treated participants at Month 12 on key secondary and exploratory endpoints including on N-terminal pro BNP, or NT-proBNP, a cardiac biomarker, and serum TTR concentration, a measure of TTR stabilization and the Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire Overall Score, or KCCQ-OS, a quality-of-life measurement.

Market Opportunity

We believe that the total market for ATTR therapeutic interventions will continue to grow for the foreseeable future as the population of diagnosed patients increases as a result of heightened disease awareness and the increased adoption of non-invasive diagnostic techniques. The number of estimated diagnosed ATTR-CM patients in the United States has grown from fewer than 5,000 in 2019 to more than 30,000 in 2021. As such, if acoramidis is approved, we believe that there could be a significant population of newly diagnosed patients who have not previously been treated with a disease-modifying therapy and could be treated with acoramidis. If approved, we believe that acoramidis could have meaningful commercial potential. Further, we believe that acoramidis, if approved, has the potential to be a best-in-class stabilizer for the treatment of ATTR.

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Disease Overview

ATTR is a disease caused by destabilization of TTR tetramers resulting in progressive amyloid deposition. TTR is a protein that occurs naturally in the form of a tetramer, consisting of four identical subunits, or monomers, and performs multiple physiologic roles, including the transport of essential hormones and vitamins. In ATTR, TTR tetramers become destabilized due to a mutation in the TTR gene or as part of the natural aging process. Destabilized TTR dissociates into monomers, self-aggregates, and assembles into fibrils that are deposited, predominantly in the heart and nervous system, driving disease pathophysiology.

Cardiomyopathic ATTR is commonly categorized by its genotypic cause with wild-type ATTR cardiomyopathy, or ATTRwt-CM, which results from an age-related process, and variant ATTR cardiomyopathy, or ATTRv-CM. Both forms of the disease are progressive and fatal. ATTRwt-CM and ATTRv-CM patients generally present with symptoms later in life (older than 50) and have median life expectancies of two to five years from diagnosis if untreated. Progression of both forms of the disease can cause significant disability, impact productivity and quality of life, and create a significant economic burden due to the costs associated with patient need for supportive care. As the disease progresses, ATTRwt-CM and ATTRv-CM patients may experience recurrent hospitalizations and repeated interventions.

The worldwide estimated prevalence of ATTRwt-CM and ATTRv-CM is greater than 400,000 and 40,000, respectively. We believe that cardiomyopathic ATTR is significantly underdiagnosed today. For example, recent literature has suggested that between 10% to 13% of patients diagnosed with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction may have undiagnosed ATTR-CM. The heart failure with preserved ejection fraction segment represents approximately half of the 6.0 million to 7.0 million estimated people with heart failure in the United States. With the increasing availability of disease-modifying therapeutics, disease awareness is heightened.

We believe the population of diagnosed ATTR-CM patients is also growing rapidly due to the shift to an accurate and reliable non-invasive diagnostic imaging technique. Historically, a heart biopsy was required to make a diagnosis of ATTR-CM. Recently, however, it has been shown that scintigraphy with technetium-labelled radiotracers paired with single-photon emission computerized tomography, or SPECT, CT imaging is a highly accurate, non-invasive, and cost-effective method for ATTR-CM diagnosis. We believe that both increased disease awareness and availability of this non-invasive diagnostic imaging technique are allowing for earlier diagnosis of ATTR-CM patients and the identification of previously misdiagnosed patients.

Design Criteria

Acoramidis is a clinical-stage, orally administered, small molecule TTR stabilizer being developed to treat ATTR at its source. We designed acoramidis to meet two primary criteria – to preserve circulating native TTR and to reduce amyloid deposition by minimizing toxic TTR monomer formation.

TTR is a protein which has been highly conserved throughout evolution, and which is abundant in the plasma with relatively rapid turnover requiring sustained metabolic energy expenditure. Thus, we seek to achieve maximal stabilization of the TTR tetramer rather than elimination.

Acoramidis has been shown in preclinical studies and clinical trials to prevent the dissociation of tetrameric TTR into monomers, and in preclinical studies, to reduce the rate of amyloid fibril formation. In addition, it has been shown to lead to increased circulating levels of tetrameric TTR. Acoramidis has been designed to bind TTR in a way that causes TTR’s conformational structure to mimic that of the well-characterized T119M variant, a naturally occurring rescue mutation that super stabilizes the TTR tetramer. The T119M variant has been observed to prevent the dissociation of TTR tetramers into monomers; T119M tetramers dissociate 40-fold more slowly than wild-type tetramers in biochemical assays. Known as a trans-allelic trans-suppressor, individuals who coinherit the T119M rescue mutation along with a TTR-destabilizing mutation are protected against the development of ATTR.

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In third-party clinical trials of tafamidis, another orally administered, small molecule TTR stabilizer, interventional approaches that increased TTR stabilization led to improved outcomes in this disease, as measured by all-cause mortality and cardiovascular-related hospitalizations, and were correlated with increases in serum TTR. Further, based on genetic data, there is a correlation between the level of TTR stabilization, serum TTR levels and disease severity. As a result, we believe that serum TTR is a predictive biomarker for disease prognosis and that there may be a relationship between more effective TTR stabilization, serum TTR levels and improved clinical outcomes. Based on results from comparative nonclinical studies, we believe that acoramidis has the potential to stabilize TTR to a greater extent than other TTR stabilizers.

Clinical Data

Phase 2 Data

In November 2018, we announced Phase 2 data for acoramidis in symptomatic patients with ATTR-CM. The randomized, placebo-controlled, dose-ranging clinical trial included 49 patients with symptomatic ATTR-CM, of which 14 had ATTR-CM. Eligible patients were randomized in a 1:1:1 ratio to placebo or 400 milligrams or mg, or 800 mg of acoramidis twice daily over 28 days. Overall, acoramidis was well-tolerated in symptomatic ATTR-CM subjects with no safety signals of potential clinical concern attributed to study drug. Acoramidis significantly raised serum TTR concentrations (p < 0.0001) by 50% and 36% in subjects administered 800 mg twice daily and 400 twice daily, respectively, at day 28. Normalized serum TTR levels were observed in all actively treated subjects at day 28.

In November 2019, we announced data from our Phase 2 open-label extension, or OLE, suggesting long-term tolerability of acoramidis and stabilization of ATTR-CM disease measures. Acoramidis was well-tolerated in the OLE and no safety signals of potential clinical concern were attributed to study drug. The rate of all-cause mortality (including either death or cardiac transplantation, 8.5%) and cardiovascular-related hospitalizations (proportion experiencing at least one event, 25.5%) observed in an exploratory analysis of OLE participants following a median of 15 months since Phase 2 initiation were lower than those observed at 15 months in placebo-treated patients in the ATTR-ACT study (all-cause mortality including death or cardiac transplantation, 15.3%; cardiovascular-related hospitalizations, 41.8%).

In April 2022, we presented updated results from our Phase 2 OLE, demonstrating continued long-term tolerability of acoramidis and stabilization of ATTR-CM disease measures. With a median of 38 months of continuous treatment, acoramidis was generally well-tolerated in the OLE and no safety signals of potential clinical concern were attributed to study drug.

 

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Phase 3 Data

In February 2019, we initiated ATTRibute-CM, a global Phase 3 randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial of acoramidis in ATTR-CM. ATTRibute-CM enrolled 632 subjects with symptomatic ATTR-CM, associated with either wild-type or variant TTR and New York Heart Association, or NYHA, Class I-III symptoms. Subjects were randomized 2:1 between treatment (acoramidis 800 mg) and placebo twice daily in a two-part trial. In Part A, change in 6MWD at 12 months was compared between treatment and placebo groups as a potential registrational endpoint. In Part B, the hierarchical composite primary endpoint including all-cause mortality and cardiovascular hospitalizations will be compared between treatment and control groups at 30 months. Secondary endpoints include quality of life as assessed by the KCCQ-OS, safety parameters, serum TTR levels, a measure of TTR stabilization, and NT-proBNP levels, a cardiac biomarker. In Part B, concomitant use of tafamidis is allowed. A schematic of the trial is shown below:

 

https://cdn.kscope.io/fcd44fd10142e257387e2b3b083319f2-img187071172_1.jpg 

 

On December 27, 2021, we reported topline data from Part A of the ATTRibute-CM trial which did not meet its primary endpoint of change from baseline in 6MWD (p = 0.76). Mean observed 6MWD decline for the acoramidis and placebo arms were 9 meters and 7 meters, respectively. Decline observed in both arms of ATTRibute-CM was similar to expected functional decline in healthy elderly adults at 12 months. We observed improvements in acoramidis-treated participants relative to placebo-treated participants at Month 12 on secondary and exploratory endpoints including NT-proBNP, serum TTR concentration and KCCQ-OS.

Acoramidis was generally well-tolerated with no safety signals of clinical concern identified. To protect the integrity of Part B, as sponsor, our access to unblinded adverse event data for Part A excludes adverse events leading to a cardiovascular hospitalization (as determined by investigators) excepting events with the outcome of death. Adverse events, or AEs, occurred in 85.3% of placebo-treated participants and 91.9% of acoramidis-treated participants. In both the placebo and active treatment groups, most of the AEs were mild to moderate in severity. Serious adverse events, or SAEs, occurred in 23.2% of placebo-treated participants and 20.2% of acoramidis-treated participants. AEs leading to death occurred in 6.2% of placebo-treated participants and 4.5% of acoramidis-treated participants.

We continue to believe acoramidis has the potential to demonstrate benefit on the 30-month hierarchical composite primary endpoint, which includes all-cause mortality and cardiovascular-related hospitalizations. We anticipate reporting top-line 30-month results from Part B of the ATTRibute-CM trial in mid-2023.

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Competition

If acoramidis is approved as a treatment for ATTR-CM, we expect to face competition from Vyndaqel / Vyndamax (tafamidis meglumine / tafamidis), which is approved in certain territories, including the United States, the European Union, and Japan as a treatment for ATTR-CM. Additionally, there are a number of RNAi, antisense oligonucleotide, antibody, and gene editing product candidates that are currently in development as potential treatments for ATTR-CM.

Low-dose Infigratinib: Achondroplasia

 

Summary

We are developing low-dose infigratinib, an oral FGFR1-3 selective tyrosine kinase inhibitor, or TKI, as a treatment option for children with achondroplasia. We are currently enrolling patients in PROPEL, a prospective observational study in children with achondroplasia and PROPEL 2, a Phase 2 dose-escalation and expansion study of low-dose infigratinib in children with achondroplasia. In July 2022, we reported initial data showing an increase from baseline in annualized growth velocity of +1.52 cm per year in children with achondroplasia ages 5 or older in PROPEL2’s fourth dose escalation cohort (0.125 mg/kg once a day). We have enrolled a fifth dose (0.25 mg/kg once a day) escalation cohort and anticipate sharing preliminary early results in the first quarter of 2023.

 

Market Opportunity

We believe that achondroplasia and other FGFR-driven skeletal dysplasias represent a potentially over five billion dollar total global market opportunity. The achondroplasia market alone has grown steadily since the end of 2021, driven by a newly available therapy driving children to seek treatment, as well as growing awareness of the new treatment among pediatric endocrinologists. We believe that low-dose infigratinib, if approved, would have meaningful commercial potential to demonstrate best-in-class efficacy as well as a differentiated oral route of administration preferred by many patients.

Condition Overview

Achondroplasia is the most frequent cause of disproportionate short stature, and mutations in the FGFR3 gene have been shown to be the molecular source of the condition. Achondroplasia has a prevalence of greater than 55,000 in the United States and European Union, and an estimated worldwide incidence of one in 10,000 to 30,000 live births. The condition leads to a disproportionate short stature with anomalies in bone development and potential for foramen magnum stenosis, spinal stenosis, cardiovascular complications and obesity. The average height is approximately 4’4” for a male and 4’1” for a female with achondroplasia. Lifespan and intelligence are most often normal.

Achondroplasia is an autosomal dominant condition caused by a gain-of-function point mutation in the FGFR3 gene. Approximately 97% of cases are due to G380R substitution and 80% of cases are the result of de novo mutations. FGFR3 is expressed in osteoblasts and chondrocytes where it plays a critical role in regulating bone growth through the MAPK pathway, which drives hypertrophic differentiation, and through the STAT1 pathway, which drives chondrocyte proliferation. Apart from growth hormones, which are approved in Japan, there is only one medicine approved for marketing by the FDA, European Medicines Agency, or the EMA, and the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency, or PMDA, for the treatment of achondroplasia: Voxzogo (vosoritide), a C-type natriuretic peptide, or CNP, analog which activates the MAPK pathway but not the STAT1 pathway.

 

Design Criteria

We are developing low-dose infigratinib based upon two key design principles – we seek to target achondroplasia at its source (FGFR3 gain-of-function mutations) in order to maximize clinical activity against all manifestations of the condition, not just height; and we seek to provide a tolerable oral treatment option in order to provide a reduced burden of treatment versus injection for children and their families. We believe low-dose infigratinib is the only investigational therapy in development that incorporates both of these design principles.

 

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Low-dose infigratinib is designed to directly target FGFR3 gain-of-function mutations which are the drivers behind the pathophysiology of achondroplasia. As an FGFR1-3 inhibitor, we believe that low-dose infigratinib has the potential to decrease pathologic signaling downstream of FGFR3 and treat achondroplasia at its source. Unlike potentially competitive CNP mimetic approaches, which only inhibit MAPK signaling, our approach is aimed at also inhibiting STAT1 signaling.

Low-dose infigratinib is also designed for an oral route of administration. Blinded market research indicates that oral administration is the preferred route of administration amongst healthcare providers who treat children with achondroplasia.

In the four dosing cohorts completed in our Phase 2 dose escalation trial as well as in the fifth dosing cohort as of February 9, 2023, low-dose infigratinib has been generally well-tolerated with no serious adverse events reported. As of February 9, 2023, there have been no discontinuations due to adverse events, no dose-dependent phosphate elevation, and no ocular adverse events.

Preclinical Data

Low-dose infigratinib has been studied preclinically in a mouse model of achondroplasia that recapitulates anomalies of the growth plates, vertebrae, and intervertebral discs. Investigators observed that low-dose infigratinib rescued ex vivo bone growth of mutant mouse embryo femurs after six days of treatment. Further, 15 days of treatment showed in vivo bone growth, which mimics human achondroplasia in many respects. Effects on both appendicular and axial skeletal parameters were observed in this study.

Below are figures demonstrating the extent of femur growth and intervertebral disc width rescue in wild-type, untreated model, and low-dose infigratinib treated (2 mg/kg) model mice:

https://cdn.kscope.io/fcd44fd10142e257387e2b3b083319f2-img187071172_2.jpg 

 

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In vivo bone growth was further demonstrated at lower doses (0.2 mg/kg and 0.5 mg/kg) by the same laboratory. Together, preclinical studies at all doses have demonstrated meaningful increases in skeletal growth parameters between treated and untreated mutant mice, as follows:

 

Increase in length compared to non-treated mouse (%)

https://cdn.kscope.io/fcd44fd10142e257387e2b3b083319f2-img187071172_3.jpg 

 

Notably, treatment with low-dose infigratinib did not modify the expression of FGFR1 in the hypertrophic zone of the growth plate. The effects seen were mainly due to FGFR3 inhibition, with no other gross side effects being observed in these preclinical studies. Furthermore, survival was improved after 15 days in low-dose infigratinib treated mice, regardless of dose, as compared to untreated mice.

Clinical Development Plan

We are currently enrolling patients in PROPEL, a prospective observational study in children with achondroplasia. The study will establish annualized growth velocity, or AGV, for each child for a minimum period of six months. PROPEL is designed to provide baseline measurements for children that we anticipate enrolling in either PROPEL 2, an ongoing Phase 2 study of low-dose infigratinib, or in an anticipated Phase 3 trial to follow.

PROPEL 2 is designed as an open-label, dose-escalation and expansion trial in children with achondroplasia prior to growth plate closure. The primary objective of this study is to assess safety and tolerability in children with achondroplasia. Secondary objectives will include PK analyses, change in growth velocity, and assessment of quality of life.

In July 2022, we reported initial data showing an increase from baseline in annualized growth velocity of +1.52 cm per year in children with achondroplasia ages 5 or older in PROPEL2’s fourth dose escalation cohort. We have enrolled a fifth dose escalation cohort and anticipate sharing preliminary early results in the first quarter of 2023.

We anticipate initiating a Phase 3 pivotal trial for low-dose infigratinib in achondroplasia in 2023, following feedback from the FDA.

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Key Competitors

Low-dose infigratinib is the only oral direct FGFR1-3 inhibitor that has been publicly disclosed in development for the treatment of achondroplasia. There are three other identified companies developing compounds for the treatment of achondroplasia using alternative mechanistic approaches: Ascendis Pharma A/S (TransCon CNP), Sanofi S.A. (SAR442501), and Ribomic (RBM-007). In addition, BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc. has developed Voxzogo (vosoritide), a CNP analog, for the treatment of achondroplasia.

Encaleret: Autosomal Dominant Hypocalcemia Type 1 and Hypoparathyroidism

 

Summary

Encaleret is an oral small molecule antagonist of the calcium sensing receptor, or CaSR, that we are developing for the treatment of Autosomal Dominant Hypocalcemia Type 1, or ADH1. We are currently studying encaleret in ongoing Phase 2b and Phase 3 clinical trials as a potential treatment for patients with ADH1. We reported results from the Phase 2b study in 2022. In 13 participants in the Phase 2b trial, treatment with encaleret resulted in rapid and sustained restoration of normal mineral homeostasis, with mean values of blood calcium, urinary calcium, and blood parathyroid hormone, or PTH within the normal range by day 5 of therapy and sustained at 24 weeks, and was well-tolerated without any reported serious adverse events. Encaleret has been granted orphan drug and fast track designations by the FDA for the treatment of autosomal dominant hypocalcemia. Encaleret has also been granted orphan designation by the European Commission as a treatment for hypoparathyroidism, inclusive of ADH1.

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Market Opportunity

We believe that ADH1 is a market with significant commercial potential. ADH1 is caused by gain-of-function variants of the CASR gene, and independent studies of general population genetic datasets estimate that there are 25,000 carriers of ADH1-causative variants in the EU and US. If approved, encaleret could be the first target-directed therapy indicated for ADH1.

Design Criteria

Encaleret is an investigational, orally administered, small molecule antagonist of the CaSR. It has been studied in more than 1,200 human subjects in its prior development and was observed to increase serum calcium in a dose-dependent manner. The rationale for developing encaleret as a potential treatment for patients with ADH1 is based on both non-clinical and clinical evidence. Antagonists of the CaSR have been shown in vitro to shift the aberrant CaSR “set-point” back towards a normal IC50 for calcium and in vivo to increase PTH secretion, elevate blood calcium concentrations, and reduce urinary calcium excretion. By selectively antagonizing the CaSR, encaleret may restore normal CaSR function in individuals with ADH1 and may address symptoms associated with hypocalcemia and hypercalciuria

 

Clinical Data

On June 13, 2022, we reported positive data from our Phase 2b clinical trial of encaleret in patients with ADH1. Thirteen adults with ADH1 caused by nine unique CASR variants participated in the three-period, Phase 2b, open-label, dose-ranging clinical trial. Oral calcium and activated vitamin D supplements were discontinued prior to encaleret initiation. Periods 1 and 2 each evaluated encaleret over the course of five inpatient days and Period 3 included a 24-week outpatient evaluation. Based on 24-week outpatient data, we observed:

Mean values of blood calcium, urinary calcium, and blood parathyroid hormone, key biochemical parameters of mineral homeostasis, were normalized by Period 2, Day 5 and were sustained through Period 3, Week 24 of the trial.
At Week 24 of encaleret treatment, 92% (12/13) of participants had achieved normal trough blood calcium levels in the absence of extra-dietary calcium supplements and active vitamin D, and 77% (10/13) of participants had normal urinary calcium excretion.
Encaleret was well-tolerated with no serious adverse events reported; there were no treatment discontinuations or study withdrawals.

 

The participants who completed Period 3 of the study were eligible to continue in an open-label extension of up to 25 months.

We also announced the initiation of our Phase 3 registrational trial of encaleret in ADH1 in 2022.

 

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Key Competitors

We believe encaleret is the only molecule that has been publicly disclosed to be in development specifically for the treatment of ADH1. There are other identified companies developing compounds for the treatment of hypoparathyroidism using recombinant parathyroid hormone analogs or PTH receptor agonists: Ascendis Pharma A/S (TransCon PTH), Amolyt Pharma (AZP-3601), EnteraBio Ltd. (EB612), and Extend Biosciences Inc. (EXT607).

BBP-418: Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy Type 2I

BBP-418 is an investigational, orally administered, small molecule substrate replacement therapy that we are developing for the treatment of LGMD2I, also known as LGMDR9. We are currently studying BBP-418 in an ongoing open-label dose-ascending Phase 2 clinical trial in patients with LGMD2I. We reported top-line data in October 2022. We anticipate initiating a global Phase 3 clinical trial in 2023.

Disease Overview

LGMD2I is an inherited neuromuscular disorder characterized by lower-limb weakness and loss of ambulation, and possible pulmonary and cardiac dysfunction. BBP-418 has a potentially-addressable population of 7,000, including both LGMD2I and other potentially-addressable dystroglycanopathies, in the United States and Europe. Currently, there is no disease-modifying treatment available. Standard of care is supportive care to alleviate end organ dysfunction.

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Design Criteria

The rationale for developing BBP-418 as a potential treatment for LGMD2I is based on our understanding of the disease mechanism. In healthy tissue, properly functioning Fukutin-Related Protein, or FKRP, glycosylates alpha-dystroglycan, or αDG. This glycosylation helps to stabilize muscle cells by binding extracellular ligands. In LGMD2I, mutated FKRP does not function properly and results in dysfunctional, hypo-glycosylated αDG in muscle cells, limiting αDG’s ability to function as a “shock absorber” for muscle fibers and increasing cellular susceptibility to damage.

BBP-418 is designed to target the disease mechanism of LGMD2I by supplying supra-physiological levels of BBP-418 upstream to drive residual activity of the mutant FKRP enzyme and potentially increase αDG glycosylation levels.

 

Clinical Data

On October 14, 2022, we shared positive interim data from the ongoing Phase 2 clinical trial of BBP-418 in patients with LGMD2I at the 27th International Hybrid Annual Congress of the World Muscle Society. The open-label, dose-ascending Phase 2 trial enrolled 14 participants, including both ambulatory and non-ambulatory patients with LGMD2I, across three cohorts. As of August 16, 2022, based on the data after 12 months of treatment, we observed:

Increased glycosylation αDG in all dose cohorts, with an average increase in αDG ratio of +0.21 at day 90.
Greater than 75% reduction in creatine kinase, a key marker of muscle breakdown, sustained over 12 months.
Improvements from baseline in the north star assessment for dysferlinopathy (0.95) and 10-meter walk test (10MWT) velocity (0.09 m/s) at 12 months.
No treatment-related serious adverse events or dose limiting toxicities reported with 12 months of treatment.

 

Clinical Development Plan

Our Phase 2 clinical trial investigating BBP-418 in LGMD2I is ongoing. Following the release of top-line data from our Phase 2 trial, we have engaged with regulatory authorities to align on a Phase 3 trial design and intend to initiate a Phase 3 clinical trial in 2023.

Key Competitors

We believe BBP-418 is the only clinical-stage oral therapy disclosed to be in clinical development for potentially disease-modifying treatment of LGMD2I. There are no other oral therapies publicly known to be in development. There are two other identified companies developing gene therapies for the treatment of LGMD2I: Asklepios Biopharmaceutical, Inc. (LION-101) and Atamayo Therapeutics (ATA-001-FKRP/ATA-100).

