SOURCE: Micromet Inc.

October 25, 2006 03:09 ET

Micromet Presents New Anti-IL-2 Antibody with Unique Mode of Action

CARLSBAD, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- October 25, 2006 --

Potential against Inflammatory Diseases, T Cell Leukemia and Transplant Rejection

Carlsbad, CA - October 25, 2006 - Micromet, Inc. (NASDAQ: MITI), a biopharmaceutical company focusing on the development of novel, proprietary antibody-based products for cancer, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, is developing a monoclonal antibody inhibiting IL-2 signaling as potential novel immunosuppressant. Preclinical data on the compound, designated MT204, were now published online in the journal Molecular Immunology (1).

The inhibitory effect of MT204 was studied in vitro in comparison to Zenapax® (daclizumab), a marketed therapeutic antibody, which interferes with the IL-2 pathway by blocking the high-affinity CD25 subunit of the IL-2 receptor complex on T cells. Both antibodies were equally effective in inhibiting activation and proliferation of human T cells carrying the CD25 subunit. However, the data suggest that MT204 may be far superior in preventing proliferation of NKL lymphoma cells and primary natural killer (NK) cells, which do not express CD25 as part of their IL-2 receptor. Moreover, it was shown that MT204 could effectively impede IL-2 signaling events even after IL-2 was bound to its receptor on CD25-positive cells.

Based on these findings, Micromet researchers believe that MT204 may act in a dual manner: Firstly, it neutralizes IL-2 and thereby prevents binding of the cytokine to cells bearing the intermediate affinity IL-2 receptors, which lack the CD25 subunit. Secondly, MT204 binds to IL-2 already complexed with the CD25 subunit of the high affinity IL-2 receptor in a fashion that antagonizes downstream signaling and cellular responses to IL-2 by CD25-expressing cell types.

"To our knowledge, MT204 currently is the only inhibitory antibody against the IL-2 cytokine under development. We have carefully selected the antibody to interfere with the IL-2 pathway in a dual fashion," Patrick Baeuerle, CSO of Micromet, Inc. comments. "This mode of action and the choice of IL-2 as a target differentiates the compound from existing products in this space."

Micromet's most advanced product candidate is MT201 (adecatumumab), a human antibody, that has completed two Phase 2 trials in prostate cancer and in metastatic breast cancer as a single agent, respectively. MT201 is being developed in collaboration with Serono. Micromet's second product candidate in clinical trials is MT103 (MEDI-538), a BiTE® compound, currently in a Phase 1 clinical trial in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) in Europe. Micromet's partner MedImmune has recently submitted an IND to the FDA to initiate clinical trials of MT103 in NHL in the United States.

About the IL-2 pathway

IL-2 is considered a key regulatory cytokine in the human immune system. Cellular responses to IL-2 include the differentiation, cytokine release and potent proliferation of T lymphocytes as well as natural killer (NK) cells. Also B cells, monocytes and eosinophils respond in different ways to IL-2, and certain forms of blood-bourne cancers require IL-2 as growth factor. Interference with the IL-2 pathway presents a validated therapeutic approach for the control of inflammatory processes as is exemplified by a range of marketed products including monoclonal antibodies (e.g., Zenapax®, Simulect®) as well as small molecule inhibitors (e.g., rapamycin, cyclosporine, tacrolimus). Most of them are currently in use for preventing acute transplant rejection but some also show clinical activity in psoriasis and in clinical trials for the treatment of T cell leukemia, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and several other inflammatory diseases.


Volkland J., Lumsden J., Molhoj M., Raum T., Hausmann S., Wissing S., Wissinger M., Hoffmann P., Sriskandarajah M., Kvesic M., Baeuerle P.A., Pflanz S., A humanized monoclonal antibody against interleukin-2 that can inactivate the cytokine / receptor complex, Mol Immunol, 2006, epub ahead of print

About Micromet, Inc.

Micromet, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focusing on the development of novel, proprietary antibody-based products for cancer, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Two product candidates are currently in clinical trials. Adecatumumab (MT201) is a recombinant human monoclonal antibody with which Micromet has completed two Phase 2 clinical trials in patients with breast cancer and prostate cancer. MT103 (MEDI-538), a BiTE® product candidate, is being studied in a Phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with Non Hodgkin Lymphoma. Micromet has established a drug development platform based on its BiTE® technology, a unique, antibody-based format that leverages the cytotoxic potential of T cells, the most powerful 'killer cells' of the human immune system. Micromet has established collaborations with MedImmune, Inc. and Serono. More information:

Contact Information:

Investor Contact:
Ines-Regina Buth
+1 760-494-4235 (US)
+49 (0)89 895277 221 (Europe)

Media Contacts:
Europe: Evelyn Wolf
+49 (0)89 895277 220

US: Susan Noonan
(212) 966-3650
Forward-Looking Statements

This release contains certain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to be materially different from historical results or from any future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements include statements regarding the efficacy, safety, and intended utilization of Micromet's product candidates, the conduct and results of future clinical trials, plans regarding regulatory filings, future research, discovery and clinical trials of new product candidates, and plans regarding partnering activities. Factors that may cause actual results to differ materially include the risk that product candidates that appeared promising in early research and clinical trials do not demonstrate safety and/or efficacy in larger-scale or later clinical trials, the risk that we will not obtain approval to market our products, the risks associated with reliance on outside financing to meet capital requirements, and the risks associated with reliance on collaborative partners for future revenues under the terms of our existing collaboration agreements. You are urged to consider statements that include the words "may," "will," "would," "could," "should," "believes," "estimates," "projects," "potential," "expects," "plans," "anticipates," "intends," "continues," "forecast," "designed," "goal," or the negative of those words or other comparable words to be uncertain and forward-looking. These factors and others are more fully discussed in our periodic reports and other filings with the SEC, including the "Risk Factors" sections of such reports.

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