 

BBP-631: Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia

Summary

We are developing BBP-631, a AAV gene transfer product candidate, for the treatment of CAH, caused by 21OHD. BBP-631 was granted fast track designation from the FDA for the treatment of congenital adrenal hyperplasia 21-hydroxylase deficiency in 2021. As of February 22, 2023, four patients have been treated at the first two dose levels (1.5e13 vg/kg and 3e13 vg/kg). We plan to provide an update from patients treated at the third dose level (6e13 vg/kg) by the end of 2023.

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Market Opportunity

We believe that CAH due to 21-hydroxylase, or 21OH, deficiency has one of the five largest patient populations that may be amenable to gene therapy, and is therefore a significant commercial opportunity. Over 75,000 people are estimated to be in the addressable CAH population across the US and EU; furthermore, the unmet need is significant given the side effects associated with the present standard of care treatments.

Disease Overview

CAH is a debilitating and life-threatening disease with no available cure, despite newborn screening for the disease being conducted in every U.S. state. The disease is defined by an inability to produce cortisol and aldosterone, and an excess production of testosterone. Lack of cortisol disrupts glucose metabolism and the body’s normal response to stress, leading to potentially fatal adrenal crises, while lack of aldosterone disrupts sodium retention, resulting in low blood pressure, arrhythmia and dehydration. Additionally, excess testosterone causes virilization in females, often leading to ambiguous genitalia and masculinizing features at birth. Hormonal changes during puberty compound the CAH deficiencies. Females often suffer from limited fertility and require intensive treatment before, during and after pregnancy, and up to 40% of adult males will have adrenal rest tumors that can lead to gonadal dysfunction and infertility, occasionally requiring surgery.

Over 90% of CAH cases are caused by 21OHD, a genetic defect in the CYP21A2 gene coding for the enzyme 21OH. Mutations resulting in loss of enzymatic activity of 21OH prevent conversion of progesterone into 11-deoxycorticosterone and 17-hydroxyprogesterone (17OHP) into 11-deoxycortisol, which are the precursors to aldosterone and cortisol, respectively.

CAH patients with 21OHD can be divided into two categories depending on the type of genetic mutation: classic and non-classic. We are primarily focused on treating classic patients, who have the more severe phenotype and that can be categorized into simple virilizing (approximately 25% of patients) and salt-wasting (approximately 75%) by the severity of aldosterone deficiency and level of residual 21OH enzyme activity. Patients with the salt-wasting form of disease have residual enzyme activity of 0% to 1% of normal and patients with the simple virilizing phenotype have 1% to 10% enzyme activity. All patients with the classic form require treatment at birth, as cortisol deficiency can lead to adrenal crisis as early as one to four weeks of life and can quickly lead to death. The salt-wasting form has an incidence of one in 20,000 births, while the simple virilizing form has an incidence of one in 60,000 births. Together, these translate to an estimated 600 classic patients born in the United States and Europe per year. We estimate there are more than 75,000 patients in the United States and Europe in the total addressable patient population.

Current standard of care treatments do not cure patients, but replace missing glucocorticoids, such as cortisol, and mineralocorticoids, such as aldosterone, as well as reduce excessive androgen secretion. Although glucocorticoids are the mainstay of CAH therapy, individuals respond in varying ways, and chronic use of glucocorticoids in children and adults requires careful management because of the well-known side effects of these drugs, such as Cushingoid features, metabolic disease, obesity, hypertension, growth retardation, glucose intolerance, electrolyte disturbance, bone demineralization/increased risk of fracture and delayed puberty. Clinical management of classic CAH is often a very difficult balance between hyperandrogenism and hypercortisolism.

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Design Criteria

BBP-631 is an intravenously administered AAV5 gene transfer product candidate designed for the treatment of CAH due to 21OHD by replacing the 21OH enzyme in the adrenal cortex. Replacement of enzyme function has the potential to normalize flux through the pathway, simultaneously addressing the lack of cortisol and aldosterone, as well as the excess of testosterone and other androgens. Genotype-phenotype correlation studies in CAH suggest that non-classic patients, who are often asymptomatic and do not require treatment, have enzyme activity that is as little as 10% to 20% of normal individuals. We believe that an AAV gene therapy may be able to restore this level of enzymatic activity in CAH patients with both simple virilizing and salt-wasting forms of disease, providing substantial clinical impact and potentially eliminating the need for treatment with exogenous steroids. BBP-631 was granted both FDA and EMA orphan drug designation in 2018 for the treatment of CAH caused by 21OHD.

Preclinical Data

Initial preclinical activity was explored in a Cyp21 knockout mouse model using AAVrh10. An intravenous, or IV, injection of vector genomes was observed to improve multiple disease-related factors over a 15-week duration window, including an increase in body weight, a decrease in urinary progesterone (the main substrate of 21OH), and an increase in renin expression (signaling an increased capacity for salt retention).

A study in non-human primates, or NHP, comparing evaluated AAV serotypes 1, 5 and 6 identified AAV5 as the optimum serotype. We observed significant transfection in the adrenals where 21OH is synthesized. Additionally, AAV5 has relatively low seroprevalence in the human population, which may limit potential immunogenicity issues.

We have completed two sets of NHP studies designed to evaluate durability of expression, dosing/transgene expression relationships and preliminary safety. In the first set of experiments, which evaluated a lower dose of 3x1012 vector genomes per kilogram, we observed sustained increases in Cyp21 mRNA levels up to six months out. We did not observe rapid decreases in vector genome counts and mRNA levels due to adrenal cell turnover between 1.5 and six months, providing preliminary support for sustained transgene expression.

In a second set of experiments, a total of 20 NHPs were treated with BBP-631 at one of three IV doses. Vector copy number and transgene mRNA expression in the adrenal glands were analyzed at four and 12 weeks post-dosing in the low- and medium-dose arms, and at 12 and 24 weeks post-dosing in the high-dose arm. No dose-related AEs were observed at any of the doses tested at any time point.

Overall, treatment with BBP-631 resulted in high vector copy number, or VCN, and mRNA expression in the adrenal gland, suggesting strong tropism and uptake of BBP-631 for the adrenal gland. In the high-dose arm, VCNs were maintained between 12 and 24 weeks. Furthermore, mRNA levels increased between 4 and 12 weeks for the medium dose arm and were consistent between 12 and 24 weeks for the high dose arm. Researchers also saw dose-dependent increases in both VCNs and mRNA levels across the three doses tested.

Key Competitors

There are two alternative therapeutic classes being investigated for treatment of CAH. The first are corticotropin-releasing factor type 1, or CRF1, receptor antagonists. CRF1 receptor antagonists regulate the release of adrenocorticotropic hormone, or ACTH, from the pituitary gland, which stimulates androgen and cortisol synthesis in the adrenal gland. In healthy individuals, endogenous cortisol provides negative feedback to the release of ACTH, which keeps androgen synthesis well-regulated. Because this negative feedback is severely impaired in CAH patients, supraphysiologic doses of exogenous steroids are required to normalize androgen synthesis in these patients. While CRF1 receptor antagonists may regulate androgen synthesis, they do not address the lack of cortisol or aldosterone production in these patients. Therefore, steroid supplementation is still required with CRF1 receptor antagonists. Two CRF receptor antagonists, Crinecerfont (under development by Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc.) and Tildacerfont (under development by Spruce Biosciences, Inc.), are currently in Phase 3 and Phase 2b clinical trials, respectively.

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The second alternative therapeutic class is ACTH receptor antagonists. Inhibition of this pathway, which is downstream of the CRF1 pathway, also results in inhibition of androgen and cortisol synthesis in the adrenal gland. However, like CRF1 receptor antagonists, ACTH inhibitors do not address the lack of cortisol or aldosterone production in these patients. CRN04904, an oral ACTH antagonist, is currently in Phase 1 clinical development by Crinetics Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

While these alternative therapeutic mechanisms attempt to address meaningful aspects of the disease by potentially reducing the need for exogenous steroids, neither is able to address the disease at its source by targeting the complete set of features that define the disease. In particular, these mechanisms cannot obviate the need to administer steroids because they do not address the body’s inability to synthesize cortisol and aldosterone. In contrast, we believe enzymatic replacement by gene therapy has the potential to simultaneously address all facets of the disease by restoring proper flux through the hormonal pathways, reducing androgen production by providing alternative pathways for the precursor molecules to be converted into cortisol or aldosterone.

 

KRAS-Driven Cancers

Our KRAS inhibitor portfolio is focused on approaches to inhibit oncogenic RAS signaling through novel selective mechanisms for the treatment of KRAS-driven cancers. It is comprised of three main efforts:

KRAS G12C dual inhibitor
BBO-8520 is the first-known, investigational small molecule to directly bind and inhibit KRAS G12C in both its active (guanosine triphosphate, or GTP, bound) and inactive (guanosine diphosphate, or GDP, bound) conformations. In binding the active state, BBO-8520 is designed to disrupt effector protein binding and downstream oncogenic signaling. As of the date of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, we are not aware of a clinical-stage KRAS G12C inhibitor that directly binds the switch II pocket and inhibits the active and oncogenic GTP-bound form of the protein. In addition to its novel dual reactivity, BBO-8520 is designed to have a significantly higher potency than first-generation KRAS G12C GDP-only inhibitors. We have shown this molecule to be active in vitro against several resistant mutants that have evolved in response to GDP-inhibitor treatment. In vivo, BBO-8520 showed differentiated activity in some PDX models and led to tumor regression. We believe this could lead to differentiated activity in cancer patients with KRAS G12C driven cancer. We plan to enter the clinic with BB-8520 dual inhibitor in 2023.
PI3Kα:RAS breaker
We are also pursuing PI3Kα:RAS breakers, investigational small molecules that are designed to block RAS driven PI3Kα activation. Currently, the only approved PI3Kα inhibitor blocks both aberrant and normal kinase activity from the protein, which results in hyperglycemia and insulin-driven resistance. Through novel protein-protein interaction inhibition, breaker molecules have the potential to deliver tumor selectivity that spares normal glucose metabolism by interfering with oncogenic signaling. In addition to treating patients currently served by PI3Kα inhibitors, we expect this novel approach to potentially have broad utility for many other patients with oncogene-driven tumors (including HER2/HER3 dependency, RAS mutant tumors, PI3Kα mutant tumors, and tumors driven by RTK activation of RAS signaling) as both a monotherapy and in combination with other agents. We anticipate development candidate selection will take place in 2023 with IND filing in 2024.
Pan-KRAS inhibitor
Our pan-KRAS program is designed to target multiple KRAS mutants, including KRAS G12D and KRASG12V, which are present in a large percentage of colorectal, pancreatic and non-small cell lung cancer tumors. We have achieved in vivo target engagement and have identified lead candidates with promising oral bioavailability. Development candidate selection is planned for 2023.

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KRAS is a member of the RAS family of oncogenes, which also includes HRAS and NRAS, and together comprises some of the most well-known monogenic drivers of cancer. Mutations in NRAS are frequently found in leukemia and melanoma, while HRAS is frequently mutated in bladder, thyroid, and head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. KRAS mutations are a frequent driver of a number of the largest cancer indications with high unmet medical need, including 30% of non-small cell lung cancers, 98% of pancreatic adenocarcinomas and 45% of colorectal adenocarcinomas. The most common KRAS mutations involve a change from glycine at position 12 in the protein to aspartic acid (G12D, 36% of all KRAS mutations), valine (G12V, 24%), and cysteine (G12C, 15%), but also include mutations at glycine 13 and glutamine 61. In aggregate, over 500,000 patients in the United States and Europe are diagnosed with KRAS-driven cancers, annually.

 

BBP-398: Targeting Multiple Oncology Indications

BBP-398 is a small molecule inhibitor of SHP2 being developed as a potential treatment of cancers driven by hyperactive receptor tyrosine kinase, or RTK, or MAPK signaling. We entered into a co-development agreement with Bristol-Myers-Squibb or BMS, in July 2021 for the development of BBP-398 in combination with nivolumab, a PD-1 inhibitor, and we entered into an exclusive license agreement with BMS in May 2022 under which Navire granted BMS exclusive rights to develop and commercialize BBP-398 in all indications worldwide, except for the People’s Republic of China, Macau, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and South Korea (Asia Region).

We are currently enrolling patients in three separate Phase 1 trials (NAV-1001, NAV-1003, and NAV-1004), which we are responsible for completing per the terms of the license agreement with BMS and the clinical trial collaboration and supply agreement with Amgen Inc., entered into in January 2022, regarding the conduct of combination trials with Amgen’s KRAS G12C inhibitor (sotarasib).

NAV-1001 is an ongoing monotherapy dose escalation and expansion clinical trial in patients with RAS and RTK mutations.

In 2022, we initiated NAV-1003 and NAV-1004, combination trials with BBP-398 and KRAS G12C inhibitor (sotorasib; Amgen) and PD-1 (nivolumab; BMS) inhibitors, respectively.

Additionally, LianBio is now enrolling patients in a Phase 1 monotherapy dose escalation trial in the Asian Region per our Exclusive License Agreement that we entered into in August 2020. A Phase 1 clinical trial studying BBP-398 and an EGFR inhibitor (osimertinib) will be run in China by LianBio, and is expected to initiate in 2023.

 

BBP-671: PKAN and Organic Acidemias

BBP-671 is an oral, small molecule, allosteric activator of pantothenate kinases that we are developing for the treatment of Pantothenate Kinase Associated Neurodegeneration, or PKAN, and Organic Acidemias, or OAs. BBP-671 is currently in Phase 1 development. The healthy volunteer portion of the Phase 1 clinical trial has been completed, demonstrating initial safety and tolerability, target engagement, and suitable PK for BBP-671. The OA cohort of the Phase 1 clinical trial is now enrolling. BBP-671 has received orphan drug designation as a treatment of propionic acidemia, or PA, and as a treatment of PKAN in the United States and the European Union. BBP-671 was also designated as a drug for a rare pediatric disease for treatment of both PKAN and PA.

PKAN is a rare genetic disorder with progressive neurodegeneration. Early onset patients typically demonstrate motor deficits with possible visual problems from retinal degeneration within six years of age. Later onset disease is heterogeneous, with psychiatric symptoms and progressive parkinsonism developing in late childhood to adulthood. The prevalence of PKAN is approximately one in 1,000,000, with between 800 to 850 patients in the United States and the European Union. There are currently no approved treatments for PKAN.

OAs are caused by mutations in enzymes that disrupt amino acid metabolism leading to acute decompensations requiring hospitalization, as well as long-term complications involving multiple organ systems, such as the heart, pancreas, kidney, liver and brain. The incidence of OAs is approximately five in 100,000 births. The standard of care includes dietary restriction and supplementation, but unmet need remains high due to metabolic decompensations and long-term complications.

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BBP-812: Canavan Disease

BBP-812 is an AAV gene therapy product candidate that we are developing for the treatment of Canavan Disease. BBP-812 was granted fast track designation from the FDA for the treatment of Canavan Disease in 2021 and our Phase 1/2 clinical trial of BBP-812 for the treatment of Canavan disease is ongoing. We presented preliminary biomarker data from three patients at our low dose (1.32e13 vg/kg) on October 13, 2022, and expect to dose the first patient at our high dose (3e14 vg/kg) by the end of 2023.

Canavan Disease is a fatal, progressive neurodegenerative disorder that begins in infancy. The disease is a leukodystrophy, caused by degradation of white matter in the brain. Patients typically miss developmental milestones, have a rapidly increasing head circumference, progressive lack of motor control, and often do not live past their mid-teens. The incidence of Canavan Disease is approximately one in 100,000 births worldwide.  No treatments are approved for Canavan Disease; care is focused on symptom management.

Additional Program-Related Information

Manufacturing

We do not own or operate, and currently have no plans to establish, any manufacturing facilities. We currently depend on third-party contract manufacturing organizations, or CMOs, for all of our requirements of raw materials, drug substance and drug product for our preclinical research and our ongoing clinical trials of our product candidates. Aside from a manufacturing agreement that we entered into in December 2019 through one of our subsidiaries, that was terminated by mutual agreement in May 2022, we have not entered into long-term agreements with our current CMOs. We intend to continue to rely on CMOs for later-stage development and commercialization of our product candidates, including any additional product candidates that we may identify. Although we rely on CMOs, we have personnel and third-party consultants with extensive manufacturing experience to oversee the relationships with our contract manufacturers. Several of our development candidates have or are in the near term expected to have redundant and overlapping drug substance and drug product supply chains.

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Sales and Marketing

We intend to build a commercial infrastructure in the United States and selected other territories to support the commercialization of our current product candidates when we believe a regulatory approval in a particular territory is likely. Because most of our target indications are rare diseases with a concentrated prescribing audience and a small number of key opinion leaders who influence the treatments prescribed for the relevant patient population, we currently believe that we can effectively address each market using our own targeted, specialty sales and marketing organization supported by internal sales personnel, an internal marketing group and distribution support. To date, we have received regulatory approval for two products that we previously developed, TRUSELTIQ (infigratinib) for the treatment of patients with previously-treated locally advanced or metastatic cholangiocarcinoma, or CCA harboring an FGFR2 fusion or rearrangement, and NULIBRY (fosdenopterin) for injection as the first therapy to reduce the risk of mortality in patients with MoCD Type A. Sentynl Therapeutics, Inc., or Sentynl, acquired global rights to NULIBRY in the first quarter of 2022 and is now responsible for the ongoing development and commercialization of NULIBRY in the United States and developing, manufacturing and commercializing fosdenopterin globally. Following FDA approval of TRUSELTIQ (infigratinib) in May 2021, we were the principal selling party of this product in the United States. Commencing in January 2022, we sold the remaining transitional supply of TRUSELTIQ to Helsinn Healthcare S.A. and Helsinn Therapeutics (U.S.), Inc., or collectively, Helsinn, and Helsinn became the principal selling party. Helsinn announced that it will stop supplying TRUSELTIQ by March 31, 2023. In December 2022, we entered into a mutual termination agreement with Helsinn concerning, among other things, steps to wind down the commercialization of infigratinib in oncology indications. (See Note 11 to our consolidated financial statements.)

We evaluate our commercialization strategy as we advance each product candidate through clinical development and to regulatory approval. In any core markets outside of the United States that we may identify, where appropriate, we may utilize strategic partners, distributors or contract sales forces to expand the commercial availability of our product candidates, if approved. We currently do not expect that we will require large pharmaceutical partners for the commercialization of any of our product candidates, if approved, although we may consider partnering in certain territories or indications or for other strategic purposes.

Programs Prioritized for Partnership

In January 2022, we committed to a restructuring initiative that included, among other components, the reprioritization of our development programs. As part of this restructuring initiative, we plan to advance several programs only through potentially new partnerships. Some of these investigational programs are identified below.

BBP-711, an oral, small molecule inhibitor of glycolate oxidase, for treatment of primary hyperoxaluria and patients who experience recurrent kidney stones;
BBP-589/PTR-01, an IV administered recombinant collagen type VII, or rC7, protein replacement therapy candidate, for the treatment of recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa;
BBP-681, a transdermal P13K inhibitor, for treatment of cutaneous venous and lymphatic malformations;
BBP-561, a topical KLK5/7 inhibitor, for treatment of Netherton Syndrome;
BBP-472, a series of small molecule P13KB inhibitors, for treatment of children with autism spectrum disorders characterized by loss of the PTEN protein; and
BBP-818, a preclinical AAV gene therapy product candidate, for treatment of classic galactosemia.

In addition, we have a preclinical discovery program (BBP-954) for irreversible inhibitors of glutathione peroxidase 4, or GPX4, for the treatment of solid and hematological cancers. In December 2022, our co-development partner, Helsinn, terminated our partnership for this discovery program.

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Intellectual Property

Overview

We strive to protect the proprietary technology that we believe is important to our business through a variety of methods, including seeking and maintaining patents and patent applications intended to cover our product candidates and compositions, their methods of use and processes for their manufacture, our platform technologies and any other aspects of inventions that are commercially important to the development of our business. We seek to obtain domestic and international patent protection and, in addition to filing and prosecuting patent applications in the United States, we may file counterpart patent applications in additional countries where we believe such foreign filing is likely to be beneficial, including Australia, Canada, Europe, China, Japan, and Mexico. We have entered into various license agreements to obtain the rights to use certain patents for the development and commercialization of our product candidates. See “Our Material Agreements.” We also rely on trade secrets to protect aspects of our business that are not amenable to, or that we do not consider appropriate for, patent protection.

Our success will depend on our ability to obtain and maintain patent and other proprietary rights protecting our commercially important technology, inventions and know-how related to our business, defend and enforce our current and future issued patents, if any, preserve the confidentiality of our trade secrets and operate without infringing the valid and enforceable patents and proprietary rights of third parties. We continually assess and refine our intellectual property strategy in order to best fortify our position, and file additional patent applications when our intellectual property strategy warrants such filings. We also rely on know-how, continuing technological innovation, and potential in-licensing opportunities to develop and maintain our intellectual property portfolio. We seek to obtain domestic and international patent protection, and endeavor to promptly file patent applications for new commercially valuable inventions.

The patent positions of biopharmaceutical companies like us are generally uncertain and involve complex legal, scientific, and factual questions. In addition, the coverage claimed in a patent application can be significantly reduced before the patent is issued, and patent scope can be reinterpreted by the courts after issuance. Moreover, many jurisdictions permit third parties to challenge issued patents in administrative proceedings, which may result in further narrowing or even cancellation of patent claims. We cannot predict whether the patent applications we are currently pursuing will issue as patents in any particular jurisdiction or whether the claims of any patents, if issued, will provide sufficient protection from competitors.

Because patent applications in the United States and certain other jurisdictions are maintained in secrecy for 18 months or potentially even longer, and since publication of discoveries in the scientific or patent literature often lags behind actual discoveries, we cannot be certain of the priority of inventions covered by pending patent applications. Moreover, we may have to participate in interference proceedings or derivation proceedings declared by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, or USPTO, to determine priority of invention.

As of February 13, 2023, our intellectual property portfolio is composed of 135 issued patents and 81 patent applications that we license from academic and research institutions and other third parties, and 33 issued patents and 374 pending patent applications that we own or co-own, including through our subsidiaries. These patents and patent applications generally provide us with the rights to develop our product candidates in the United States and worldwide. Our intellectual property portfolios for each of the programs that we consider to be our core value drivers are further described below.

For our subsidiary, QED Therapeutics, Inc., we license rights from Novartis to two issued U.S. patents, and related pending and issued foreign patents and patent applications in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, Japan and Mexico, as well as in other countries in Asia and in South America, that are directed to compositions of matter of infigratinib. The foreign patents and patent applications, if issued, are expected to expire between 2025 and 2030. The issued U.S. patents are expected to expire between 2028 and 2029, which takes into account patent term adjustments granted by the USPTO as well as a terminal disclaimer of one issued patent to another U.S. patent. Upon the initial approval of infigratinib, QED applied for 1,516 days of patent term extension, or PTE, for the U.S. patent covering the infigratinib compound; assuming grant of the PTE application, the term of this patent may be extended from August 25, 2029, to October 19, 2033.

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We also license rights from Novartis to two issued U.S. patents, one pending U.S. patent application, and related pending and issued foreign patents and patent applications in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, Japan and Mexico, as well as in other countries in Asia and in South America, that are directed to pharmaceutical formulations containing infigratinib. The issued patents and patent applications, if issued, are expected to expire in 2034. In addition, we license rights from Novartis to one issued U.S. patent, one pending U.S. patent application, and related pending and issued foreign patents and patent applications in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, Japan and Mexico, as well as in other countries in Asia, that are directed to methods of treating hypophosphatemic disorders. The issued patents and patent applications, if issued, are expected to expire in 2033.

We also license rights from Inserm Transfert ESA and Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris to two issued U.S. patents and one pending U.S. patent application, and one granted patent in Europe, that are directed to methods of treating skeletal dysplasias, achondroplasia using infigratinib. The issued U.S. patents, granted patent in Europe, and the pending patent application, if issued, are expected to expire in 2032.

In addition, QED Therapeutics, Inc. owns three pending U.S. patent applications, one pending Patent Cooperation Treaty, or PCT, patent application, and related pending foreign patent applications in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, Japan and Mexico, as well as in other countries in Asia, that are directed to methods of treating various cancers or skeletal disorders using infigratinib. If any patents issue from these patent applications, such patents would be expected to expire between 2040 and 2043.

For our subsidiary Eidos Therapeutics, Inc., we license rights from the Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University, or Stanford, to ten issued U.S. patents, two pending U.S. patent applications, one issued European patent, and one issued Japanese patent with claims directed to composition of matter and methods of use relating to acoramidis. These patents are expected to expire in 2031 or 2033.

In addition, we own four issued U.S. patents, three pending U.S. patent applications, and 51 related foreign patent applications pending in various jurisdictions, including Australia, Canada, Europe, China, Japan, and Mexico, with claims directed to salt and solid forms, methods of manufacturing, dosing methods, and formulations relating to acoramidis. The issued U.S. patents are expected to expire in 2038 or 2039. The pending U.S. and foreign patent applications, if issued, are also expected to expire in 2038 or 2039.

For our subsidiary Adrenas Therapeutics, Inc., we own one pending U.S. patent application, one pending PCT patent application, and six related foreign patent applications pending in various jurisdictions including Canada, China, Europe, Japan, and Korea with claims directed to recombinant AAV vectors relating to BBP-631 and dosing of the same. These patent applications, if issued, are expected to expire in 2039 or 2042.

Our subsidiary TheRas, Inc. co-owns with Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc., or Leidos, and Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC, or Livermore, six pending U.S. patent applications, four pending PCT applications, and eight pending foreign applications with claims directed to modulators of K-RAS, which include claims to the modulators as composition of matter and their use in therapy, including the treatment of cancer. Any patents issuing from these applications are expected to expire between 2042 and 2044. In addition, TheRas co-owns with Leidos and Livermore one pending U.S. patent application, one pending PCT application, and two pending foreign applications with claims directed to compounds that may disrupt interactions between PI3Kα and small GTPases, which include claims to the compounds as composition of matter and their use in therapy, including the treatment of cancer. Any patents issuing from these applications are expected to expire in 2043.

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Our Material Agreements

Acoramidis

License Agreement with Alexion

In September 2019, through our subsidiary Eidos Therapeutics, Inc., or Eidos, we entered into a license agreement, or the Alexion License Agreement, with Alexion Pharma International Operations Unlimited Company, a subsidiary of Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., or together, Alexion, to develop and commercialize acoramidis in Japan. Additionally, in September 2019, Eidos entered into a stock purchase agreement with Alexion, pursuant to which Eidos sold to Alexion 556,173 shares of its common stock for aggregate cash proceeds of $25.0 million. Under the terms of the Alexion License Agreement, Eidos granted Alexion an exclusive license to certain of our intellectual property rights to develop, manufacture and commercialize acoramidis in Japan. In consideration for the license grant, Eidos received an upfront payment of $25.0 million, with the potential for an additional one-time payment of $30.0 million subject to the achievement of a regulatory milestone. In addition, Eidos is entitled to receive royalties in the low double-digits on net sales by Alexion of acoramidis in Japan. The royalty rate is subject to reduction if Alexion is required to obtain intellectual property rights from third parties to develop, manufacture or commercialize acoramidis in Japan, or upon the introduction of generic competition into the market.

License Agreement with the Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University

In April 2016, through Eidos, we entered into an exclusive license agreement with Stanford for rights relating to novel transthyretin aggregation inhibitors. Under our agreement, Stanford has granted us an exclusive worldwide license to make, use and sell products that are covered by the licensed patent rights. This license grant expires when the last licensed patent expires. The patent rights exclusively licensed to us under the license are described in more detail above under the heading “Intellectual property— Eidos Therapeutics, Inc.”

Stanford retains the right, on behalf of itself and all other non-profit academic research institutions, to practice under the patent rights for any non-profit purpose, including sponsored research and collaborations. We may grant sublicenses to third parties so long as we are actively pursuing the development or commercialization of products covered by the patent rights. We may also be required to sublicense our rights under the agreement at Stanford’s request under certain conditions, including if we are unwilling or unable to serve a potential market or territory and there is a third party willing to be a sublicensee in such market or territory.

We are obligated to pay to Stanford a yearly license maintenance fee during the term of the agreement, but we may offset the maintenance fee against earned royalty payments due on net sales occurring in that year. Stanford is entitled to receive a royalty as a percentage of net sales of licensed products, in the low single digits. We have agreed to pay Stanford a percentage of non-royalty revenue we receive from our sublicensees, with the amount owed decreasing annually for three years based on when we enter into the applicable sublicense agreement. In addition, we are obligated to pay Stanford up to approximately $1.0 million upon the achievement of specific intellectual property, clinical and regulatory milestone events. In the event of a change of control transaction with respect to Eidos, we are obligated to pay Stanford a change of control fee of $250,000 in connection with the assignment of the license agreement to the acquirer of Eidos.

Under the license agreement with Stanford, we are obligated to use commercially reasonable efforts to develop, manufacture, and commercialize at least one licensed product; to develop markets for such licensed products; and to meet certain development milestones as agreed upon between us and Stanford.

Subject to the expiration of the license grant described above, the agreement does not have a specified term. We may terminate the agreement by providing prior written notice to Stanford, and Stanford has the right to terminate the agreement if we fail to achieve certain milestones or make payments under the agreement, or are not actively pursuing development of a licensed product, or if we otherwise materially breach the agreement and fail to cure such breach within a specified grace period.

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Infigratinib: License Agreement with Novartis International Pharmaceutical Ltd.

In January 2018, through our subsidiary QED Therapeutics, Inc., or QED, we entered into a license agreement with Novartis International Pharmaceutical Ltd., or Novartis, for certain intellectual property rights, including patents and know-how, related to infigratinib for the treatment of patients with FGFR-driven diseases, including CCA, UC and achondroplasia. We refer to this agreement as the Novartis License.

Pursuant to the Novartis License, we obtained a license to research, develop, make, have made, use, import, offer for sale, sell, have sold and otherwise commercialize infigratinib, as well as therapeutic products incorporating infigratinib that would, but for the license grant, infringe Novartis’ license patent rights, or that were developed using or that incorporate or embody Novartis’ licensed know-how, in all fields of use worldwide. The license grant to us includes the right to sublicense through multiple tiers. We also have certain rights to intellectual property licensed to Novartis’ affiliate under a materials transfer agreement with a third party.

The Novartis License is subject to Novartis’ existing obligations to supply a third party with infigratinib to support the third party’s clinical trials, and we have an ongoing obligation to inform Novartis of our or our sublicensees’ intent to seek regulatory approval for and commercialize infigratinib for various indications, with potential reversionary rights to Novartis in the event of a subsequent decision not to seek regulatory approval and commercialization, or a determination by Novartis that we have failed to sufficiently pursue regulatory approval and commercialization, for Novartis to grant such third party limited rights to develop and commercialize infigratinib.

Under the terms of the Novartis License, we made a one-time payment of $15.0 million to Novartis and agreed to issue shares of Series A preferred stock of QED valued at approximately $1.7 million in the aggregate to Novartis. In addition, we are obligated to make contingent milestone payments totaling $60.0 million upon achievement of certain regulatory milestones. We are also obligated to make contingent milestone payments totaling $35.0 million upon achievement of certain sales milestones for therapeutic products incorporating infigratinib. QED also agreed to pay Novartis tiered low double-digit royalties on net sales of therapeutic products incorporating infigratinib. Following the FDA's approval of TRUSELTIQ in May 2021, we paid a one-time regulatory milestone payment to Novartis of $20.0 million.

Under the Novartis License, we are required to use commercially reasonable efforts to develop infigratinib, and to obtain regulatory approval for and commercialize infigratinib in the United States and the European Union.

We may terminate the Novartis License in its entirety or on a product-by-product or country-by-country basis at any time with 60 days’ prior written notice to Novartis. Novartis may terminate if QED ceases to function as a going concern, is the subject of certain bankruptcy or similar proceedings, or otherwise winds down or discontinues its business. Either party may terminate for material breach that is not cured by the other party within a specified time period of receiving notice of such material breach. Otherwise, the Novartis License terminates on a product-by-product and country-by-country basis on the latest of the expiration of licensed patent rights, the expiration of regulatory exclusivity, or the tenth anniversary of the first commercial sale in such country.

Fosdenopterin: Asset Purchase Agreement with Alexion Pharma Holding Unlimited Company

In June 2018, through our subsidiary Origin Biosciences, Inc., we entered into an asset purchase agreement with Alexion Pharma Holding Unlimited Company, or Alexion Pharma, pursuant to which we acquired Alexion’s right, title and interest in certain assets relating to fosdenopterin, including patents and other intellectual property rights.

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In the event that a priority review voucher is granted to us by the FDA, we have agreed to pay Alexion Pharma a percentage in the mid-teens of any proceeds received by us from our sale of the PRV to a third party. If we do not sell the PRV to a third party within 180 days after our receipt of the PRV, we are obligated to pay Alexion Pharma $18.8 million, which amount is creditable against any amounts otherwise due to Alexion Pharma in accordance with the preceding sentence upon any future sale by us of the PRV. We are obligated to make contingent milestone payments totaling $3.0 million upon achievement of certain development milestones and $17.0 million upon achievement of certain sales milestones for products containing the fosdenopterin molecule. We also agreed to pay Alexion Pharma tiered royalties ranging from the low-to mid-teens on net sales of products containing the fosdenopterin molecule.

In 2021, we paid Alexion a $2.0 million regulatory milestone upon the FDA’s approval of NULIBRY, a $1.0 million sales-based milestone payment, and $15.0 million as a result of the sale of the PRV to Eidos.

We are obligated to use commercially reasonable efforts to obtain a PRV, achieve specified milestone events and commercialize at least one product containing the fosdenopterin molecule after receipt of regulatory approval.

 

BBP-398: License Development and Commercialization Agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company

On May 12, 2022, BridgeBio and our subsidiary, Navire Pharma, Inc., or Navire, entered into an exclusive license development and commercialization agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, or BMS, pursuant to which Navire granted BMS exclusive rights to develop and commercialize Navire’s product candidate, BBP-398, in all indications worldwide, except for the People’s Republic of China, Macau, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, and South Korea, or collectively, the Asia Region. We refer to this agreement as the Navire-BMS License Agreement.

Under the terms of the Navire-BMS License Agreement, Navire was entitled to receive a non-refundable, upfront payment of $90.0 million, which Navire collected in full in June 2022. Additionally, Navire is eligible to receive additional payments totaling up to approximately $815.0 million in the aggregate, subject to the achievement of development, regulatory and commercial milestones, as well as tiered royalties in the low-to-mid teens as a percentage of adjusted net sales by BMS of the licensed products sold worldwide, outside of the Asia Region. Navire will retain the option to acquire higher royalties in the United States in connection with funding a portion of development costs upon the initiation of registrational studies. Based on the terms of the Navire-BMS License Agreement, Navire will continue to lead its ongoing Phase 1 monotherapy and combination therapy trials and BMS will lead and fund all other development and commercialization activities.

Government Regulation

Government authorities in the United States at the federal, state and local level and in other countries regulate, among other things, the research, development, manufacture, testing, quality control, approval, labeling, packaging, storage, record-keeping, promotion, advertising, distribution, post-approval monitoring and reporting, marketing and export and import of drug and biological products, including gene therapies, as well as diagnostics, and any future product candidates. Generally, before a new drug, biologic or diagnostic can be marketed, considerable data demonstrating its quality, safety and efficacy must be obtained, organized into a format specific for each regulatory authority, submitted for review and approved, authorized, or cleared by the applicable regulatory authority.

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U.S. Government Regulation of Drug and Biological Products

In the United States, the FDA regulates drugs under the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, or FDCA, and its implementing regulations and biologics under the FDCA and the Public Health Service Act, or PHSA, and their implementing regulations. Both drugs and biologics also are subject to other federal, state and local statutes and regulations, such as those related to competition. The process of obtaining regulatory approvals and the subsequent compliance with appropriate federal, state, and local statutes and regulations requires the expenditure of substantial time and financial resources. Failure to comply with the applicable U.S. requirements at any time during the product development process, approval process or following approval may subject an applicant to administrative actions or judicial sanctions. These actions and sanctions could include, among other actions, the FDA’s refusal to approve pending applications, withdrawal of an approval, license revocation, a clinical hold, untitled or warning letters, voluntary or mandatory product recalls or market withdrawals, product seizures, total or partial suspension of production or distribution, injunctions, fines, refusals of government contracts, restitution, disgorgement and civil or criminal fines or penalties. Any agency or judicial enforcement action could have a material adverse effect on our business, the market acceptance of our product candidates, if approved, and our reputation.

Our product candidates must be approved by the FDA through either a New Drug Application, or NDA or a Biologics License Application, or BLA, process before they may be legally marketed in the United States. The process generally involves the following:

completion of extensive preclinical studies in accordance with applicable regulations, including studies conducted in accordance with Good Laboratory Practices, or GLP, requirements;
submission to the FDA of an IND, which must become effective before human clinical trials may begin;
approval by an Institutional Review Board, or IRB, or independent ethics committee at each clinical trial site before each human trial may be initiated;
performance of adequate and well-controlled human clinical trials in accordance with applicable IND regulations, Good Clinical Practices, or GCP, requirements and other clinical trial-related regulations to establish the safety and efficacy of the investigational product for each proposed indication;
submission to the FDA of an NDA or BLA;
a determination by the FDA within 60 days of its receipt of an NDA or BLA to accept the filing for review;
satisfactory completion of one or more FDA pre-approval inspections of the manufacturing facility or facilities where the drug or biologic will be produced to assess compliance with Current Good Manufacturing Practices, or cGMP, requirements to assure that the facilities, methods and controls are adequate to preserve the drug or biologic’s identity, strength, quality and purity;
potential FDA audit of the clinical trial sites that generated the data in support of the NDA or BLA;
payment of user fees for FDA review of the NDA or BLA; and
FDA review and approval of the NDA or BLA, including consideration of the views of any FDA advisory committee, prior to any commercial marketing or sale of the drug or biologic in the United States.

The preclinical and clinical testing and approval process requires substantial time, effort and financial resources, and the regulatory scheme for drugs and biologics is evolving and subject to change at any time. We cannot be certain that any approvals for our product candidates will be granted on a timely basis, or at all.

Preclinical Studies

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Before testing any drug, biological or gene therapy candidate in humans, the product candidate must undergo rigorous preclinical testing. Preclinical studies include laboratory evaluation of product chemistry and formulation, as well as in vitro and animal studies to assess safety and in some cases to establish a rationale for therapeutic use. The conduct of preclinical studies is subject to federal and state regulations and requirements, including GLP regulations for safety/toxicology studies.

An IND sponsor must submit the results of the preclinical tests, together with manufacturing information, analytical data, any available clinical data or literature and plans for clinical trials, among other things, to the FDA as part of an IND. An IND is a request for authorization from the FDA to administer an investigational product to humans, and must become effective before human clinical trials may begin. Some long-term preclinical testing, such as animal tests of reproductive AEs and carcinogenicity, may continue after the IND is submitted. An IND automatically becomes effective 30 days after receipt by the FDA, unless before that time, the FDA raises concerns or questions related to one or more proposed clinical trials and places the trial on clinical hold. In such a case, the IND sponsor and the FDA must resolve any outstanding concerns before the clinical trial can begin. As a result, submission of an IND may not result in the FDA allowing clinical trials to commence. Additionally, the review of information in an IND submission may prompt FDA to, among other things, scrutinize existing INDs or any marketed products and could generate requests for information or clinical holds on other product candidates or programs.

 

Clinical Trials

The clinical stage of development involves the administration of the investigational product to healthy volunteers or patients under the supervision of qualified investigators, generally physicians not employed by or under the trial sponsor’s control, in accordance with GCP requirements, which include the requirement that all research subjects provide their informed consent for their participation in any clinical trial. Clinical trials are conducted under protocols detailing, among other things, the objectives of the clinical trial, dosing procedures, subject selection and exclusion criteria and the parameters to be used to monitor subject safety and assess efficacy. Each protocol, and any subsequent amendments to the protocol, must be submitted to the FDA as part of the IND. Furthermore, each clinical trial must be reviewed and approved by an IRB for each institution at which the clinical trial will be conducted to ensure that the risks to individuals participating in the clinical trials are minimized and are reasonable in relation to anticipated benefits. The IRB also approves the informed consent form that must be provided to each clinical trial subject or his or her legal representative, and must monitor the clinical trial until completed. There also are requirements governing the reporting of ongoing clinical trials and completed clinical trial results to public registries. Information about certain clinical trials, including clinical trial results, must be submitted within specific timeframes for publication on the www.clinicaltrials.gov website.

In addition to the submission of an IND to the FDA before initiation of a clinical trial in the United States, certain human clinical trials involving recombinant or synthetic nucleic acid molecules are subject to oversight by institutional biosafety committees, or IBC's, as set forth in the NIH Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules, or NIH Guidelines. Under the NIH Guidelines, recombinant and synthetic nucleic acids are defined as (i) molecules that are constructed by joining nucleic acid molecules and that can replicate in a living cell (i.e., recombinant nucleic acids); (ii nucleic acid molecules that are chemically or by other means synthesized or amplified, including those that are chemically or otherwise modified but can base pair with naturally occurring nucleic acid molecules (i.e., synthetic nucleic acids); or (iii) molecules that result from the replication of those described in (i) or (ii). Specifically, under the NIH Guidelines, supervision of human gene transfer trials includes evaluation and assessment by an IBC, a local institutional committee that reviews and oversees research utilizing recombinant or synthetic nucleic acid molecules at that institution. The IBC assesses the safety of the research and identifies any potential risk to public health or the environment, and such review may result in some delay before initiation of a clinical trial. While the NIH Guidelines are not mandatory unless the research in question being conducted at or sponsored by institutions receiving NIH funding of recombinant or synthetic nucleic acid molecule research, many companies and other institutions not otherwise subject to the NIH Guidelines voluntarily follow them.

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A sponsor who wishes to conduct a clinical trial outside of the United States may, but need not, obtain FDA authorization to conduct the clinical trial under an IND. If a foreign clinical trial is not conducted under an IND, the sponsor may submit data from the clinical trial to the FDA in support of an NDA or BLA. The FDA will accept a well-designed and well-conducted foreign clinical study not conducted under an IND if the study was conducted in accordance with GCP requirements, and the FDA is able to validate the data through an onsite inspection if deemed necessary.

Clinical trials generally are conducted in three sequential phases, known as Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3, and may overlap.

Phase 1 clinical trials generally involve a small number of healthy volunteers or disease-affected patients who are initially exposed to a single dose and then multiple doses of the product candidate. The primary purpose of these clinical trials is to assess the metabolism, pharmacologic action, side effect tolerability and safety of the product candidate.
Phase 2 clinical trials involve studies in disease-affected patients to evaluate proof of concept and/or determine the dose required to produce the desired benefits. At the same time, safety and further PK and PD information is collected, possible adverse effects and safety risks are identified, and a preliminary evaluation of efficacy is conducted.
Phase 3 clinical trials generally involve a large number of patients at multiple sites and are designed to provide the data necessary to demonstrate the effectiveness of the product for its intended use, its safety in use and to establish the overall benefit/risk relationship of the product and provide an adequate basis for product labeling.

Post-approval trials, sometimes referred to as Phase 4 clinical trials, may be conducted after initial marketing approval. These trials are used to gain additional experience from the treatment of patients in the intended therapeutic indication and are commonly intended to generate additional safety data regarding use of the product in a clinical setting. In certain instances, the FDA may mandate the performance of Phase 4 clinical trials as a condition of approval of an NDA or BLA.

Progress reports detailing the results of the clinical trials, among other information, must be submitted at least annually to the FDA and written IND safety reports must be submitted to the FDA and the investigators 15 days after the trial sponsor determines the information qualifies for reporting for serious and unexpected suspected AEs, findings from other studies or animal or in vitro testing that suggest a significant risk for human subjects and any clinically important increase in the rate of a serious suspected adverse reaction over that listed in the protocol or investigator brochure. The sponsor must also notify the FDA of any unexpected fatal or life-threatening suspected adverse reaction as soon as possible but in no case later than seven calendar days after the sponsor’s initial receipt of the information.

Phase 1, Phase 2, Phase 3 and other types of clinical trials may not be completed successfully within any specified period, if at all. The FDA or the sponsor may suspend or terminate a clinical trial at any time on various grounds, including a finding that the research subjects or patients are being exposed to an unacceptable health risk. Similarly, an IRB can suspend or terminate approval of a clinical trial at its institution if the clinical trial is not being conducted in accordance with the IRB’s requirements or if the drug or biologic has been associated with unexpected serious harm to patients. Additionally, some clinical trials are overseen by an independent group of qualified experts organized by the clinical trial sponsor, known as a data safety monitoring board or committee. This group provides authorization for whether a trial may move forward at designated check points based on access to certain data from the trial. Concurrent with clinical trials, companies usually complete additional animal studies and also must develop additional information about the chemistry and physical characteristics of the drug or biologic as well as finalize a process for manufacturing the product in commercial quantities in accordance with cGMP requirements. The manufacturing process must be capable of consistently producing quality batches of the product and, among other things, companies must develop methods for testing the identity, strength, quality and purity of the final product. Additionally, appropriate packaging must be selected and tested, and stability studies must be conducted to demonstrate that the product candidates do not undergo unacceptable deterioration over their shelf life.

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FDA Review Process

Following completion of the clinical trials, data are analyzed to assess whether the investigational product is safe and effective for the proposed indicated use or uses. The results of preclinical studies and clinical trials are then submitted to the FDA as part of an NDA or BLA, along with proposed labeling, chemistry and manufacturing information to ensure product quality and other relevant data. The NDA or BLA is a request for approval to market the drug or biologic for one or more specified indications and must contain proof of safety and efficacy for a drug or safety, purity and potency for a biologic. The application may include both negative and ambiguous results of preclinical studies and clinical trials, as well as positive findings. Data may come from company-sponsored clinical trials intended to test the safety and efficacy of a product’s use or from a number of alternative sources, including studies initiated by investigators. To support marketing approval, the data submitted must be sufficient in quality and quantity to establish the safety and efficacy of the investigational product to the satisfaction of FDA. FDA approval of an NDA or BLA must be obtained before a drug or biologic may be marketed in the United States.

Under the Prescription Drug User Fee Act, or PDUFA, as amended, each NDA or BLA must be accompanied by a user fee. FDA adjusts the PDUFA user fees on an annual basis. Fee waivers or reductions are available in certain circumstances, including a waiver of the application fee for the first application filed by a small business. Additionally, no user fees are assessed on NDAs or BLAs for products designated as orphan drugs, unless the product also includes a non-orphan indication.

The FDA reviews all submitted NDAs and BLAs before it accepts them for filing, and may request additional information rather than accepting the NDA or BLA for filing. The FDA must make a decision on accepting an NDA or BLA for filing within 60 days of receipt, and such decision could include a refusal to file by the FDA. Once the submission is accepted for filing, the FDA begins an in-depth review of the NDA or BLA. Under the goals and policies agreed to by the FDA under PDUFA, the FDA targets ten months, from the filing date, in which to complete its initial review of a new molecular entity NDA or original BLA and respond to the applicant, and six months from the filing date of a new molecular entity NDA or original BLA designated for priority review. The FDA does not always meet its PDUFA goal dates for standard and priority NDAs or BLAs, and the review process is often extended by FDA requests for additional information or clarification.

The FDA has developed the Oncology Center of Excellence Real-Time Oncology Review, or RTOR, pilot program to facilitate a more efficient review process for certain oncology product candidates. Although this program allows FDA to begin reviewing clinical data prior to submission of a complete NDA or BLA, the program is not intended to change the PDUFA review timelines.

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Before approving an NDA or BLA, the FDA will conduct a pre-approval inspection of the manufacturing facilities for the new product to determine whether they comply with cGMP requirements. The FDA will not approve the product unless it determines that the manufacturing processes and facilities are in compliance with cGMP requirements and adequate to assure consistent production of the product within required specifications. The FDA also may audit data from clinical trials to ensure compliance with GCP requirements. Additionally, the FDA may refer applications for novel products or products which present difficult questions of safety or efficacy to an advisory committee, typically a panel that includes clinicians and other experts, for review, evaluation and a recommendation as to whether the application should be approved and under what conditions, if any. The FDA is not bound by recommendations of an advisory committee, but it considers such recommendations when making decisions on approval. The FDA likely will reanalyze the clinical trial data, which could result in extensive discussions between the FDA and the applicant during the review process. After the FDA evaluates an NDA or BLA, it will issue an approval letter or a Complete Response Letter. An approval letter authorizes commercial marketing of the drug or biologic with specific prescribing information for specific indications. A Complete Response Letter indicates that the review cycle of the application is complete, and the application will not be approved in its present form. A Complete Response Letter usually describes all of the specific deficiencies in the NDA or BLA identified by the FDA. The Complete Response Letter may require the applicant to obtain additional clinical data, including the potential requirement to conduct additional pivotal Phase 3 clinical trial(s) and/or to complete other significant and time-consuming requirements related to clinical trials, or to conduct additional preclinical studies or manufacturing activities. If a Complete Response Letter is issued, the applicant may either resubmit the NDA or BLA, addressing all of the deficiencies identified in the letter, or withdraw the application or request an opportunity for a hearing. Even if such data and information are submitted, the FDA may decide that the NDA or BLA does not satisfy the criteria for approval. Data obtained from clinical trials are not always conclusive and the FDA may interpret data differently than we interpret the same data.

 

Orphan Drug Designation and Exclusivity

Under the Orphan Drug Act, the FDA may grant orphan drug designation to a drug or biological product intended to treat a rare disease or condition, which is generally a disease or condition that affects fewer than 200,000 individuals in the United States, or 200,000 or more individuals in the United States and for which there is no reasonable expectation that the cost of developing and making the product available in the United States for this type of disease or condition will be recovered from sales of the product.

Orphan drug designation must be requested before submitting an NDA or BLA. After the FDA grants orphan drug designation, the identity of the therapeutic agent and its potential orphan use are disclosed publicly by the FDA. Orphan drug designation does not convey any advantage in or shorten the duration of the regulatory review and approval process.

If a product that has orphan drug designation subsequently receives the first FDA approval for the disease or condition for which it has such designation, the product is entitled to orphan drug exclusivity, which means that the FDA may not approve any other applications to market the same drug for the same indication for seven years from the date of such approval, except in limited circumstances, such as a showing of clinical superiority to the product with orphan exclusivity by means of greater effectiveness, greater safety or providing a major contribution to patient care or in instances of drug supply issues. Competitors, however, may receive approval of either a different product for the same indication or the same product for a different indication but that could be used off-label in the orphan indication. Orphan drug exclusivity also could block the approval of our products for seven years if a competitor obtains approval before we do for the same product, as defined by the FDA, for the same indication we are seeking approval, or if our product is determined to be contained within the scope of the competitor’s product for the same indication or disease. If we pursue marketing approval for an indication broader than the orphan drug designation we have received, we may not be entitled to orphan drug exclusivity. Orphan drug status in the European Union has similar, but not identical, requirements and benefits.

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Rare Pediatric Disease Designation and Priority Review Vouchers

Under the FDCA, as amended, the FDA incentivizes the development of drugs and biologics that meet the definition of a “rare pediatric disease,” defined to mean a serious or life-threatening disease in which the serious of life-threatening manifestations primarily affect individuals aged from birth to 18 years and the disease affects fewer than 200,000 individuals in the United States or affects more than 200,000 in the United States and for which there is no reasonable expectation that the cost of developing and making in the United States a drug for such disease or condition will be received from sales in the United States of such drug. The sponsor of a product candidate for a rare pediatric disease may be eligible for a voucher that can be used to obtain a priority review for a subsequent human drug or biologic application after the date of approval of the rare pediatric disease drug product, referred to as a priority review voucher, or PRV. A sponsor may request rare pediatric disease designation from the FDA prior to the submission of its NDA or BLA. A rare pediatric disease designation does not guarantee that a sponsor will receive a PRV upon approval of its NDA or BLA. Moreover, a sponsor who chooses not to submit a rare pediatric disease designation request may nonetheless receive a PRV upon approval of their marketing application if they request such a voucher in their original marketing application and meet all of the eligibility criteria. If a PRV is received, it may be sold or transferred an unlimited number of times. Congress has extended the PRV program through September 30, 2024, with the potential for PRVs to be granted through September 30, 2026.

 

Expedited Development and Review Programs

A sponsor may seek to develop and obtain approval of its product candidates under programs designed to accelerate the development, FDA review and approval of new drugs and biologics that meet certain criteria. For example, the FDA has a fast track program that is intended to expedite or facilitate the process for reviewing new drugs and biologics that are intended to treat a serious or life threatening disease or condition and demonstrate the potential to address unmet medical needs for the condition. Fast track designation applies to both the product and the specific indication for which it is being studied. For a fast track-designated product, the FDA may consider sections of the NDA or BLA for review on a rolling basis before the complete application is submitted, if the sponsor provides a schedule for the submission of the sections of the application, the FDA agrees to accept sections of the application and determines that the schedule is acceptable, and the sponsor pays any required user fees upon submission of the first section of the application. The sponsor can request the FDA to designate the product for fast track status any time before receiving NDA or BLA approval, but ideally no later than the pre-NDA or pre-BLA meeting.

A product submitted to the FDA for marketing, including under a fast track program, may be eligible for other types of FDA programs intended to expedite development or review, such as priority review and accelerated approval. Priority review means that, for a new molecular entity or original BLA, the FDA sets a target date for FDA action on the marketing application at six months after accepting the application for filing as opposed to ten months. A product is eligible for priority review if it is designed to treat a serious or life-threatening disease condition and, if approved, would provide a significant improvement in safety and effectiveness compared to available therapies. The FDA will attempt to direct additional resources to the evaluation of an application for a new drug or biologic designated for priority review in an effort to facilitate the review. If criteria are not met for priority review, the application for a new molecular entity or original BLA is subject to the standard FDA review period of ten months after FDA accepts the application for filing. Priority review designation does not change the scientific/medical standard for approval or the quality of evidence necessary to support approval.

 

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Under the Food and Drug Omnibus Reform Act of 2022, or FDORA, a platform technology incorporated within or utilized by a drug or biologic is eligible for designation as a designated platform technology if (1) the platform technology is incorporated in, or utilized by, a drug approved under an NDA or BLA; (2) preliminary evidence submitted by the sponsor of the approved or licensed drug, or a sponsor that has been granted a right of reference to data submitted in the application for such drug, demonstrates that the platform technology has the potential to be incorporated in, or utilized by, more than one drug without an adverse effect on quality, manufacturing, or safety; and (3) data or information submitted by the applicable person indicates that incorporation or utilization of the platform technology has a reasonable likelihood to bring significant efficiencies to the drug development or manufacturing process and to the review process. A sponsor may request the FDA to designate a platform technology as a designated platform technology concurrently with, or at any time after, submission of an IND application for a drug that incorporates or utilizes the platform technology that is the subject of the request. If so designated, the FDA may expedite the development and review of any subsequent original NDA or BLA for a drug that uses or incorporates the platform technology. Designated platform technology status does not ensure that a drug will be developed more quickly or receive a faster FDA review process or ultimate FDA approval. In addition, the FDA may revoke a designation if the FDA determines that a designated platform technology no longer meets the criteria for such designation.

A product may also be eligible for accelerated approval if it is designed to treat a serious or life-threatening disease or condition and generally provides a meaningful advantage over available therapies upon a determination that the product has an effect on either a surrogate or intermediate clinical endpoint that is reasonably likely to predict clinical benefit or on a clinical endpoint that can be measured earlier than irreversible morbidity or mortality, or IMM, that is reasonably likely to predict an effect on IMM or other clinical benefit, taking into account the severity, rarity, or prevalence of the disease or condition and the availability or lack of alternative treatments. As a condition of approval, the FDA may require that a sponsor of a drug or biologic receiving accelerated approval perform adequate and well-controlled post-marketing confirmatory clinical trials with due diligence and, under FDORA, the FDA is permitted to require, as appropriate, that such confirmatory studies be underway prior to approval or within a specified time period after accelerated approval is granted. In addition, the FDA currently requires, unless otherwise informed by the agency, pre-approval of promotional materials, which could adversely impact the timing of the commercial launch of the product. Under FDORA, the FDA has increased authority for expedited procedures to withdraw approval of a drug or indication approved under accelerated approval if, for example, the confirmatory trial fails to verify the predicted clinical benefit of the product.

Additionally, a drug or biologic may be eligible for designation as a breakthrough therapy if the product is intended, alone or in combination with one or more other drugs or biologics, to treat a serious or life-threatening condition and preliminary clinical evidence indicates that the product may demonstrate substantial improvement over currently approved therapies on one or more clinically significant endpoints, such as substantial treatment effects observed early in clinical development. If the FDA designates a breakthrough therapy, it may take actions appropriate to expedite the development and review of the application, which may include holding meetings with the sponsor and the review team throughout the development of the therapy; providing timely advice to, and interactive communication with, the sponsor regarding the development of the drug to ensure that the development program to gather the nonclinical and clinical data necessary for approval is as efficient as practicable; involving senior managers and experienced review staff, as appropriate, in a collaborative, cross-disciplinary review; assigning a cross-disciplinary project lead for the FDA review team to facilitate an efficient review of the development program and to serve as a scientific liaison between the review team and the sponsor; and considering alternative clinical trial designs when scientifically appropriate, which may result in smaller trials or more efficient trials that require less time to complete and may minimize the number of patients exposed to a potentially less efficacious treatment. Breakthrough therapy designation comes with all of the benefits of fast track designation, which means that the sponsor may file sections of the BLA for review on a rolling basis if certain conditions are satisfied, including an agreement with the FDA on the proposed schedule for submission of portions of the application and the payment of applicable user fees before the FDA may initiate a review.

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As part of the 21st Century Cures Act, Congress amended the FDCA to facilitate an efficient development program for, and expedite review of regenerative medicine advanced therapies, or RMATs, which include cell and gene therapies, therapeutic tissue engineering products, human cell and tissue products, and combination products using any such therapies or products. RMATs do not include those human cells, tissues, and cellular and tissue based products regulated solely under section 361 of the PHSA and 21 CFR Part 1271. This program is intended to facilitate efficient development and expedite review of regenerative medicine therapies, which are intended to treat, modify, reverse, or cure a serious or life-threatening disease or condition and qualify for RMAT designation. A sponsor may request that the FDA designate a product candidate as a RMAT concurrently with or at any time after submission of an IND. The FDA has 60 calendar days to determine whether the product candidate meets the criteria, including whether there is preliminary clinical evidence indicating that the product candidate has the potential to address unmet medical needs for a serious or life-threatening disease or condition. A BLA for a product candidate that has received RMAT designation may be eligible for priority review or accelerated approval through use of surrogate or intermediate endpoints reasonably likely to predict long-term clinical benefit, or reliance upon data obtained from a meaningful number of sites. Benefits of RMAT designation also include early interactions with FDA to discuss any potential surrogate or intermediate endpoint to be used to support accelerated approval. A product candidate with RMAT designation that is granted accelerated approval and is subject to post-approval requirements may fulfill such requirements through the submission of clinical evidence from clinical studies, patient registries, or other sources of real world evidence, such as electronic health records; the collection of larger confirmatory data sets; or post-approval monitoring of all patients treated with such therapy prior to its approval.

The FDA has also announced the availability of the RTOR pilot program for oncology product candidates that are likely to demonstrate substantial improvements over available therapy, which may include drugs previously granted breakthrough therapy designation for the same or other indications and candidates meeting other criteria for other expedited programs, such as fast track and priority review. Submissions for RTOR consideration should also have straightforward study designs and endpoints that can be easily interpreted (such as overall survival or progression free survival). Acceptance into the RTOR program does not guarantee or influence approvability of the application, which is subject to the usual benefit-risk evaluation by FDA reviewers, but the program allows FDA to review data earlier, before an applicant formally submits a complete application. The RTOR program does not affect FDA’s PDUFA timelines.

Even if a product qualifies for one or more of these programs, the FDA may later decide that the product no longer meets the conditions for qualification or the time period for FDA review or approval may not be shortened. Furthermore, fast track designation, priority review, accelerated approval, breakthrough therapy and RMAT designation do not change the standards for approval.

 

Pediatric Information and Pediatric Exclusivity

Under the Pediatric Research Equity Act, or PREA, certain NDAs and BLAs and certain supplements to an NDA or BLA must contain data to assess the safety and efficacy of the drug for the claimed indications in all relevant pediatric subpopulations and to support dosing and administration for each pediatric subpopulation for which the product is safe and effective. The FDA may grant deferrals for submission of pediatric data or full or partial waivers. The Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act, or FDASIA, amended the FDCA to require that a sponsor who is planning to submit a marketing application for a drug that includes a new active ingredient, new indication, new dosage form, new dosing regimen or new route of administration submit an initial Pediatric Study Plan, or PSP, within 60 days of an end-of-Phase 2 meeting or, if there is no such meeting, as early as practicable before the initiation of the Phase 3 or Phase 2/3 study. The initial PSP must include an outline of the pediatric study or studies that the sponsor plans to conduct, including study objectives and design, age groups, relevant endpoints and statistical approach, or a justification for not including such detailed information, and any request for a deferral of pediatric assessments or a full or partial waiver of the requirement to provide data from pediatric studies along with supporting information. The FDA and the sponsor must reach an agreement on the PSP. A sponsor can submit amendments to an agreed-upon initial PSP at any time if changes to the pediatric plan need to be considered based on data collected from preclinical studies, early phase clinical trials and/or other clinical development programs.

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A drug or biologic product can also obtain pediatric market exclusivity in the United States. Pediatric exclusivity, if granted, adds six months to existing exclusivity periods and patent terms. This six-month exclusivity, which runs from the end of other exclusivity protection or patent term, may be granted based on the voluntary completion of a pediatric study in accordance with an FDA-issued “Written Request” for such a study.

 

Post-Marketing Requirements

Following approval of a new product, the manufacturer and the approved product are subject to continuing regulation by the FDA, including, among other things, monitoring and record-keeping activities, reporting of adverse experiences to applicable regulatory authorities, complying with promotion and advertising requirements, which include, among other things, standards for direct-to-consumer advertising, requirements for promotional activities on the internet, restrictions on promoting products for unapproved uses or in patient populations that are not described in the product's approved label (known as “off-label use”) and limitations on industry-sponsored scientific and educational activities. Although physicians may prescribe legally available products for off-label uses, manufacturers may not market or promote such off-label uses. The FDA does not regulate the behavior of physicians in their choice of treatment, but the FDA regulations do impose stringent restrictions on manufacturers' communications regarding off-label uses. The FDA and other agencies actively enforce the laws and regulations prohibiting the promotion of off-label uses, and a company that is found to have improperly promoted off-label uses may be subject to significant liability, including investigation by federal and state authorities. Prescription drug promotional materials must be submitted to the FDA in conjunction with their first use or first publication, and may be required to be reviewed in advance in certain circumstances such as for products that receive accelerated approval.

Further, if there are any modifications to the drug or biologic, including changes in indications, labeling or manufacturing processes or facilities, the applicant may be required to submit and obtain FDA approval of a new NDA/BLA or NDA/BLA supplement, which may require the development of additional data or preclinical studies and clinical trials. Such regulatory reviews can result in denial or modification of the planned changes, or requirements to conduct additional tests or evaluations that can substantially delay or increase the cost of the planned changes.

The FDA may also place other conditions on approvals including the requirement for a REMS, to assure the safe use of the product. If the FDA concludes a REMS is needed, the sponsor of the NDA or BLA must submit a proposed REMS. The FDA will not approve the NDA or BLA without an approved REMS, if required. A REMS could include medication guides, physician communication plans or elements to assure safe use, such as restricted distribution methods, patient registries and other risk minimization tools. Any of these limitations on approval or marketing could restrict the commercial promotion, distribution, prescription or dispensing of products. Product approvals may be withdrawn for non-compliance with regulatory requirements, if problems occur following initial marketing or if the FDA determines that the product is no longer safe or effective.

FDA regulations require that products be manufactured in specific approved facilities and in accordance with cGMP regulations. We rely, and expect to continue to rely, on third parties for the production of clinical and commercial quantities of any approved products in accordance with cGMP regulations. NDA and BLA holders using contract manufacturers, laboratories or packagers are responsible for the selection and monitoring of qualified firms, and, in certain circumstances, qualified suppliers to these firms. These manufacturers must comply with cGMP regulations that require, among other things, quality control and quality assurance, the maintenance of records and documentation and the obligation to investigate and correct any deviations from cGMP. Manufacturers and other entities involved in the manufacture and distribution of approved drugs or biologics are required to register their establishments with the FDA and certain state agencies, and are subject to periodic unannounced inspections by the FDA and certain state agencies for compliance with cGMP requirements and other laws. Accordingly, manufacturers must continue to expend time, money and effort in the area of production and quality control to maintain cGMP compliance. The discovery of violative conditions, including failure to conform to cGMP regulations, could result in enforcement actions, and the discovery of problems with a product after approval may result in restrictions on a product, manufacturer or holder of an approved NDA or BLA, including recall or withdrawal of the product from the market.

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Any distribution of prescription drugs and biologics and pharmaceutical samples must comply with the U.S. Prescription Drug Marketing Act, or PDMA, and the PHSA. In addition, the Drug Supply Chain Security Act, or DSCSA, was enacted in 2013 with the aim of building an electronic system to identify and trace certain prescription drugs and biologics distributed in the United States. The DSCSA mandates phased-in and resource-intensive obligations for pharmaceutical manufacturers, wholesale distributors, and dispensers over a 10-year period that is expected to culminate in November 2023. The law's requirements include the quarantine and prompt investigation of a suspect product, to determine if it is illegitimate, notifying trading partners and the FDA of any illegitimate product, and compliance with product tracking and tracing requirements.

Once an approval is granted, the FDA may issue enforcement letters or withdraw the approval of the product if compliance with regulatory requirements and standards is not maintained or if problems occur after the drug or biologic reaches the market. Corrective action could delay drug or biologic distribution and require significant time and financial expenditures. Later discovery of previously unknown problems with a drug or biologic, including AEs of unanticipated severity or frequency, or with manufacturing processes, or failure to comply with regulatory requirements, may require revisions to the approved labeling to add new safety information, including the addition of new warning and contraindications; imposition of post-market studies or clinical trials to assess new safety risks; or imposition of distribution or other restrictions under a REMS program. Other potential consequences include, among other things:

mandated corrective advertising or communications with doctors;
restrictions on the marketing or manufacturing of the drug or biologic, suspension of the approval, complete withdrawal of the drug from the market or product recalls;
fines, warning letters or holds on post-approval clinical trials;
refusal of the FDA to approve applications or supplements to approved applications, or suspension or revocation of drug or biologic approvals;
drug or biologic seizure or detention, or refusal to permit the import or export of drugs; or
injunctions or the imposition of civil or criminal penalties.

Regulation of Companion Diagnostics

We believe that the success of certain of our product candidates may depend, in part, on the development and commercialization of a companion diagnostic. Companion diagnostics identify patients who are most likely to benefit from a particular therapeutic product; identify patients likely to be at increased risk for serious side effects as a result of treatment with a particular therapeutic product; or monitor response to treatment with a particular therapeutic product for the purpose of adjusting treatment to achieve improved safety or effectiveness. Companion diagnostics are regulated as medical devices by the FDA. In the United States, the FDCA and its implementing regulations, and other federal and state statutes and regulations govern, among other things, medical device design and development, preclinical and clinical testing, premarket clearance or approval, registration and listing, manufacturing, labeling, storage, advertising and promotion, sales and distribution, export and import, and post-market surveillance. Unless an exemption or FDA exercise of enforcement discretion applies, diagnostic tests generally require marketing clearance or approval from the FDA prior to commercialization. The two primary types of FDA marketing authorization applicable to a medical device are premarket notification, also called 510(k) clearance, and approval of a premarket, or PMA approval.

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To obtain 510(k) clearance for a medical device, or for certain modifications to devices that have received 510(k) clearance, a manufacturer must submit a premarket notification demonstrating that the proposed device is substantially equivalent to a previously cleared 510(k) device or to a preamendment device that was in commercial distribution before May 28, 1976, or a predicate device, for which the FDA has not yet called for the submission of a PMA. In making a determination that the device is substantially equivalent to a predicate device, the FDA compares the proposed device to the predicate device or predicate devices and assesses whether the subject device is comparable to the predicate device or predicate devices with respect to intended use, technology, design and other features which could affect safety and effectiveness. If the FDA determines that the subject device is substantially equivalent to the predicate device or predicate devices, the subject device may be cleared for marketing. The 510(k) premarket notification pathway generally takes from three to twelve months from the date the application is completed, but can take significantly longer.

PMA applications must be supported by valid scientific evidence, which typically requires extensive data, including technical, preclinical, clinical and manufacturing data, to demonstrate to the FDA’s satisfaction the safety and effectiveness of the device. For diagnostic tests, a PMA application typically includes data regarding analytical and clinical validation studies. As part of its review of the PMA, the FDA will conduct a pre-approval inspection of the manufacturing facility or facilities to ensure compliance with the Quality System Regulation, or QSR, which requires manufacturers to follow design, testing, control, documentation and other quality assurance procedures. The FDA’s review of an initial PMA application is required by statute to take between six to ten months, although the process typically takes longer, and may require several years to complete. If the FDA evaluations of both the PMA application and the manufacturing facilities are favorable, the FDA will either issue an approval letter or an approvable letter, which usually contains a number of conditions that must be met in order to secure the final approval of the PMA. If the FDA’s evaluation of the PMA or manufacturing facilities is not favorable, the FDA will deny the approval of the PMA or issue a not approvable letter. A not approvable letter will outline the deficiencies in the application and, where practical, will identify what is necessary to make the PMA approvable. Once granted, PMA approval may be withdrawn by the FDA if compliance with post-approval requirements, conditions of approval or other regulatory standards is not maintained or problems are identified following initial marketing.

On July 31, 2014, the FDA issued a final guidance document addressing the development and approval process for “In Vitro Companion Diagnostic Devices.” According to the guidance document, for novel therapeutic products that depend on the use of a diagnostic test and where the diagnostic device could be essential for the safe and effective use of the corresponding therapeutic product, the premarket application for the companion diagnostic device should be developed and approved or cleared contemporaneously with the therapeutic, although the FDA recognizes that there may be cases when contemporaneous development may not be possible. However, in cases where a drug cannot be used safely or effectively without the companion diagnostic, the FDA’s guidance indicates it will generally not approve the drug without the approval or clearance of the diagnostic device. The FDA also issued a draft guidance in July 2016 setting forth the principles for co-development of an in vitro companion diagnostic device with a therapeutic product. The draft guidance describes principles to guide the development and contemporaneous marketing authorization for the therapeutic product and its corresponding in vitro companion diagnostic.

Once cleared or approved, the companion diagnostic device must adhere to post-marketing requirements including the requirements of FDA’s quality system regulation, adverse event reporting, recalls and corrections along with product marketing requirements and limitations. Like drug and biologic makers, companion diagnostic makers are subject to unannounced FDA inspections at any time during which the FDA will conduct an audit of the product(s) and the Company’s facilities for compliance with its authorities.

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Biosimilars and Exclusivity

Certain of our product candidates are regulated as biologics. An abbreviated approval pathway for biological products shown to be similar to, or interchangeable with, an FDA-licensed reference biological product was created by the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009, or BPCI Act, as part of the ACA. This amendment to the PHSA, in part, attempts to minimize duplicative testing. Biosimilarity, which requires that the biological product be highly similar to the reference product notwithstanding minor differences in clinically inactive components and that there be no clinically meaningful differences between the product and the reference product in terms of safety, purity and potency, can be shown through analytical studies, animal studies and a clinical trial or trials. Interchangeability requires that a biological product be biosimilar to the reference product and that the product can be expected to produce the same clinical results as the reference product in any given patient and, for products administered multiple times to an individual, that the product and the reference product may be alternated or switched after one has been previously administered without increasing safety risks or risks of diminished efficacy relative to exclusive use of the reference biological product without such alternation or switch. Complexities associated with the larger, and often more complex, structure of biological products as compared to small molecule drugs, as well as the processes by which such products are manufactured, pose significant hurdles to implementation that are still being worked out by the FDA.

A reference biological product is granted four and twelve year exclusivity periods from the time of first licensure of the product. The FDA will not accept an application for a biosimilar or interchangeable product based on the reference biological product until four years after the date of first licensure of the reference product, and the FDA will not approve an application for a biosimilar or interchangeable product based on the reference biological product until twelve years after the date of first licensure of the reference product. “First licensure” typically means the initial date the particular product at issue was licensed in the United States. Date of first licensure does not include the date of licensure of (and a new period of exclusivity is not available for) a biological product if the licensure is for a supplement for the biological product or for a subsequent application by the same sponsor or manufacturer of the biological product (or licensor, predecessor in interest, or other related entity) for a change (not including a modification to the structure of the biological product) that results in a new indication, route of administration, dosing schedule, dosage form, delivery system, delivery device or strength, or for a modification to the structure of the biological product that does not result in a change in safety, purity, or potency. Therefore, one must determine whether a new product includes a modification to the structure of a previously licensed product that results in a change in safety, purity, or potency to assess whether the licensure of the new product is a first licensure that triggers its own period of exclusivity. Whether a subsequent application, if approved, warrants exclusivity as the “first licensure” of a biological product is determined on a case-by-case basis with data submitted by the sponsor.

Other Regulatory Matters

Manufacturing, sales, promotion and other activities following product approval are also subject to regulation by numerous regulatory authorities in the United States in addition to the FDA, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, including the Office of Inspector General and Office for Civil Rights, other divisions of the Department of HHS, the Department of Justice, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency and state and local governments.

Healthcare providers, physicians, and third party payors will play a primary role in the recommendation and prescription of any products for which we obtain marketing approval. Our current and future arrangements with healthcare providers and physicians and any future arrangements with third party payers, may expose us to broadly applicable fraud and abuse and other healthcare laws and regulations that may constrain the business or financial arrangements and relationships through which we market, sell and distribute any drugs for which we obtain marketing approval. In the United States, these laws include: the federal Anti-Kickback Statute, the False Claims Act, and the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

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The Anti-Kickback Statute makes it illegal for any person, including a prescription drug manufacturer (or a party acting on its behalf), to knowingly and willfully solicit, receive, offer or pay any remuneration, directly or indirectly, in cash or in kind, that is intended to induce or reward referrals, including the purchase, recommendation, order or prescription of a particular drug, for which payment may be made under a federal healthcare program, such as Medicare or Medicaid. Violations of this law are punishable by imprisonment, criminal fines, administrative civil money penalties and exclusion from participation in federal healthcare programs. In addition, a person or entity does not need to have actual knowledge of the statute or specific intent to violate it. Moreover, the ACA provides that the government may assert that a claim including items or services resulting from a violation of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute constitutes a false or fraudulent claim for purposes of the federal civil False Claims Act or federal civil money penalties.

Although we would not submit claims directly to payors, drug manufacturers can be held liable under federal civil and criminal false claims laws and civil monetary penalty laws, such as the federal civil False Claims Act, which imposes criminal and civil penalties, including through civil whistleblower or qui tam actions, against individuals or entities (including manufacturers) for, among other things, knowingly presenting, or causing to be presented to federal programs (including Medicare and Medicaid) claims for items or services, including drugs, that are false or fraudulent, claims for items or services not provided as claimed, or claims for medically unnecessary items or services. Penalties for a False Claims Act violation include three times the actual damages sustained by the government, plus mandatory civil penalties for each separate false claim, the potential for exclusion from participation in federal healthcare programs and, although the federal False Claims Act is a civil statute, conduct that results in a False Claims Act violation may also implicate various federal criminal statutes. The government may deem manufacturers to have “caused” the submission of false or fraudulent claims by, for example, providing inaccurate billing or coding information to customers or promoting a product off-label. Claims which include items or services resulting from a violation of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute are false or fraudulent claims for purposes of the False Claims Act. Our future marketing and activities relating to the reporting of wholesaler or estimated retail prices for our products, if approved, the reporting of prices used to calculate Medicaid rebate information and other information affecting federal, state and third-party reimbursement for our products, if approved, and the sale and marketing of our product candidates, are subject to scrutiny under this law.

HIPAA created federal criminal statutes that prohibit among other things, knowingly and willfully executing, or attempting to execute, a scheme to defraud or to obtain, by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations or promises, any money or property owned by, or under the control or custody of, any healthcare benefit program, including private third party payors, knowingly and willfully embezzling or stealing from a healthcare benefit program, willfully obstructing a criminal investigation of a healthcare offense, and knowingly and willfully falsifying, concealing or covering up by trick, scheme or device, a material fact or making any materially false, fictitious or fraudulent statement in connection with the delivery of or payment for healthcare benefits, items or services. Like the federal Anti-Kickback Statute a person or entity does not need to have actual knowledge of the statute or specific intent to violate it in order to have committed a violation.

The civil monetary penalties statute imposes penalties against any person or entity that, among other things, is determined to have presented or caused to be presented a claim to a federal health program that the person knows or should know is for an item or service that was not provided as claimed or is false or fraudulent.

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We may be subject to data privacy and security regulations by both the federal government and the states in which we conduct our business. HIPAA, as amended by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act of 2009 (HITECH), and their implementing regulations, including the Final Omnibus Rule published in January 2013, which imposes requirements on certain covered healthcare providers, health plans, and healthcare clearinghouses, as well as their respective business associates, independent contractors, or agents of health covered entities, that perform services for them that involve the creation, maintenance, receipt, use, or disclosure of, individually identifiable health information relating to the privacy, security, and transmission of individual identifiable health information. Among other things, HITECH makes HIPAA’s security standards directly applicable to business associates, defined as independent contractors or agents of covered entities, which include certain health care providers, health plans, and healthcare clearinghouses, that create, receive or obtain protected health information in connection with providing a service for or on behalf of a covered entity. HITECH also created new tiers of civil monetary penalties, amended HIPAA to make civil and criminal penalties directly applicable to business associates, and gave state attorneys general new authority to file civil actions for damages or injunctions in federal courts to enforce the federal HIPAA laws and seek attorneys' fees and costs associated with pursuing federal civil actions. In addition, there may be additional federal, state, and non-U.S. laws which govern the privacy and security of health and other personal information in certain circumstances, many of which differ from each other in significant ways and may not have the same effect, thus complicating compliance efforts. Failure to comply with these laws, where applicable, can result in the imposition of significant civil and criminal penalties.

In addition, many states in which we operate have laws that protect the privacy and security of sensitive and personal information. Certain state laws may be more stringent or broader in scope, or offer greater individual rights, with respect to sensitive and personal information than federal, international, or other state laws, and such laws may differ from each other, which may complicate compliance efforts. Where state laws are more protective than HIPAA, we must comply with the state laws we are subject to, in addition to HIPAA. In certain cases, it may be necessary to modify our planned operations and procedures to comply with these more stringent state laws. Further, in some cases where we process sensitive and personal information of individuals from numerous states, we may find it necessary to comply with the most stringent state laws applicable to any of the information. California recently enacted the California Consumer Privacy Act, or CCPA, which creates new individual privacy rights for California consumers (as defined in the law) and places increased privacy and security obligations on entities handling personal data of consumers or households. The CCPA will require covered companies to provide certain disclosures to consumers about its data collection, use and sharing practices, and to provide affected California residents with ways to opt-out of certain sales or transfers of personal information. The CCPA went into effect on January 1, 2020, and the California State Attorney General submitted final regulations for review on June 2, 2020, which were finalized and are now effective. The California State Attorney General has commenced enforcement actions against violators as of July 1, 2020. Further, a new California privacy law, the California Privacy Rights Act, or CPRA, was passed by California voters on November 3, 2020. The CPRA will create additional obligations with respect to processing and storing personal information effective January 1, 2023 (with certain provisions having retroactive effect to January 1, 2022). We will continue to monitor developments related to the CPRA and anticipate additional costs and expenses associated with CPRA compliance. Other U.S. states also are considering omnibus privacy legislation and industry organizations regularly adopt and advocate for new standards in these areas. While the CCPA and CPRA contain an exception for certain activities involving PHI under HIPAA, we cannot yet determine the impact the CCPA, CPRA or other such future laws, regulations and standards may have on our business.

Additionally, some observers have noted that the CCPA and CPRA could mark the beginning of a trend toward more stringent privacy legislation in the U.S., which could increase our potential liability and adversely affect our business. Already, in the United States, we have witnessed significant developments at the state level. For example, on March 2, 2021, Virginia enacted the Consumer Data Protection Act, or the CDPA and, on July 8, 2021, Colorado’s governor signed the Colorado Privacy Act, or CPA, into law. The CDPA and the CPA both became effective January 1, 2023. While the CDPA and CPA incorporate many similar concepts of the CCPA and CPRA, there are also several key differences in the scope, application, and enforcement of the law that will change the operational practices of regulated businesses. Moreover, on March 24, 2022, Utah’s governor signed the Utah Consumer Privacy Act, or UCPA, into law. The UCPA will take effect on December 31, 2023. Also, in May 2022, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont signed the Connecticut Data Privacy Act, or CTDPA, into law. The UCPA and CTDPA draw heavily upon their predecessors in Virginia and Colorado. With the CTDPA, Connecticut became the fifth state to enact a comprehensive privacy law.

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A number of other states have proposed new privacy laws, some of which are similar to the above discussed recently passed laws. Such proposed legislation, if enacted, may add additional complexity, variation in requirements, restrictions and potential legal risk, require additional investment of resources in compliance programs, impact strategies and the availability of previously useful data and could result in increased compliance costs and/or changes in business practices and policies. The existence of comprehensive privacy laws in different states in the country would make our compliance obligations more complex and costly and may increase the likelihood that we may be subject to enforcement actions or otherwise incur liability for noncompliance.

Additionally, the federal Physician Payments Sunshine Act, or the Sunshine Act, within the ACA, and its implementing regulations, require that certain manufacturers of drugs, devices, biological and medical supplies for which payment is available under Medicare, Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (with certain exceptions) report annually to CMS information related to certain payments or other transfers of value made or distributed to physicians and teaching hospitals, or to entities or individuals at the request of, or designated on behalf of, physicians, certain other healthcare professionals, and teaching hospitals and to report annually certain ownership and investment interests held by physicians, certain other healthcare professionals, and their immediate family members. Effective January 1, 2022, these reporting obligations extend to include transfers of value made to certain non-physician providers such as physician assistants and nurse practitioners. In addition, many states also govern the reporting of payments or other transfers of value, many of which differ from each other in significant ways, are often not pre-empted, and may have a more prohibitive effect than the Sunshine Act, thus further complicating compliance efforts.

Similar federal, state and foreign fraud and abuse laws and regulations, such as state anti-kickback and false claims laws, may apply to sales or marketing arrangements and claims involving healthcare items or services. Such laws are generally broad and are enforced by various state agencies and private actions. Many U.S. states have adopted laws similar to the federal Anti-Kickback Statute and False Claims Act, and may apply to our business practices, including, but not limited to, research, distribution, sales or marketing arrangements and claims involving healthcare items or services reimbursed by non-governmental payors, including private insurers. In addition, some states have passed laws that require us to comply with the April 2003 Office of Inspector General Compliance Program Guidance for Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and/or the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America’s Code on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals. Additionally, we are subject to state and foreign equivalents of each of the healthcare laws and regulations described above, some of which may be broader in scope and may apply regardless of payor, in addition to items and services reimbursed under Medicaid and other state programs. Some state laws require pharmaceutical companies to comply with the pharmaceutical industry’s voluntary compliance guidelines and the relevant federal government compliance guidance, and require drug manufacturers to report information related to payments and other transfers of value to physicians and other healthcare providers or marketing expenditures. Several states also impose other marketing restrictions or require pharmaceutical companies to make marketing or price disclosures to the state and require the registration of pharmaceutical sales representatives. State and foreign laws, including, for example, the European Union General Data Protection Regulation, which became effective May 2018 also govern the privacy and security of health information in some circumstances, many of which differ from each other in significant ways and often are not preempted by HIPAA, thus complicating compliance efforts. There are ambiguities as to what is required to comply with these state requirements and if we fail to comply with an applicable state law requirement we could be subject to penalties. Finally, there are state and foreign laws governing the privacy and security of health information, many of which differ from each other in significant ways and often are not preempted by HIPAA, thus complicating compliance efforts.

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In order to distribute products commercially, we must comply with state laws that require the registration of manufacturers and wholesale distributors of drug and biological products in a state, including, in certain states, manufacturers and distributors who ship products into the state even if such manufacturers or distributors have no place of business within the state. Several states have enacted legislation requiring pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies to establish marketing compliance programs, file periodic reports with the state, make periodic public disclosures on sales, marketing, pricing, clinical trials and other activities, and/or register their sales representatives, as well as to prohibit pharmacies and other healthcare entities from providing certain physician prescribing data to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies for use in sales and marketing, and to prohibit certain other sales and marketing practices. We must also comply with federal government price reporting laws, which require us to calculate and report complex pricing metrics in an accurate and timely manner to government programs. All of our activities are potentially subject to federal and state consumer protection and unfair competition laws.

The scope and enforcement of each of these laws is uncertain and subject to rapid change in the current environment of healthcare reform, especially in light of the lack of applicable precedent and regulations. Federal and state enforcement bodies have recently increased their scrutiny of interactions between healthcare companies and healthcare providers, which has led to a number of investigations, prosecutions, convictions and settlements in the healthcare industry. It is possible that governmental authorities will conclude that our business practices may not comply with current or future statutes, regulations or case law involving applicable fraud and abuse or other healthcare laws and regulations. If our operations are found to be in violation of any of these laws or any other governmental regulations that may apply to us, we may be subject to significant civil, criminal and administrative penalties, damages, fines, disgorgement, contractual damages, reputational harm, diminished profits and future earnings, individual imprisonment, exclusion of drugs from government funded healthcare programs, such as Medicare and Medicaid, and the curtailment or restructuring of our operations, any of which could adversely affect our ability to operate our business and our financial results. Further, defending against any such actions can be costly and time consuming, and may require significant financial and personnel resources. Therefore, even if we are successful in defending against any such actions that may be brought against us, our business may be impaired. If any of the physicians or other healthcare providers or entities with whom we expect to do business is found to be not in compliance with applicable laws, they may be subject to criminal, civil or administrative sanctions, including exclusions from government funded healthcare programs. Ensuring business arrangements comply with applicable healthcare laws, as well as responding to possible investigations by government authorities, can be time- and resource-consuming and can divert a Company’s attention from the business.

In the U.S., to help patients afford our approved product, we may utilize programs to assist them, including patient assistance programs and co-pay coupon programs for eligible patients. PAPs are regulated by and subject to guidance from CMS OIG. In addition, at least one insurer has directed its network pharmacies to no longer accept co-pay coupons for certain specialty drugs the insurer identified. Our co-pay coupon programs could become the target of similar insurer actions. In addition, in November 2013, the CMS issued guidance to the issuers of qualified health plans sold through the ACA’s marketplaces encouraging such plans to reject patient cost-sharing support from third parties and indicating that the CMS intends to monitor the provision of such support and may take regulatory action to limit it in the future. The CMS subsequently issued a rule requiring individual market qualified health plans to accept third-party premium and cost-sharing payments from certain government-related entities. In September 2014, the OIG of the HHS issued a Special Advisory Bulletin warning manufacturers that they may be subject to sanctions under the federal anti-kickback statute and/or civil monetary penalty laws if they do not take appropriate steps to exclude Part D beneficiaries from using co-pay coupons. Accordingly, companies exclude these Part D beneficiaries from using co-pay coupons.

Current and Future Legislation

In the United States and some foreign jurisdictions, there have been, and likely will continue to be, a number of legislative and regulatory changes and proposed changes regarding the healthcare system directed at broadening the availability of healthcare, improving the quality of healthcare, and containing or lowering the cost of healthcare.

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For example, in March 2010, the ACA was enacted in the United States. The ACA includes measures that have significantly changed, and are expected to continue to significantly change, the way healthcare is financed by both governmental and private insurers. Among the provisions of the ACA of greatest importance to the pharmaceutical industry are that the ACA:

made several changes to the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program, including increasing pharmaceutical manufacturers’ rebate liability by raising the minimum basic Medicaid rebate on most branded prescription drugs to 23.1% of average manufacturer price, or AMP, and adding a new rebate calculation for “line extensions” (i.e., new formulations, such as extended release formulations) of solid oral dosage forms of branded products, as well as potentially impacting their rebate liability by modifying the statutory definition of AMP.
imposed a requirement on manufacturers of branded drugs to provide a 70% (increased pursuant to the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, effective as of 2019) point-of-sale discount off the negotiated price of branded drugs dispensed to Medicare Part D beneficiaries in the coverage gap (i.e., “donut hole”) as a condition for a manufacturer’s outpatient drugs being covered under Medicare Part D.
extended a manufacturer’s Medicaid rebate liability to covered drugs dispensed to individuals who are enrolled in Medicaid managed care organizations.
expanded the entities eligible for discounts under the 340B Drug Discount Program.
established a new methodology by which rebates owed by manufacturers under the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program are calculated for drugs that are inhaled, infused, instilled, implanted, or injected.
imposed an annual, nondeductible fee on any entity that manufactures or imports certain branded prescription drugs, apportioned among these entities according to their market share in certain government healthcare programs.
established a new Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute to oversee, identify priorities in, and conduct comparative clinical effectiveness research, along with funding for such research. The research conducted by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute may affect the market for certain pharmaceutical products. The ACA established the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation within CMS to test innovative payment and service delivery models to lower Medicare and Medicaid spending, potentially including prescription drug spending.

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Since its enactment, there have been numerous judicial, administrative, executive, and legislative challenges to certain aspects of the ACA. On June 17, 2021, the U.S. Supreme Court dismissed the most recent judicial challenge to the ACA brought by several states without specifically ruling on the constitutionality of the ACA. Prior to the Supreme Court’s decision, President Biden issued an executive order to initiate a special enrollment period from February 15, 2021 through August 15, 2021 for purposes of obtaining health insurance coverage through the ACA marketplace. The executive order also instructed certain governmental agencies to review and reconsider their existing policies and rules that limit access to healthcare, including among others, reexamining Medicaid demonstration projects and waiver programs that include work requirements, and policies that create unnecessary barriers to obtaining access to health insurance coverage through Medicaid or the ACA. It is unclear how other healthcare reform measures of the Biden administration or other efforts, if any, to challenge, repeal or replace the ACA will impact our business. Prior to the Biden administration, on October 13, 2017, former President Trump signed an Executive Order which terminated the cost sharing subsidies that reimburse insurers under the ACA. The former Trump administration concluded that cost-sharing reduction, or CSR, payments to insurance companies required under the ACA have not received necessary appropriations from Congress and announced that it will discontinue these payments immediately until those appropriations are made. Several state Attorneys General filed suit to stop the administration from terminating the subsidies, but their request for a restraining order was denied by a federal judge in California on October 25, 2017. On August 14, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled in two separate cases that the federal government is liable for the full amount of unpaid CSRs for the years preceding and including 2017. For CSR claims made by health insurance companies for years 2018 and later, further litigation will be required to determine the amounts due, if any. Further, on June 14, 2018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled that the federal government was not required to pay more than $12 billion in ACA risk corridor payments to third-party payors who argued the payments were owed to them. On April 27, 2020, the United States Supreme Court reversed the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit’s decision and remanded the case to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, concluding the government has an obligation to pay these risk corridor payments under the relevant formula. It is unclear what impact these rulings will have on our business.

In addition, CMS published a final rule that would give states greater flexibility as of 2020 in setting benchmarks for insurers in the individual and small group marketplaces, which may have the effect of relaxing the essential health benefits required under the ACA for plans sold through such marketplaces.

In addition, other legislative and regulatory changes have also been proposed and adopted in the United States since the ACA was enacted:

On August 2, 2011, the U.S. Budget Control Act of 2011, among other things, included aggregate reductions of Medicare payments to providers of 2% per fiscal year. These reductions went into effect on April 1, 2013 and, due to subsequent legislative amendments to the statute, will remain in effect through 2030. Pursuant to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, as well as subsequent legislation, this 2% reduction was suspended from May 1, 2020 through March 31, 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Following the suspension, a 1% payment reduction began April 1, 2022, lasting through June 30, 2022. The 2% payment reduction resumed on July 1, 2022.
On January 2, 2013, the U.S. American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 was signed into law, which, among other things, further reduced Medicare payments to several types of providers.
On April 13, 2017, CMS published a final rule that gives states greater flexibility in setting benchmarks for insurers in the individual and small group marketplaces, which may have the effect of relaxing the essential health benefits required under the ACA for plans sold through such marketplaces.
On May 30, 2018, the Right to Try Act, was signed into law. The law, among other things, provides a federal framework for certain patients to access certain investigational new drug products that have completed a Phase 1 clinical trial and that are undergoing investigation for FDA approval. Under certain circumstances, eligible patients can seek treatment without enrolling in clinical trials and without obtaining FDA permission under the FDA expanded access program. There is no obligation for a pharmaceutical manufacturer to make its drug products available to eligible patients as a result of the Right to Try Act.

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On May 23, 2019, CMS published a final rule to allow Medicare Advantage Plans the option of using step therapy for Part B drugs beginning January 1, 2020.
On December 20, 2019, former President Trump signed into law the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act (H.R. 1865), which repealed the Cadillac tax, the health insurance provider tax, and the medical device excise tax. It is impossible to determine whether similar taxes could be instated in the future.
On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 into law, which eliminates the statutory Medicaid drug rebate cap, currently set at 100% of a drug’s average manufacturer price, for single source and innovator multiple source drugs, beginning January 1, 2024.
In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, or IRA was signed into law. The IRA includes several provisions that will impact our business to varying degrees, including provisions that reduce the out-of-pocket cap for Medicare Part D beneficiaries to $2,000 starting in 2025; impose new manufacturer financial liability on certain drugs in Medicare Part D, allow the U.S. government to negotiate Medicare Part B and Part D price caps for certain high-cost drugs and biologics without generic or biosimilar competition, require companies to pay rebates to Medicare for certain drug prices that increase faster than inflation, and delay the rebate rule that would limit the fees that pharmacy benefit managers can charge. Further under the IRA, orphan drugs are exempted from the Medicare drug price negotiation program, but only if they have one rare disease designation and for which the only approved indication is for that disease or condition. If a product receives multiple rare disease designations or has multiple approved indications, it will not qualify for the orphan drug exemption.

In addition, there have been several changes to the 340B drug pricing program, which imposes ceilings on prices that drug manufacturers can charge for medications sold to certain health care facilities. On December 27, 2018, the District Court for the District of Columbia invalidated a reimbursement formula change under the 340B drug pricing program, and CMS subsequently altered the FYs 2019 and 2018 reimbursement formula on specified covered outpatient drugs, or SCODs. The court ruled this change was not an “adjustment” which was within the Secretary’s discretion to make but was instead a fundamental change in the reimbursement calculation. However, most recently, on July 31, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit overturned the district court’s decision and found that the changes were within the Secretary’s authority. On September 14, 2020, the plaintiffs-appellees filed a Petition for Rehearing En Banc (i.e., before the full court), but was denied on October 16, 2020. Plaintiffs-appellees filed a petition for a writ of certiorari at the Supreme Court on February 10, 2021. On Friday July 2, 2021, the Supreme Court granted the petition. It is unclear how these developments could affect covered hospitals who might purchase our future products and affect the rates we may charge such facilities for our approved products in the future, if any. On June 15, 2022, the Supreme Court unanimously reversed the Court of Appeals’ decision, holding that HHS’s 2018 and 2019 reimbursement rates for 340B hospitals were contrary to the statute and unlawful. We continue to review developments impacting the 340B program.

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Additionally, there has been increasing legislative and enforcement interest in the United States with respect to drug pricing practices. Specifically, there has been heightened governmental scrutiny over the manner in which manufacturers set prices for their marketed products, which has resulted in several U.S. Congressional inquiries and proposed and enacted federal and state legislation designed to, among other things, bring more transparency to drug pricing, reduce the cost of prescription drugs under Medicare, and review the relationship between pricing and manufacturer patient programs. At a federal level, President Biden signed an Executive Order on July 9, 2021 affirming the administration’s policy to (i) support legislative reforms that would lower the prices of prescription drug and biologics, including by allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices, by imposing inflation caps, and, by supporting the development and market entry of lower-cost generic drugs and biosimilars; and (ii) support the enactment of a public health insurance option. Among other things, the Executive Order also directs HHS to provide a report on actions to combat excessive pricing of prescription drugs, enhance the domestic drug supply chain, reduce the price that the Federal government pays for drugs, and address price gouging in the industry; and directs the FDA to work with states and Indian Tribes that propose to develop section 804 Importation Programs in accordance with the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, and the FDA’s implementing regulations. FDA released such implementing regulations on September 24, 2020, which went into effect on November 30, 2020, providing guidance for states to build and submit importation plans for drugs from Canada. On September 25, 2020, CMS stated drugs imported by states under this rule will not be eligible for federal rebates under Section 1927 of the Social Security Act and manufacturers would not report these drugs for “best price” or Average Manufacturer Price purposes. Since these drugs are not considered covered outpatient drugs, CMS further stated it will not publish a National Average Drug Acquisition Cost for these drugs. If implemented, importation of drugs from Canada may materially and adversely affect the price we receive for any of our product candidates. Further, on November 20, 2020 CMS issued an Interim Final Rule implementing the Most Favored Nation, or MFN, Model under which Medicare Part B reimbursement rates would have been be calculated for certain drugs and biologicals based on the lowest price drug manufacturers receive in Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development countries with a similar gross domestic product per capita. However, on December 29, 2021 rescinded the Most Favored Nations rule.

Additionally, on December 2, 2020, HHS published a regulation removing safe harbor protection for price reductions from pharmaceutical manufacturers to plan sponsors under Part D, either directly or through pharmacy benefit managers, unless the price reduction is required by law. The rule also creates a new safe harbor for price reductions reflected at the point-of-sale, as well as a safe harbor for certain fixed fee arrangements between pharmacy benefit managers and manufacturers. Pursuant to court order, the removal and addition of the aforementioned safe harbors were delayed and recent legislation imposed a moratorium on implementation of the rule until January 1, 2026. This deadline was delayed to January 1, 2027 by the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act. The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 further delayed implementation of this rule to January 1, 2032. Further, on December 31, 2020, CMS published a new rule, effective January 1, 2023, requiring manufacturers to ensure the full value of co-pay assistance is passed on to the patient or these dollars will count toward the Average Manufacturer Price and Best Price calculation of the drug. On May 21, 2021, PhRMA sued the HHS in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to stop the implementation of the rule claiming that the rule contradicts federal law surrounding Medicaid rebates. On May 17, 2022, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted PhRMA’s motion for summary judgement invalidating the Medicaid Accumulator Rule. We cannot predict how the implementation of and any further changes to this rule will affect our business. Although a number of these and other proposed measures may require authorization through additional legislation to become effective, and the Biden administration may reverse or otherwise change these measures, both the Biden administration and Congress have indicated that they will continue to seek new legislative measures to control drug costs.

We expect that additional U.S. federal healthcare reform measures will be adopted in the future, any of which could limit the amounts that the U.S. Federal Government will pay for healthcare drugs and services, which could result in reduced demand for our drug candidates or additional pricing pressures.

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Individual states in the United States have also become increasingly active in passing legislation and implementing regulations designed to control pharmaceutical and biological product pricing, including price or patient reimbursement constraints, discounts, restrictions on certain drug access and marketing cost disclosure and transparency measures, and designed to encourage importation from other countries and bulk purchasing. Legally mandated price controls on payment amounts by third-party payors or other restrictions could harm our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects. In addition, regional healthcare authorities and individual hospitals are increasingly using bidding procedures to determine what pharmaceutical products and which suppliers will be included in their prescription drug and other healthcare programs. This could reduce the ultimate demand for our drugs or put pressure on our drug pricing, which could negatively affect our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

We cannot predict what healthcare reform initiatives may be adopted in the future. Further federal, state and foreign legislative and regulatory developments are likely, and we expect ongoing initiatives to increase pressure on drug pricing. Such reforms could have an adverse effect on anticipated revenues from product candidates and may affect our overall financial condition and ability to develop product candidates.

Packaging and Distribution in the United States

If our products, once approved, are made available to authorized users of the Federal Supply Schedule of the General Services Administration, additional laws and requirements apply. Products must meet applicable child-resistant packaging requirements under the U.S. Poison Prevention Packaging Act. Manufacturing, sales, promotion and other activities also are potentially subject to federal and state consumer protection and unfair competition laws.

The distribution of pharmaceutical products is subject to additional requirements and regulations, including extensive record-keeping, licensing, storage and security requirements intended to prevent the unauthorized sale of pharmaceutical products.

The failure to comply with any of these laws or regulatory requirements subjects firms to possible legal or regulatory action. Depending on the circumstances, failure to meet applicable regulatory requirements can result in criminal prosecution, fines or other penalties, injunctions, exclusion from federal healthcare programs, requests for recall, seizure of products, total or partial suspension of production, denial or withdrawal of product approvals, or refusal to allow a firm to enter into supply contracts, including government contracts. Any action against us for violation of these laws, even if we successfully defend against it, could cause us to incur significant legal expenses and divert our management’s attention from the operation of our business. Prohibitions or restrictions on sales or withdrawal of future products marketed by us could materially affect our business in an adverse way.

Changes in regulations, statutes or the interpretation of existing regulations could impact our business in the future by requiring, for example: (i) changes to our manufacturing arrangements; (ii) additions or modifications to product labeling; (iii) the recall or discontinuation of our potential products; or (iv) additional record-keeping requirements. If any such changes were to be imposed, they could adversely affect the operation of our business.

Other U.S. Environmental, Health and Safety Laws and Regulations

We may be subject to numerous environmental, health and safety laws and regulations, including those governing laboratory procedures and the handling, use, storage, treatment and disposal of hazardous materials and wastes. From time to time and in the future, our operations may involve the use of hazardous and flammable materials, including chemicals and biological materials, and may also produce hazardous waste products. Even if we contract with third parties for the disposal of these materials and waste products, we cannot completely eliminate the risk of contamination or injury resulting from these materials. In the event of contamination or injury resulting from the use or disposal of our hazardous materials, we could be held liable for any resulting damages, and any liability could exceed our resources. We also could incur significant costs associated with civil or criminal fines and penalties for failure to comply with such laws and regulations.

We maintain workers’ compensation insurance to cover us for costs and expenses we may incur due to injuries to our employees, but this insurance may not provide adequate coverage against potential liabilities. However, we do not maintain insurance for environmental liability or toxic tort claims that may be asserted against us.

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In addition, we may incur substantial costs in order to comply with current or future environmental, health and safety laws and regulations. Current or future environmental laws and regulations may impair our research, development or production efforts. In addition, failure to comply with these laws and regulations may result in substantial fines, penalties or other sanctions.

U.S. Patent Term Extension and Marketing Exclusivity

Depending upon the timing, duration and specifics of FDA approval of a drug or biologic, some U.S. patents may be eligible for limited patent term extension under the Drug Price Competition and Patent Term Restoration Act of 1984, commonly referred to as the Hatch-Waxman Act. The Hatch-Waxman Act permits extension of a patent term of up to five years beyond the normal expiration date of the patent as compensation for patent term lost during the FDA regulatory review process. Patent term extension, however, cannot extend the remaining term of a patent beyond a total of 14 years from the product’s approval date and only those claims covering such approved drug product, a method for using it or a method for manufacturing it may be extended. Only one patent applicable to an approved drug is eligible for the extension and the application for the extension must be submitted prior to the expiration of the patent. The USPTO, in consultation with the FDA, reviews and approves the application for any patent term extension. An NDA or BLA applicant may apply for extension of patent term for its currently owned or licensed patents to add patent life beyond its current expiration date, depending on the expected length of the clinical trials and other factors involved in the filing of the relevant NDA or BLA.

Marketing exclusivity provisions under the FDCA also can delay the submission or the approval of certain applications. The FDCA provides a five-year period of non-patent marketing exclusivity within the United States to the first applicant to gain approval of an NDA for a new chemical entity. A drug is a new chemical entity if the FDA has not previously approved any other new drug containing the same active moiety, which is the molecule or ion responsible for the action of the drug substance. During the exclusivity period, the FDA may not accept for review an ANDA, or a 505(b)(2) NDA submitted by another Company for another version of such drug where the applicant does not own or have a legal right of reference to all the data required for approval. However, an application may be submitted after four years if it contains a certification of patent invalidity or non-infringement. The FDCA also provides three years of marketing exclusivity for an NDA, 505(b)(2) NDA or supplement to an existing NDA if new clinical investigations, other than bioavailability studies, that were conducted or sponsored by the applicant are deemed by the FDA to be essential to the approval of the application, for example, new indications, dosages or strengths of an existing drug. This three-year exclusivity covers only the conditions of use associated with the new clinical investigations and does not prohibit the FDA from approving ANDAs for drugs containing the original active agent. Five-year and three-year exclusivity will not delay the submission or approval of a full NDA. However, an applicant submitting a full NDA would be required to conduct or obtain a right of reference to all of the preclinical studies and adequate and well-controlled clinical trials necessary to demonstrate safety and effectiveness.

European Union Drug Development

In the European Union or EU, our future products also may be subject to extensive regulatory requirements. As in the United States, medicinal products can be marketed only if a marketing authorization from the competent regulatory agencies has been obtained.

Similar to the United States, the various phases of preclinical and clinical research in the European Union are subject to significant regulatory controls.

In April 2014, the EU adopted the new Clinical Trials Regulation (EU) No 536/2014, or EU Clinical Trials Regulation, which replaced the Clinical Trials Directive 2001/20/EC, or Directive, on January 31, 2022. The transitory provisions of the new EU Clinical Trials Regulation provided that, by January 31, 2025, all ongoing clinical trials must have transitioned to the new EU Clinical Trials Regulation.

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The new EU Clinical Trials Regulation overhauled the previous system of approvals for clinical trials in the EU. Specifically, the new EU Clinical Trials Regulation, which is directly applicable in all Member States (meaning no national implementing legislation in each EU Member State is required), aims at simplifying and streamlining the approval of clinical trials in the EU. For instance, it provides for a streamlined application procedure via a single entry point (through the Clinical Trials Information Systems) and strictly defined deadlines for the assessment of clinical trial applications.

European Union Drug Review and Approval

In the EU, medicinal products can only be commercialized after obtaining a marketing authorization, or MA. There are two types of marketing authorizations.

The centralized MA is issued by the European Commission through the centralized procedure, based on the opinion of the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use, or CHMP, of the EMA, and is valid throughout the entire territory of the EU, and in the additional Member States of the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway). The centralized procedure is mandatory for certain types of products, including medicines produced by biotechnological processes, products designated as orphan medicinal products, advanced-therapy medicinal products (gene-therapy, somatic cell-therapy or tissue-engineered medicines) and medicinal products containing a new active substance indicated for the treatment of HIV, AIDS, cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, diabetes, auto-immune and other immune dysfunctions and viral diseases. The centralized procedure is optional for products containing a new active substance not yet authorized in the EU, or for products that constitute a significant therapeutic, scientific or technical innovation or which are in the interest of public health in the EU.
Under the centralized procedure, the EMA’s Committee for Medicinal Products for Human use, or CHMP, is responsible for conducting the initial assessment of a product and for several post-authorization and maintenance activities, such as the assessment of modifications or extensions to an existing MA. Under the centralized procedure in the EU, the maximum timeframe for the evaluation of a marketing authorization application, or MAA, by the EMA is 210 days, excluding clock stops, when additional written or oral information is to be provided by the applicant in response to questions asked by the CHMP. Clock stops may extend the timeframe of evaluation of an MAA considerably beyond 210 days. Where the CHMP gives a positive opinion, it provides the opinion together with supporting documentation to the European Commission, who makes the final decision to grant an MA, which is issued within 67 days of receipt of the EMA’s recommendation. Accelerated assessment might be granted by the CHMP in exceptional cases, when a medicinal product is expected to be of major public health interest, particularly from the point of view of therapeutic innovation. If the CHMP accepts such request, the time limit of 210 days will be reduced to 150 days, excluding clock stops, but it is possible that the CHMP may revert to the standard time limit for the centralized procedure if it determines that the application is no longer appropriate to conduct an accelerated assessment.
National MAs, which are issued by the competent authorities of the Member States of the EU and only cover their respective territory, are available for products not falling within the mandatory scope of the centralized procedure. Where a product has already been authorized for marketing in a Member State of the EU, this national MA can be recognized in another Member State through the mutual recognition procedure. If the product has not received a national MA in any Member State at the time of application, it can be approved simultaneously in various Member States through the decentralized procedure. Under the decentralized procedure an identical dossier is submitted to the competent authorities of each of the Member States in which the MA is sought, one of which is selected by the applicant as the Reference Member State, or RMS. The competent authority of the RMS prepares a draft assessment report, a draft summary of the product characteristics, or SmPC, and a draft of the labeling and package leaflet, which are sent to the other Member States (referred to as the Concerned Member States) for their approval. If the Concerned Member States raise no objections, based on a potential serious risk to public health, to the assessment, SmPC, labeling, or packaging proposed by the RMS, the product is subsequently granted a national MA in all the Member States (i.e., in the RMS and the Concerned Member States).

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Under the above described procedures, before granting the MA, the EMA or the competent authorities of the Member States of the EU make an assessment of the risk-benefit balance of the product on the basis of scientific criteria concerning its quality, safety and efficacy.

Now that the United Kingdom (which comprises Great Britain and Northern Ireland) has left the European Union, Great Britain is no longer covered by centralized MAs (under the Northern Ireland Protocol, centralized MAs continue to be recognized in Northern Ireland). All medicinal products with a current centralized MA were automatically converted to Great Britain MAs on January, 1 2021. For a period of three years from January 1, 2021, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, or MHRA, the UK medicines regulator, may rely on a decision taken by the European Commission on the approval of a new MA in the centralized procedure, in order to more quickly grant a new Great Britain MA. A separate application will, however, still be required. On January 24, 2023, the MHRA announced that a new international recognition framework will be put in place from January 1, 2024, which will have regard to decisions on the approval of MAs made by the European Medicines Agency and certain other regulators. The MHRA also has the power to have regard to MAs approved in EU Member States through decentralized or mutual recognition procedures with a view to more quickly granting an MA in the United Kingdom or Great Britain.

European Union New Chemical Entity Exclusivity

In the EU, innovative medicinal products approved on the basis of a complete and independent data package qualify for eight years of data exclusivity upon marketing authorization and an additional two years of market exclusivity. The data exclusivity, if granted, prevents generic or biosimilar applicants from referencing the innovator’s preclinical and clinical trial data contained in the dossier of the reference product when applying for a generic or biosimilar MA in the EU, during a period of eight years from the date on which the reference product was first authorized in the EU. During the additional two-year period of market exclusivity, a generic or biosimilar MAA can be submitted, and the innovator’s data may be referenced, but no generic or biosimilar product can be placed on the EU market until the expiration of the market exclusivity. The overall ten-year period will be extended to a maximum of 11 years if, during the first eight years of those ten years, the marketing authorization holder obtains an authorization for one or more new therapeutic indications which, during the scientific evaluation prior to their authorization, are determined to bring a significant clinical benefit in comparison with currently approved therapies. There is no guarantee that a product will be considered by the EMA to be an innovative medicinal product, and products may not qualify for data exclusivity. Even if a product is considered to be an innovative medicinal product so that the innovator gains the prescribed period of data exclusivity, however, another Company could nevertheless also market another version of the product if such Company obtained an MA based on an MAA with a complete and independent data package of pharmaceutical tests, preclinical tests and clinical trials.

European Union Orphan Designation and Exclusivity

In the EU, the EMA’s Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products grants an orphan designation in respect of a product if its sponsor can establish that: (1) the product is intended for the diagnosis, prevention or treatment of a life-threatening or chronically debilitating condition; (2) either (i) such condition affects no more than five in 10,000 persons in the EU when the application is made, or (ii) it is unlikely that the product, without the benefits derived from orphan status, would generate sufficient return in the EU to justify the necessary investment in its development; and (3) there must be no satisfactory method of diagnosis, prevention or treatment of such condition authorized for marketing in the EU, or, if such a method exists, the product would be of significant benefit to those affected by that condition.

 

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In the EU, orphan designation entitles a party to financial incentives such as reduction of fees or fee waivers and ten years of market exclusivity is granted following grant of a marketing authorization. During this market exclusivity period, neither the EMA nor the European Commission nor any of the competent authorities in the EU Members States can accept an application or grant a marketing authorization for a “similar medicinal product.” A “similar medicinal product” is defined as a medicinal product containing a similar active substance or substances as contained in an authorized orphan medicinal product, and which is intended for the same therapeutic indication. This period may be reduced to six years if the orphan designation criteria are no longer met, including where it is shown that the product is sufficiently profitable not to justify maintenance of market exclusivity. Market exclusivity may also be revoked in very select cases, such as if (i) it is established that a similar medicinal product is safer, more effective or otherwise clinically superior to the authorized product; (ii) the marketing authorization holder consents to such revocation; or (iii) the marketing authorization holder cannot supply enough orphan medicinal product. Orphan designation must be requested before submitting an application for marketing approval. Orphan designation does not convey any advantage in, or shorten the duration of, the regulatory review and approval process.

Since January 1, 2021, a separate process for orphan designation has applied in Great Britain. There is now no pre-marketing authorization orphan designation (as there is in the EU) in Great Britain and the application for orphan designation will be reviewed by the MHRA at the time of an MAA for a UK or Great Britain MA. The criteria for orphan designation are the same as in the EU, save that they apply to Great Britain only (e.g., there must be no satisfactory method of diagnosis, prevention or treatment of the condition concerned in Great Britain, as opposed to the EU).

European Pediatric Investigation Plan

In the EU, MAAs for new medicinal products have to include the results of studies conducted in the pediatric population, in compliance with a pediatric investigation plan, or PIP, agreed with the EMA’s Pediatric Committee, or PDCO, unless the EMA has granted a product-specific waiver, a class waiver, or a deferral for one or more of the measures included in the PIP. This requirement also applies when a Company wants to add a new indication, pharmaceutical form or route of administration for a medicine that is already authorized. The PIP sets out the timing and measures proposed to generate data to support a pediatric indication of the drug for which marketing authorization is being sought. The PDCO can grant a deferral of the obligation to implement some or all of the measures of the PIP until there are sufficient data to demonstrate the efficacy and safety of the product in adults. Further, the obligation to provide pediatric clinical trial data can be waived by the PDCO when this data is not needed or appropriate because the product is likely to be ineffective or unsafe in children, the disease or condition for which the product is intended occurs only in adult populations, or when the product does not represent a significant therapeutic benefit over existing treatments for pediatric patients. If an MA is obtained and trial results are included in the product information, even when negative, the product is eligible for six months’ supplementary protection certificate extension. In the case of orphan medicinal products, a two year extension of the orphan market exclusivity may be available. This pediatric reward is subject to specific conditions and is not automatically available when data in compliance with the PIP are developed and submitted.

Regulatory Requirements After a Marketing Authorization has been Obtained

If authorization for a medicinal product in the EU is obtained, the holder of the MA is required to comply with a range of requirements applicable to the manufacturing, marketing, promotion, and sale of medicinal products. These include:

Compliance with the EU’s stringent pharmacovigilance or safety reporting rules must be ensured. These rules can impose post-authorization studies and additional monitoring obligations.
The manufacturing of authorized medicinal products, for which a separate manufacturer’s license is mandatory, must also be conducted in strict compliance with the applicable EU laws, regulations and guidance, including Directive 2001/83/EC, Directive 2003/94/EC, Regulation (EC) No 726/2004 and the European Commission Guidelines for Good Manufacturing Practice. These requirements include compliance with EU cGMP standards when manufacturing medicinal products and active pharmaceutical ingredients, including the manufacture of active pharmaceutical ingredients outside of the EU with the intention to import the active pharmaceutical ingredients into the EU.

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Much like the Anti-Kickback Statue prohibition in the United States, the provision of benefits or advantages to physicians to induce or encourage the prescription, recommendation, endorsement, purchase, supply, order or use of medicinal products is also prohibited in the European Union. The provision of benefits or advantages to induce or reward improper performance generally is governed by the national anti-bribery laws of the European Union Member States, and the Bribery Act 2010 in the UK. Infringement of these laws could result in substantial fines and imprisonment. EU Directive 2001/83/EC, which is the EU Directive governing medicinal products for human use, further provides that, where medicinal products are being promoted to persons qualified to prescribe or supply them, no gifts, pecuniary advantages or benefits in kind may be supplied, offered or promised to such persons unless they are inexpensive and relevant to the practice of medicine or pharmacy. This provision has been transposed into the Human Medicines Regulations 2012 and so remains applicable in the UK despite its departure from the EU. Payments made to physicians in certain EU Member States must be publicly disclosed. Moreover, agreements with physicians often must be the subject of prior notification and approval by the physician’s employer, his or her competent professional organization and/or the regulatory authorities of the individual EU Member States. These requirements are provided in the national laws, industry codes or professional codes of conduct, applicable in the EU Member States. Failure to comply with these requirements could result in reputational risk, public reprimands, administrative penalties, fines or imprisonment.

The aforementioned EU rules are generally applicable in the European Economic Area, or EEA, which consists of the EU Member States, plus Norway, Liechtenstein, and Iceland.

Brexit and the Regulatory Framework in the United Kingdom

The UK formally left the EU on January 31, 2020, and the EU and the UK have concluded a trade and cooperation agreement, or TCA, which was provisionally applicable since January 1, 2021 and has been formally applicable since May 1, 2021. The TCA includes specific provisions concerning pharmaceuticals, which include the mutual recognition of GMP, inspections of manufacturing facilities for medicinal products and GMP documents issued, but does not foresee wholesale mutual recognition of UK and EU pharmaceutical regulations. At present, Great Britain has implemented EU legislation on the marketing, promotion and sale of medicinal products through the Human Medicines Regulations 2012 (as amended) (under the Northern Ireland Protocol, the EU regulatory framework will continue to apply in Northern Ireland). Except in respect of the new EU Clinical Trials Regulation, the regulatory regime in Great Britain therefore in many ways aligns with current EU medicines regulations, however it is possible that these regimes will diverge more significantly in the future now that Great Britain’s regulatory system is independent from the EU and the TCA does not provide for mutual recognition of UK and EU pharmaceutical legislation.

 

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European Data Collection

The collection and use of personal health data in the EEA is governed by the General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR or EU GDPR, which became effective May 25, 2018. The GDPR applies to any Company established in the EEA and to companies established outside the EEA that process personal data in connection with the offering of goods or services to data subjects in the EEA or the monitoring of the behavior of data subjects in the EEA. The GDPR enhances data protection obligations for data controllers of personal data, including stringent requirements relating to the consent of data subjects, expanded disclosures about how personal data is used, requirements to conduct privacy impact assessments for “high risk” processing, limitations on retention of personal data, mandatory data breach notification and “privacy by design” requirements, and creates direct obligations on service providers acting as data processors. The GDPR also imposes strict rules on the transfer of personal data outside of the EEA to countries that do not ensure an adequate level of protection, like the United States. Failure to comply with the requirements of the GDPR and the related national data protection laws of the EEA Member States may result in fines up to €20 million or 4% of a company’s global annual revenues for the preceding financial year, whichever is higher. Moreover, the GDPR grants data subjects the right to claim material and non-material damages resulting from infringement of the GDPR. Given the breadth and depth of changes in data protection obligations, maintaining compliance with the GDPR, will require significant time, resources and expense, and we may be required to put in place additional mechanisms ensuring compliance with the new data protection rules. This may be onerous and adversely affect our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

In addition, further to the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union on January 31, 2020, the GDPR ceased to apply in the United Kingdom at the end of the transition period on December 31, 2020. However, as of January 1, 2021, the United Kingdom’s European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 incorporated the GDPR (as it existed on December 31, 2020 but subject to certain UK specific amendments) into UK law, referred to as the UK GDPR. The UK GDPR and the UK Data Protection Act 2018 set out the United Kingdom’s data protection regime, which is independent from but aligned to the European Union’s data protection regime. The UK Government has announced plans to reform its data protection legal framework in the Data Reform Bill, but those have been put on hold. Non-compliance with the UK GDPR may result in monetary penalties of up to £17.5 million or 4% of worldwide revenue, whichever is higher.

The UK GDPR includes restrictions on cross-border data transfers. Adequate safeguards must be implemented to enable the transfer of personal data outside of the EU or the U.K., in particular to the U.S., in compliance with EU and UK data protection laws. On June 4, 2021, the European Commission, or EC, issued new forms of standard contractual clauses for data transfers from controllers or processors in the EEA (or otherwise subject to the EU’s GDPR) to controllers or processors established outside the EEA (and not subject to the EU GDPR). The new standard contractual clauses replace the standard contractual clauses that were adopted previously under the Data Protection Directive. The UK is not subject to the EC’s new standard contractual clauses but has published its own version of standard clauses, referred to as “International Data Transfer Agreement” which entered into force on March 21, 2022 and enables transfers originating from the UK. Transfers made pursuant to these new mechanisms need to be assessed on a case-by-case basis to ensure the law in the recipient country provides “essentially equivalent” protections to safeguard the transferred personal data as the EEA, and businesses are required to adopt supplementary measures if such standard is not met. We will be required to implement these new safeguards when conducting restricted data transfers under the UK GDPR and doing so will require significant effort and cost.

Although the UK is regarded as a third country under the European Union’s GDPR, the European Commission has now issued a decision recognizing the UK as providing adequate protection under the EU GDPR and, therefore, transfers of personal data originating in the EU to the UK remain unrestricted. Like the EU GDPR, the UK GDPR restricts personal data transfers outside the United Kingdom to countries not regarded by the United Kingdom as providing adequate protection. The UK government has confirmed that personal data transfers from the United Kingdom to the EEA remain free flowing.

 

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Rest of the World Regulation

 

For other countries outside of the European Union and the United States, such as countries in Eastern Europe, Latin America or Asia, the requirements governing the conduct of clinical trials, product licensing, pricing and reimbursement vary from country to country. Additionally, the clinical trials must be conducted in accordance with GCP requirements and the applicable regulatory requirements and the ethical principles that have their origin in the Declaration of Helsinki.

 

If we fail to comply with applicable foreign regulatory requirements, we may be subject to, among other things, fines, suspension or withdrawal of regulatory approvals, product recalls, seizure of products, operating restrictions and criminal prosecution.

Additional Laws and Regulations Governing International Operations

If we further expand our operations outside of the United States, we must dedicate additional resources to comply with numerous laws and regulations in each jurisdiction in which we plan to operate. The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, or FCPA, prohibits any U.S. individual or business from paying, offering, authorizing payment or offering of anything of value, directly or indirectly, to any foreign official, political party or candidate for the purpose of influencing any act or decision of the foreign entity in order to assist the individual or business in obtaining or retaining business. The FCPA also obligates companies whose securities are listed in the United States to comply with certain accounting provisions requiring the company to maintain books and records that accurately and fairly reflect all transactions of the corporation, including international subsidiaries, and to devise and maintain an adequate system of internal accounting controls for international operations.

Compliance with the FCPA is expensive and difficult, particularly in countries in which corruption is a recognized problem. In addition, the FCPA presents particular challenges in the pharmaceutical industry, because, in many countries, hospitals are operated by the government, and doctors and other hospital employees are considered foreign officials. Certain payments to hospitals in connection with clinical trials and other work have been deemed to be improper payments to government officials and have led to FCPA enforcement actions.

Various laws, regulations and executive orders also restrict the use and dissemination outside of the United States, or the sharing with certain non-U.S. nationals, of information classified for national security purposes, as well as certain products and technical data relating to those products. If we expand our presence outside of the United States, it will require us to dedicate additional resources to comply with these laws, and these laws may preclude us from developing, manufacturing, or selling certain product candidates outside of the United States, which could limit our growth potential and increase our development costs.

The failure to comply with laws governing international business practices may result in substantial civil and criminal penalties and suspension or debarment from government contracting. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC, also may suspend or bar issuers from trading securities on U.S. exchanges for violations of the FCPA’s accounting provisions.

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Coverage and Reimbursement

Successful commercialization of new drug products depends in part on the extent to which reimbursement for those drug products will be available from government health administration authorities, private health insurers, and other organizations. In the United States and markets in other countries, patients generally rely on third-party payors to reimburse all or part of the costs associated with their treatment. Adequate coverage and reimbursement from governmental healthcare programs, such as Medicare and Medicaid, and commercial payors is critical to new product acceptance. Our ability to successfully commercialize our product candidates will depend in part on the extent to which coverage and adequate reimbursement for these products and related treatments will be available from government health administration authorities, private health insurers and other organizations. Even if coverage is provided, the approved reimbursement amount may not be high enough to allow us to establish or maintain pricing sufficient to realize a sufficient return on our investment. Government authorities and third-party payors, such as private health insurers and health maintenance organizations, decide which medications they will pay for and establish reimbursement levels. Government authorities and third-party payors, such as private health insurers and health maintenance organizations, decide which drug products they will pay for and establish reimbursement levels. The availability and extent of reimbursement by governmental and private payors is essential for most patients to be able to afford a drug product. Sales of drug products depend substantially, both domestically and abroad, on the extent to which the costs of drugs products are paid for by health maintenance, managed care, pharmacy benefit and similar healthcare management organizations, or reimbursed by government health administration authorities, private health coverage insurers and other third-party payors.

A primary trend in the U.S. healthcare industry and elsewhere is cost containment. Government authorities and third-party payors have attempted to control costs by limiting coverage and the amount of reimbursement for particular drug products. In many countries, the prices of drug products are subject to varying price control mechanisms as part of national health systems. In general, the prices of drug products under such systems are substantially lower than in the United States. Other countries allow companies to fix their own prices for drug products, but monitor and control company profits. Accordingly, in markets outside the United States, the reimbursement for drug products may be reduced compared with the United States.

There is also significant uncertainty related to the insurance coverage and reimbursement of newly approved products and coverage may be more limited than the purposes for which the medicine is approved by the FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authorities. In the United States, the principal decisions about reimbursement for new drug products are typically made by CMS, an agency within the HHS. CMS decides whether and to what extent a new drug product will be covered and reimbursed under Medicare, and private payors tend to follow CMS to a substantial degree. However, no uniform policy of coverage and reimbursement for drug products exists among third-party payors and coverage and reimbursement levels for drug products can differ significantly from payor to payor. Factors payors consider in determining reimbursement are based on whether the product is:

a covered benefit under its health plan;
safe, effective and medically necessary;
appropriate for the specific patient;
cost-effective; and
neither experimental nor investigational.

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Third-party payors may limit coverage to specific products on an approved list or formulary, which might not include all of the FDA-approved products for a particular indication. Also, third-party payors may refuse to include a particular branded drug on their formularies or otherwise restrict patient access to a branded drug when a less costly generic equivalent or another alternative is available. Net prices for drugs may be reduced by mandatory discounts or rebates required by government healthcare programs or private payors and by any future relaxation of laws that presently restrict imports of drugs from countries where they may be sold at lower prices than in the United States. Third-party payors are increasingly challenging the prices charged for medical products and services, examining the medical necessity, and reviewing the cost-effectiveness of medical products and services and imposing controls to manage costs. We cannot be sure that reimbursement will be available for any product candidate that we commercialize and, if reimbursement is available, the level of reimbursement. In addition, many pharmaceutical manufacturers must calculate and report certain price reporting metrics to the government, such as average sales price, or ASP, and best price. Penalties may apply in some cases when such metrics are not submitted accurately and timely. Further, these prices for drugs may be reduced by mandatory discounts or rebates required by government healthcare programs.

The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, or the MMA, established the Medicare Part D program to provide a voluntary prescription drug benefit to Medicare beneficiaries. Under Part D, Medicare beneficiaries may enroll in prescription drug plans offered by private entities that provide coverage of outpatient prescription drugs. Unlike Medicare Parts A and B, Part D coverage is not standardized. Part D prescription drug plan sponsors are not required to pay for all covered Part D drugs, and each drug plan can develop its own drug formulary that identifies which drugs it will cover and at what tier or level. While all Medicare drug plans must give at least a standard level of coverage set by Medicare, Part D prescription drug plan sponsors are not required to pay for all covered Part D drugs, and each drug plan can develop its own drug formulary that identifies which drugs it will cover and at what tier or level. However, Part D prescription drug formularies must include drugs within each therapeutic category and class of covered Part D drugs, though not necessarily all the drugs in each category or class. Any formulary used by a Part D prescription drug plan must be developed and reviewed by a pharmacy and therapeutic committee. Government payment for some of the costs of prescription drugs may increase demand for drugs for which we obtain marketing approval. Any negotiated prices for any of our future products covered by a Part D prescription drug plan will likely be lower than the prices we might otherwise obtain. Moreover, while the MMA applies only to drug benefits for Medicare beneficiaries, private payors often follow Medicare coverage policy and payment limitations in setting their own payment rates. Any reduction in payment that results from the MMA may result in a similar reduction in payments from non-governmental payors.

For a drug product to receive federal reimbursement under the Medicaid or Medicare Part B programs or to be sold directly to U.S. government agencies, the manufacturer must extend discounts to entities eligible to participate in the 340B drug pricing program. The required 340B discount on a given product is calculated based on the average manufacturer price, or AMP, and Medicaid rebate amounts reported by the manufacturer. As of 2010, the ACA expanded the types of entities eligible to receive discounted 340B pricing, although under the current state of the law these newly eligible entities (with the exception of children’s hospitals) will not be eligible to receive discounted 340B pricing on orphan drugs. As 340B drug pricing is determined based on AMP and Medicaid rebate data, the revisions to the Medicaid rebate formula and AMP definition described above could cause the required 340B discount to increase. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provides funding for the federal government to compare the effectiveness of different treatments for the same illness.

The plan for the research was published in 2012 by the Department of HHS, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the National Institutes for Health, and periodic reports on the status of the research and related expenditures are made to Congress. Although the results of the comparative effectiveness studies are not intended to mandate coverage policies for public or private payors, it is not clear what effect, if any, the research will have on the sales of our drug candidates, if any such drug or the condition that they are intended to treat are the subject of a trial. It is also possible that comparative effectiveness research demonstrating benefits in a competitor’s drug could adversely affect the sales of our drug candidate. If third-party payors do not consider our drugs to be cost-effective compared to other available therapies, they may not cover our drugs after approval as a benefit under their plans or, if they do, the level of payment may not be sufficient to allow us to sell our drugs on a profitable basis.

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These laws, and future state and federal healthcare reform measures may be adopted in the future, any of which may result in additional reductions in Medicare and other healthcare funding and otherwise affect the prices we may obtain for any product candidates for which we may obtain regulatory approval or the frequency with which any such product candidate is prescribed or used.

Outside of the United States, the pricing of pharmaceutical products and medical devices is subject to governmental control in many countries. For example, in the European Union, pricing and reimbursement schemes vary widely from country to country. Some Member States provide that products may be marketed only after the proposed pricing has been approved. Some Member States may require the completion of additional studies that compare the cost effectiveness of a particular therapy to currently available therapies or so-called health technology assessments, in order to obtain reimbursement or pricing approval. A Member State may approve a specific price for the medicinal product or it may instead adopt a system of direct or indirect controls on the profitability of the company placing the medicinal product on the market. Member States may allow companies to fix their own prices for products, but monitor and control product volumes and issue guidance to physicians to limit prescriptions. Efforts to control prices and utilization of pharmaceutical products and medical devices will likely continue as countries attempt to manage healthcare expenditures. There can be no assurance that any country that has price controls or reimbursement limitations for pharmaceutical products will allow favorable reimbursement and pricing arrangements for any of our product candidates. Historically, products launched in the European Union do not follow price structures of the U.S. and generally prices tend to be significantly lower.

 

Human Capital Management

Our human capital philosophy relies on attracting and retaining team members who consistently demonstrate top performance. Our culture and our approach to talent reinforces this philosophy, including recruiting, professional development, performance management and total rewards. We have provided below additional details on some of our core human resources processes.

As of December 31, 2022, we had 392 full-time employees and four part-time employees. Of these, 297 focus on driving forward research and development programs, either directly or through our affiliates, and 99 work across our affiliates to provide strategic business development, finance and executive leadership expertise, as well as general and administrative services generally across our affiliates. We have never had a work stoppage, and none of our employees is represented by a labor organization or under any collective-bargaining arrangements. We consider our employee relations to be good.

Recruiting

In 2020, we established a talent acquisition capability to support our affiliates in hiring the right talent at the right time. Our team of experienced talent acquisition professionals works closely with hiring managers to understand the required skills and capabilities for an open role, and then supports the interview process and evaluation of candidates. We strive to hire top talent, and therefore need a high-quality recruiting process and candidate experience. We endeavor to fill every role with the most qualified candidate possible, which sometimes requires partnership with an external recruitment agency. We are consistently looking at new opportunities and avenues to recruit talented individuals to work at BridgeBio.

The talent acquisition team’s focus in 2023 is to meet the hiring needs across BridgeBio and our affiliates. We recognize that our current and potential future team members have options for employment opportunities, including with other biotech and pharma companies, research and academic institutions, government entities, and consulting and investment firms. To attract and retain top performing team members, we focus on creating an environment that allows for autonomy, professional growth and impact while also offering a competitive total rewards package.

Professional Development and Performance Management

We invest in the professional development of our team members through regular feedback and guidance, as well as targeted learning and development opportunities to meet demonstrated needs. We established a set of five core attributes that we expect every BridgeBio team member to demonstrate while performing in their roles: Patient Champion, Entrepreneurial Operator, Truth Seeker, Inspires Excellence and High-Quality Executor.

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BridgeBio conducts semi-annual performance review processes for all team members to evaluate performance and provide feedback against these attributes. The feedback focuses on strengths and opportunities for improvement to enable the professional development of all team members. At the end of the year, the performance review includes self, peer, and manager feedback and also includes a formal rating and informs compensation decisions, including performance bonus, salary adjustments and promotions.

Core Values and Ethics

Millions worldwide are afflicted with genetic diseases, but small patient populations and industry reluctance to conduct early-stage development means that for many, treatments have not been forthcoming. We are committed to bridging this gap: between business case and scientific possibility, between patient and hope. This starts with our first core value: to put patients first. We also strive to think independently. Our goal is to not simply accept the ideas and opinions of others as fact, but instead to ask “why?” and “why not?” We endeavor to bring a rigorous, first-principles mindset to each problem that we take on. We encourage all of our team members to speak up when they have an idea or feedback to share, taking pride in a culture that is radically transparent when it comes to debating ideas. A commitment to independent thinking requires us to consider the ideas of others and to adopt them if they prove best. We strive to maintain a culture where any idea is worthy of both consideration and testing. We know that every minute counts. Our decentralized model strives to deliver treatments from discovery to patients as fast as humanly possible by utilizing focused teams of experts for each asset. Big decisions can be taken by people best-equipped to understand them, without wasting time on unnecessary cycles. And we let Science speak. Our model was designed to promote the rational assessment of our programs. Decisions about a program’s fate are driven by its performance against a set of objective criteria, giving each potential medicine’s scientific merits the last word. All employees are responsible for upholding these values and the BridgeBio Code of Business Conduct and Ethics, which forms the foundation of our policies and practices.

Total Rewards

 

To attract and retain top talent, we offer a competitive total rewards package. We peg total direct compensation at the upper end of market. We link a portion of every employee’s compensation to performance through a performance bonus program. To create a sense of ownership and align employee incentives with our long-term success, we offer eligible employees equity ownership in the company through stock option or restricted stock unit grants and our employee stock purchase plan. We also designed a program to incentivize affiliate-level employees to achieve specific milestones at core value-inflection points, such as IND or NDA approval.

 

We focus our benefits offering on areas critical to keeping our employees and their immediate families healthy and productive. We offer physical and mental health benefits to all employees who work at least 30 hours per week, on average. We have a flexible paid time off policy to empower team members to take the time they need, when they need it.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

 

We believe that a diverse, equitable and inclusive culture is critical to BridgeBio’s success. We are proud to promote unique voices within and outside our organization, and are eager to learn from others’ experiences, as we know that a diverse and inclusive workforce is a business imperative and key to our long-term success.

 

In 2022, our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, or DE&I, Executive & Steering Committees continued their impactful work in carrying out the DE&I vision for BridgeBio. The DE&I sub-committees also designed and implemented point solutions to address issues that were surfaced through related focus groups and surveys. Among the many DE&I events the Committees organized and held throughout the year, we hosted a DE&I Lunch & Learn series that focused on the prominent issues impacting underrepresented minorities in healthcare clinical trials and how we, as a company, can do our part to help address these disparities.

 

Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) continued to be a foundational element to our DE&I efforts. The Women at Bridge ERG continued to have an impact across the Company in 2022. We built upon our speaker series and featured talks from influential women in the sciences, including members of our Board of Directors. Our mentorship program continued to drive impact as well.

 

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The success of Women at Bridge inspired a second employee resource group to emerge, Asians@Bridge, in the third quarter of 2021. Asians@Bridge held a series of cultural, educational and community events in 2022 that received exceptional feedback from participants and attendees. We also kicked off the planning for an employee resource group supporting the LGBTQ community, called Pride@Bridge, which was launched in January 2023.

Response to COVID-19

 

With the continuation of the COVID-19 global pandemic, we continue to take extra precautions to reduce the risk of virus exposure for all employees, and to place our employees’ health and safety front and center. Our response to the pandemic in 2022 revolved around three major components: (1) adequate safety protocols; (2) testing requirements; and (3) vaccination requirements.

Safety protocols: Building off the strong framework we laid in 2020, we continued to tune our protocols in accordance with federal, including Center for Disease Control and Prevention, state, and local guidelines. Our Covid Task Force, formed in 2020, met and continues to meet regularly to ensure we are staying on top of the rapidly changing situation across all of our facilities, and communicating these changes to our employees in a timely manner.
Testing: We continue to offer testing options for all BridgeBio employees who are on-site. In addition, in advance of any larger scale events, we worked to ensure that all attendees attested to having obtained a negative test prior to attendance.
Vaccines: We made the decision in 2021 to mandate vaccines for all of our employees in the wake of President Biden’s and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s mandate. We created a vaccine exemption request review committee and implemented a formal process for evaluating those with either a medical or a sincerely held religious belief exemption request.

 

Corporate and Other Information

We were incorporated as a Delaware corporation in 2019 under the name BridgeBio Pharma, Inc. Our principal executive offices are located at 3160 Porter Drive, Suite 250, Palo Alto, CA 94304. Our telephone number is (650) 391-9740.

Our web page address is https://bridgebio.com. Our investor relations website is located at https://investor.bridgebio.com. We make available free of charge on our investor relations website under “SEC Filings” our Annual Reports on Form 10‑K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10‑Q, Current Reports on Form 8‑K, including exhibits, our directors’ and officers’ Section 16 Reports and any amendments to those reports after filing or furnishing such materials to the SEC. References to our website address do not constitute incorporation by reference of the information contained on the website, and the information contained on the website is not part of this document or any other document that we file with or furnish to the SEC.

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ITEM 1A. RISK FACTORS

Our business involves significant risks, some of which are described below. You should carefully consider the risks and uncertainties described below, together with all of the other information contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, including “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the consolidated financial statements and the related notes. If any of the following risks actually occur, it could harm our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition and future prospects. In such event, the market price of our common stock could decline, and you could lose all or part of your investment. Additional risks and uncertainties not presently known to us or that we currently deem immaterial may also impair our business operations. This Annual Report on Form 10-K also contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Our actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements as a result of factors that are described below and elsewhere in this Annual Report.

Risks Related to Our Financial Position and Growth Strategy

Drug development is a highly uncertain undertaking and involves a substantial degree of risk. We have incurred significant losses since our inception and anticipate that we will continue to incur significant losses for the foreseeable future. We have not generated significant revenue since inception, which, together with our limited operating history, may make it difficult for you to assess our future viability.

Pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical product development is a highly speculative undertaking and involves a substantial degree of risk. We are a newly commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company with a limited operating history upon which you can evaluate our business and prospects. Our subsidiaries, on whose success we largely rely, are primarily early-stage biopharmaceutical companies. To date, we have focused principally on identifying, acquiring or in-licensing and developing our product candidates at the subsidiary level, almost all of which are in discovery, lead optimization, preclinical or clinical development. Our pipeline of product candidates will require substantial additional development time, including extensive clinical research, and resources before we would be able to apply for or receive additional regulatory approvals and begin generating revenue from sales of those product candidates, if approved.

We are not profitable and have incurred losses in each year since our inception in April 2015. Our net losses for the years ended December 31, 2022, 2021 and 2020 were $484.7 million, $586.5 million and $505.5 million, respectively. As of December 31, 2022, we had an accumulated deficit of $1.9 billion. We had two products approved for commercial sale, NULIBRY and TRUSELTIQ, but did not generate any significant revenues from product sales, and have financed operations solely through the sale of equity securities, debt financings and sale of certain assets. Sentynl purchased the global rights to NULIBRY in March 2022 and Helsinn, who is the principal selling party of TRUSELTIQ, will discontinue selling TRUSELTIQ by March 31, 2023. We continue to incur significant research and development, or R&D, and other expenses related to ongoing operations and expect to incur losses for the foreseeable future. In addition, as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we believe that potential delays in our ongoing and planned clinical trials and adjustments to certain of our study procedures with respect to our ongoing clinical trials, such as enabling alternate site, telehealth and home visits and at-home drug delivery, could increase our expenditures or draw out our expenditures over a longer period of time than originally estimated. Additionally, changes to our selection of contract research organizations, or CROs, for non-clinical laboratory activities and engagement with contract manufacturing organizations, or CMOs, to mitigate any potential near-term impacts to our supply chain may increase our expenditures relative to initial expectations. We anticipate these losses will increase substantially in future periods.

Because of the numerous risks and uncertainties associated with drug development and commercialization, we are unable to predict the timing or amount of our expenses, or when we will be able to generate any meaningful revenue or achieve or maintain profitability, if ever. In addition, our expenses could increase beyond our current expectations if we are required by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, or comparable foreign regulatory authorities, to conduct nonclinical or preclinical studies or clinical trials in addition to those that we currently anticipate or to otherwise provide data beyond that which we currently believe is necessary to support an application for marketing approval or to continue clinical development, or if there are any delays in any of our or our future collaborators’ clinical trials or the development of our product candidates, that we may identify. We anticipate incurring significant costs associated with commercializing any future product candidates, if approved, and ongoing compliance efforts.

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We may never be able to successfully commercialize a marketable drug or achieve profitability. Revenue from the sale of any product will be dependent, in part, upon the size of the markets in the territories for which we have or may gain regulatory approval, the accepted price for the product, the ability to obtain reimbursement at any price and whether we own the commercial rights for that territory. Our growth strategy depends on our ability to generate revenue. Even if we achieve profitability in the future, we may not be able to sustain profitability in subsequent periods. Our failure to achieve sustained profitability would depress the value of our Company and could impair our ability to raise capital, expand our business, diversify our research and development pipeline, market our product candidates, if approved, that we may identify and pursue, or continue our operations. Our prior losses, combined with expected future losses, have had and will continue to have an adverse effect on our stockholders’ deficit and working capital.

If we obtain a controlling interest in additional companies in the future, it could adversely affect our operating results and the value of our common stock, thereby disrupting our business.

As part of our strategy, we expect to form and invest in additional wholly-owned subsidiaries and variable interest entities, or VIEs. Investments in our existing and any future subsidiaries involve numerous risks, including, but not necessarily limited to:

risk of conducting research and development activities in new therapeutic areas or treatment modalities in which we have little to no experience;
diversion of financial and managerial resources from existing operations;
our ability to negotiate a proposed acquisition, in-license or investment in a timely manner or at a price or on terms and conditions favorable to us;
our ability to combine and integrate a potential acquisition into our existing business to fully realize the benefits of such acquisition;
the impact of regulatory reviews on a proposed acquisition, in-license or investment; and
the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted with respect to a potential acquisition, in-license or investment.

 

If we fail to properly evaluate potential acquisitions, in-licenses, investments or other transactions associated with the creation of new research and development programs or the maintenance of existing ones, we might not achieve the anticipated benefits of any such transaction, we might incur costs in excess of what we anticipate, and management resources and attention might be diverted from other necessary or valuable activities. For instance, in January 2021, we completed our acquisition of all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Eidos that were not previously owned by us or our subsidiaries, to which we refer as the Eidos Merger. In connection with the Eidos Merger and our integration of Eidos’ historical operations into our business, the attention of certain members of each company’s management and each company’s resources were diverted from day-to-day business operations. Additionally, the interests of our stockholders were diluted as a result of our issuance of shares of our common stock to Eidos’ stockholders and our assumption of certain equity awards of Eidos in connection with the transaction. We may engage in similar discussions in the future with respect to other potential transactions that may divert our time and resources from our ongoing operations. In addition, from time to time we have pursued, and may in the future pursue, research and development programs through our wholly-owned subsidiaries and VIEs that we may ultimately determine not to advance, based on our ongoing assessment of the likelihood of success relative to the costs and risks associated with the program.

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Risks Related to the Development of Our Product Candidates

We may encounter substantial delays in clinical trials, or may not be able to conduct or complete clinical trials on the expected timelines, if at all.

Clinical testing is expensive, time consuming and subject to uncertainty. We cannot guarantee that any of our ongoing and planned clinical trials will be conducted as planned or completed on schedule, if at all. Moreover, even if these trials are initiated or conducted on a timely basis, issues may arise that could result in the suspension or termination of such clinical trials. A failure of one or more clinical trials can occur at any stage of testing, and our ongoing and future clinical trials may not be successful. Events that may prevent successful or timely initiation or completion of clinical trials include:

inability to generate sufficient preclinical, toxicology or other in vivo or in vitro data to support the initiation or continuation of clinical trials;
delays in confirming target engagement, patient selection or other relevant biomarkers to be utilized in preclinical and clinical product candidate development;
delays in reaching a consensus with regulatory agencies as to the design or implementation of our clinical trials;
delays in reaching agreement on acceptable terms with prospective CROs and clinical trial sites, the terms of which can be subject to extensive negotiation and may vary significantly among different CROs and clinical trial sites;
delays in identifying, recruiting and training suitable clinical investigators;
delays in obtaining required Institutional Review Board, or IRB, approval at each clinical trial site;
imposition of a temporary or permanent clinical hold by regulatory agencies for a number of reasons, including after review of an Investigational New Drug application, or IND, or IND amendment, clinical trial application, or CTA, or CTA amendment, or equivalent application or amendment; or as a result of a new safety finding that presents unreasonable risk to clinical trial participants or a negative finding from an inspection of our clinical trial operations or study sites;
developments in trials for other product candidates with the same targets or related modalities as our product candidates conducted by third parties that raise regulatory or safety concerns about risk to patients of the treatment, or if the FDA or other governmental authority finds that the investigational protocol or plan is clearly deficient to meet its stated objectives;
difficulties in securing access to materials for the comparator arm of certain of our clinical trials;
delays in identifying, recruiting and enrolling suitable patients to participate in clinical trials, and delays caused by patients withdrawing from clinical trials or failing to return for post-treatment follow-up;
difficulty collaborating with patient groups and investigators;
failure by CROs, other third parties or us to adhere to clinical trial requirements;
failure to perform in accordance with the FDA’s or any other regulatory authority’s current good clinical practices, or GCP, requirements, or regulatory guidelines in other countries;
occurrence of adverse events, or AEs, associated with the product candidate that are viewed to outweigh its potential benefits;
changes in regulatory requirements and guidance that require amending or submitting new clinical protocols;
changes in the standard of care on which a clinical development plan was based, which may require new or additional trials;
the cost of clinical trials of any product candidates that we may identify and pursue being greater than we anticipate;

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clinical trials of any product candidates that we may identify and pursue producing negative or inconclusive results or failing to meet a specified endpoint, which may result in our deciding, or regulators requiring us, to conduct additional clinical trials or to abandon product development programs;
delays in clinical trial enrollment or clinical trial initiation resulting from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, including the emergence of new variants, or any future pandemics;
transfer of manufacturing processes to larger-scale facilities operated by a CMO, or by us, and delays or failure by our CMOs or us to make any necessary changes to such manufacturing process; and
delays in manufacturing, testing, releasing, validating or importing/exporting sufficient stable quantities of product candidates that we may identify for use in clinical trials, or the inability to do any of the foregoing.

Any inability to successfully initiate or complete clinical trials could result in additional costs to us or impair our ability to generate revenue. In addition, if we make manufacturing or formulation changes to our product candidates, we may be required to or we may elect to conduct additional nonclinical studies or clinical trials to bridge data obtained from our modified product candidates to data obtained from nonclinical and clinical research conducted using earlier versions of these product candidates. Clinical trial delays could also shorten any periods during which our product candidates have patent protection and may allow our competitors to bring products to market before we do, which could impair our ability to successfully commercialize product candidates and may harm our business and results of operations.

We could also encounter delays if an ongoing or planned clinical trial is suspended or terminated by us, by the data safety monitoring board, or DSMB, including for our ongoing Phase 3 clinical trial of acoramidis, ongoing Phase 2 and planned Phase 3 clinical trials of low-dose infigratinib, our ongoing Phase 2 and planned Phase 3 clinical trials of BBP-418, our ongoing Phase 1/2 clinical trial of BBP-631 and our ongoing Phase 2b and Phase 3 clinical trials of encaleret, or by the FDA or other regulatory authority, or if the IRBs of the institutions in which such trials are being conducted suspend or terminate the participation of their clinical investigators and sites subject to their review. Such authorities may suspend or terminate a clinical trial due to a number of factors, including failure to conduct the clinical trial in accordance with regulatory requirements or our clinical protocols, inspection of the clinical trial operations or trial site by the FDA or other regulatory authorities resulting in the imposition of a clinical hold, unforeseen safety issues or adverse side effects, failure to demonstrate a benefit from using a product candidate, changes in governmental regulations or administrative actions or lack of adequate funding to continue the clinical trial. For instance, although acoramidis failed to meet its primary endpoint at Month 12 in the ATTRibute-CM Study, the ATTRibute-CM independent data monitoring committee recommended continuing the study through the Month 30 endpoint based on unblinded data reviews. We have in the past received, and may receive in the future, partial or full clinical hold notices from the FDA or other regulatory authorities, which have required, and may in the future require, us to conduct additional studies, generate additional data, amend our clinical trial protocols and/or delay or halt the initiation or continuation of our clinical trials. We may be required or may voluntarily determine to place one or more of our product candidates on clinical hold in the future for various reasons, which could delay or otherwise impair our clinical development efforts and ability to obtain regulatory approval for any such product candidate. Additionally, the FDA may determine, upon review of an IND submission, that we have not provided sufficient information needed to assess the risks to subjects of the proposed studies, or that our IND submission is otherwise insufficient to support initiation of a clinical trial. There is no guarantee that the FDA will agree that our responses are sufficient, and we may be required to conduct additional preclinical studies or manufacturing steps before the FDA allows our proposed clinical trials to proceed.

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Moreover, principal investigators for our clinical trials may serve as scientific advisors or consultants to us from time to time and receive compensation in connection with such services. Under certain circumstances, we may be required to report some of these relationships to the FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authorities. The FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authority may conclude that a financial relationship between us and a principal investigator has created a conflict of interest or otherwise affected interpretation of the study. The FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authority may therefore question the integrity of the data generated at the applicable clinical trial site and the utility of the clinical trial itself may be jeopardized. This could result in a delay in approval, or rejection, of our marketing applications by the FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authority, as the case may be, and may ultimately lead to the denial of marketing approval of one or more of our product candidates.

Delays in the initiation, conduct or completion of any clinical trial of our product candidates will increase our costs, slow down the product candidate development and approval process and delay or potentially jeopardize our ability to commence product sales and generate revenue from such product candidates, if approved. In addition, many of the factors that cause, or lead to, a delay in the commencement or completion of clinical trials may also ultimately lead to the denial of regulatory approval of our product candidates. In the event we identify any additional product candidates to pursue, we cannot be sure that submission of an IND or a CTA will result in the FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authority allowing clinical trials to begin in a timely manner, if at all. Any of these events could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

Results of earlier studies or clinical trials may not be predictive of future clinical trial results, and initial studies or clinical trials may not establish an adequate safety or efficacy profile for our product candidates to justify proceeding to advanced clinical trials or an application for regulatory approval.

The results of nonclinical and preclinical studies and clinical trials may not be predictive of the results of later-stage clinical trials, and interim results of a clinical trial do not necessarily predict final results. In addition, for certain of our product candidates that we acquired, we did not undertake the preclinical studies and clinical trials ourselves. The results of preclinical studies and clinical trials in one set of patients or disease indications, or from preclinical studies or clinical trials that we did not lead, may not be predictive of those obtained in another. In some instances, there can be significant variability in safety or efficacy results between different clinical trials of the same product candidate due to numerous factors, including changes in trial procedures set forth in protocols, differences in the size and type of the patient populations, changes in and adherence to the dosing regimen and other clinical trial protocols and the rate of dropout among clinical trial participants. In addition, preclinical and clinical data are often susceptible to various interpretations and analyses, and many companies that have believed their product candidates performed satisfactorily in preclinical studies and clinical trials have nonetheless failed to obtain marketing approval. Product candidates in later stages of clinical trials may fail to show the desired safety and efficacy profile despite having progressed through nonclinical studies and initial clinical trials. For instance, acoramidis failed to meet its primary endpoint at Month 12 in the ATTRibute-CM Study as mean observed six-minute walk distance, or 6MWD, decline for the acoramidis and placebo arms were 9 meters and 7 meters, respectively, both of which declines are similar to healthy elderly adults and less than prior untreated ATTR-CM cohorts; however, the ATTRibute-CM independent data monitoring committee has recommended that the study continue through the Month 30 endpoint based on unblinded data reviews. A number of companies in the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical industry have suffered significant setbacks in advanced clinical trials due to lack of efficacy or adverse safety profiles, notwithstanding promising results in earlier studies, and we cannot be certain that we will not face similar setbacks. Even if early-stage clinical trials are successful, we may need to conduct additional clinical trials of our product candidates in additional patient populations or under different treatment conditions before we are able to seek approvals from the FDA and regulatory authorities outside the United States to market and sell these product candidates. Our failure to obtain marketing approval for our product candidates for commercially viable indications, or at all, would substantially harm our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

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Additionally, some clinical trials of our product candidates performed to date were designed as open-label studies and were conducted at a limited number of clinical sites on a limited number of patients. An “open-label” clinical trial is one where both the patient and investigator know whether the patient is receiving the investigational product candidate or either an existing approved drug or placebo. Most typically, open-label clinical trials test only the investigational product candidate and sometimes may do so at different dose levels. Open-label clinical trials are subject to various limitations that may exaggerate any therapeutic effect as patients in open-label clinical trials are aware when they are receiving treatment. Open-label clinical trials may be subject to a “patient bias” where patients perceive their symptoms to have improved merely due to their awareness of receiving an experimental treatment. Moreover, patients selected for early clinical trials often include the most severe sufferers and their symptoms may have been bound to improve notwithstanding the new treatment. In addition, open-label clinical trials may be subject to an “investigator bias” where those assessing and reviewing the physiological outcomes of the clinical trials are aware of which patients have received treatment and may interpret the information of the treated group more favorably given this knowledge. Given that our Phase 2 clinical trial of acoramidis included an open-label clinical trial extension and our Phase 2 dose-escalation and expansion study of low-dose infigratinib in children with achondroplasia, or PROPEL 2, is designed as an open-label trial, the results from these clinical trials may not be predictive of future clinical trial results with these or other product candidates for which we include an open-label clinical trial when studied in a controlled environment with a placebo or active control.

We may encounter difficulties enrolling patients in clinical trials, and clinical development activities could thereby be delayed or otherwise adversely affected.

The timely completion of clinical trials in accordance with their protocols depends, among other things, on our ability to enroll a sufficient number of patients who remain in the trial until its conclusion. The indications for which we plan to evaluate our current product candidates represent a rare disease or condition with limited patient populations from which to draw participants in clinical trials. Due to our focus on the development of product candidates for the treatment of Mendelian diseases and genetically driven cancers, many of which are rare conditions, we may not be able to identify and enroll a sufficient number of patients, or those with required or desired characteristics and criteria, in a timely manner.

We may experience difficulties in patient enrollment in our clinical trials for a variety of reasons, including:

the size and nature of a patient population;
the patient eligibility criteria defined in the applicable clinical trial protocols, which may limit the patient populations eligible for clinical trials to a greater extent than competing clinical trials for the same indication;
the size of the study population required for analysis of the trial’s primary endpoints;
the severity of the disease under investigation;
the proximity of patients to a trial site;
the design of the trial;
the ability to recruit clinical trial investigators with the appropriate competencies and experience;
the approval or concurrent enrollment of clinical trials involving competing product candidates currently under development for Mendelian diseases or genetically driven cancers, or competing clinical trials for similar therapies or targeting patient populations meeting our patient eligibility criteria;
clinicians’ and patients’ perceptions as to the potential advantages and side effects of the product candidate being studied in relation to other available therapies and product candidates;
the ability to obtain and maintain patient consents; and
the risk that patients enrolled in clinical trials will not complete such trials for any reason, including due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

If we have difficulty enrolling sufficient numbers of patients to conduct clinical trials as planned, we may need to delay or terminate ongoing or planned clinical trials, either of which would have an adverse effect on our business.

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Use of our product candidates could be associated with side effects, adverse events or other properties or safety risks, which could delay or halt their clinical development, prevent their regulatory approval, cause us to suspend or discontinue clinical trials, abandon a product or product candidate, limit the commercial potential of a product candidate, if approved, or result in other significant negative consequences that could severely harm our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition.

As is the case with pharmaceuticals generally, it is likely that there may be side effects and adverse events, or AEs, associated with use of our product candidates. Results of our clinical trials could reveal a high and unacceptable severity and prevalence of side effects or unexpected characteristics. Undesirable side effects caused by our product candidates could cause us or regulatory authorities to interrupt, delay or halt clinical trials, and could result in a more restrictive label or the delay or denial of regulatory approval by the FDA or comparable foreign regulatory authorities. The drug-related side effects of our product candidates could affect patient recruitment or the ability of enrolled patients to complete the trial or result in potential product liability claims. Any of these occurrences may harm our business, financial condition and prospects significantly.

Moreover, if our product candidates are associated with undesirable side effects in preclinical studies or clinical trials or have characteristics that are unexpected, we may elect to abandon their development or limit their development to more narrow uses or subpopulations in which the undesirable side effects or other characteristics are less prevalent, less severe or more acceptable from a risk-benefit perspective, which may limit the commercial expectations for the product candidate if approved. We may also be required to modify or terminate our study plans based on findings in our preclinical studies or clinical trials. For instance, in our Phase 2 clinical trial of infigratinib for the treatment of FGFR-driven cancers, the most commonly reported treatment emergent AE of any grade was hyperphosphatemia, which is an electrolyte disorder in which there is an elevated level of phosphate in the blood. These and other AEs that we may observe in our ongoing and future preclinical studies and clinical trials of our product candidates could require us to delay, modify or abandon our development plans for the affected product candidate or other product candidates that share properties of the affected product candidate. Many product candidates that initially show promise in early-stage testing may later be found to cause side effects that prevent further development. As we work to advance existing product candidates and to identify new product candidates, we cannot be certain that later testing or trials of product candidates that initially showed promise in early testing will not be found to cause similar or different unacceptable side effects that prevent their further development.

It is possible that as we test our product candidates in larger, longer and more extensive clinical trials, or as the use of our product candidates, if they receive regulatory approval, becomes more widespread, illnesses, injuries, discomforts and other AEs that were observed in earlier trials, as well as conditions that did not occur or went undetected in previous trials, will be reported by subjects. If such side effects become known later in development or upon approval, such findings may harm our business, financial condition and prospects significantly.

Additionally, adverse developments in clinical trials of pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical products conducted by others may cause the FDA or other regulatory oversight bodies to suspend or terminate our clinical trials, to change the requirements for approval of any of our product candidates.

In addition to side effects caused by a product candidate, the administration process or related procedures also can cause adverse side effects. If any such AEs occur, our clinical trials of a product candidate could be suspended or terminated. If we are unable to demonstrate that any AEs were caused by the administration process or related procedures, the FDA, the European Commission, the EMA, or other regulatory authorities could order us to cease further development of, or deny approval of, a product candidate for any or all targeted indications. Even if we can demonstrate that all future serious adverse events, or SAEs, are not product-related, such occurrences could affect patient recruitment, or the ability of enrolled patients to complete the trial. Moreover, if we elect, or are required, to not initiate, delay, suspend or terminate any future clinical trial of any of our product candidates, the commercial prospects of such product candidates may be harmed and our ability to generate product revenues from any of these product candidates may be delayed or eliminated. Any of these occurrences may harm our ability to develop other product candidates, and may harm our business, financial condition and prospects significantly.

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Additionally, if any of our product candidates receives marketing approval, the FDA could impose a boxed warning in the labeling of our product and could require us to adopt a risk evaluation and mitigation strategy, or REMS, and could apply elements to assure safe use to ensure that the benefits of the product outweigh its risks, which may include, among other things, a Medication Guide outlining the risks of the product for distribution to patients and a communication plan to health care practitioners. Furthermore, if we or others later identify undesirable side effects caused by our product candidates once approved, several potentially significant negative consequences could result, including:

regulatory authorities may suspend or withdraw approvals of such product or product candidate;
regulatory authorities may require additional warnings or statements on the label;
regulatory authorities may refuse to approve label expansion for additional indications of such product or product candidate;
we may be required by the FDA to implement a REMS;
we may be required to change the way a product or product candidate is distributed, administered or conduct additional clinical trials;
we may be subject to regulatory investigations and enforcement actions;
we may decide to remove such product or product candidate from the marketplace;
we could be sued and held liable for harm caused to patients; and
our reputation may suffer.

Any of these occurrences could prevent us from achieving or maintaining market acceptance of the particular product or product candidate, if approved, and may harm our business, financial condition and prospects significantly.

Certain of our product candidates are under development for the treatment of patient populations with significant comorbidities that may result in deaths or serious adverse or unacceptable side effects and require us to abandon or limit our clinical development activities.

Patients in certain of our ongoing and planned clinical trials of product candidates in genetically driven cancers, including clinical trials of infigratinib of FGFR-driven cancers and our Phase 1 monotherapy dose escalation and expansion clinical trial of BBP-398 in patients with RAS and RTK mutations, as well as patients who may undergo treatment with other product candidates that we may develop, may also receive chemotherapy, radiation, and/or other high dose or myeloablative treatments in the course of treatment of their disease, and may therefore experience side effects or AEs, including death, that are unrelated to our product candidates. While these side effects or AEs may be unrelated to our product candidates, they may still affect the success of our clinical trials. The inclusion of critically ill patients in our clinical trials may also result in deaths or other adverse medical events due to underlying disease or to other therapies or medications that such patients may receive. Any of these events could prevent us from advancing our product candidates through clinical development, and from obtaining regulatory approval, and would impair our ability to commercialize our product candidates. Any inability to advance our product candidates through clinical development may harm our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

Interim, “top-line,” and preliminary data from our clinical trials that we announce or publish from time to time may change as more patient data become available or as additional analyses are conducted, and as the data are subject to audit and verification procedures that could result in material changes in the final data.

From time to time, we may publish interim, “top-line” or preliminary data from our clinical trials. Interim data from clinical trials that we may complete are subject to the risk that one or more of the clinical outcomes may materially change as patient enrollment continues and more patient data become available. Preliminary or “top-line” data also remain subject to audit and verification procedures that may result in the final data being materially different from the preliminary data we previously published. As a result, interim and preliminary data should be viewed with caution until the final data are available. Material adverse changes between preliminary, “top-line” or interim data and final data could significantly harm our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

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Risks Related to Regulatory Review and Approval of our Product Candidates

Our product candidates are in preclinical or clinical development, which is a lengthy and expensive process with uncertain outcomes and the potential for substantial delays. We cannot give any assurance that any of our product candidates will receive regulatory approval, which is necessary before they can be commercialized.

Before obtaining marketing approval from regulatory authorities for the sale of our product candidates, we must conduct extensive clinical trials to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of the product candidates in humans. To date, we have focused substantially all of our efforts and financial resources on identifying, acquiring, and developing our product candidates, including conducting lead optimization, nonclinical studies, preclinical studies and clinical trials, and providing general and administrative support for these operations. We cannot be certain that any clinical trials will be conducted as planned or completed on schedule, if at all. Our inability to successfully complete preclinical and clinical development could result in additional costs to us and negatively impact our ability to generate revenue. Our future success is dependent on our ability to successfully develop, obtain regulatory approval for, and then successfully commercialize product candidates. While we previously had two products approved for sale, we have not generated significant revenue from sales of drugs, and we may never be able to successfully commercialize a marketable drug.

All of our product candidates require additional development; management of preclinical, clinical and manufacturing activities; and regulatory approval. In addition, we will need to obtain adequate manufacturing supply; complete the build-out of a commercial organization; commence product candidate-specific marketing efforts; and obtain reimbursement before we generate any significant revenue from commercial product sales from such product candidates, if ever. Many of our product candidates are in early-stage research or translational phases of development, and the risk of failure for these programs is high. We cannot be certain that our product candidates will be successful in clinical trials or receive regulatory approval. Further, our product candidates may not receive regulatory approval even if they are successful in clinical trials. If we do not receive regulatory approvals for our product candidates, we and our subsidiaries may not be able to continue operations, which may result in us winding down and dissolving the subsidiary, selling or out-licensing the technology or pursuing an alternative strategy.