Advaxis shares climb after fiscal 2Q loss comes in better than expected, cash burn subsides

The New Jersey-based biotech promised cost savings through rationalization of its portfolio and job cuts

A researcher in a lab
Advaxis climbed 4.7% to US$1.79 in midday trade

Shares of Advaxis Inc. (NASDAQ:ADXS) climbed Thursday after the New Jersey-based biotech posted smaller-than-expected losses in the fiscal second quarter.

Investors sent shares of Advaxis up after it said it will reduce its annual cash burn to around US$50mln from US$80mln through a “combination of portfolio rationalization and headcount reduction.”  

Advaxis's stock climbed 4.7% to US$1.79 in midday trade.

The Princeton, New Jersey, clinical-stage biotechnology company reported a fiscal second-quarter loss of US$0.27 per share on revenue of US$1.7mln. The consensus estimate was a loss of US$0.41 per share on revenue of US$2.4mln. Revenue fell 49% compared with the same quarter a year ago.

Seeking a partner for a pair of immunotherapy candidates

Advaxis is developing Axalimogene filolisbac and ADXS-Dual that are Lm-LLO immunotherapy product candidates for the treatment of human papilloma virus-associated cancers.

The company said it has decided to reduce internal investment in axalimogene filolisbac and will seek partnership opportunities.

“If the company is unable to secure a partner within a limited period of time, Advaxis will wind down the ongoing AIM2CERV trial in high-risk locally advanced cervical cancer, and will not conduct the ADVANCE PD-1 combination trial in metastatic cervical cancer, which has not yet been initiated,” said the company.

Advaxis has determined to focus future development efforts for axalimogene filolisbac on HPV-positive head-and-neck cancer through cost-effective clinical studies.

READ: Advaxis to raise US$20mln as it looks to advance portfolio of cancer treatments

The company has decided to increase internal investment in the ADXS-NEO and ADXS-HOT programs, both of which target neoantigens, a potentially transformational, next-gen approach to treating cancer.

“Everything we are striving to accomplish depends on focus and optimal allocation of resources, and is designed to maximize shareholder value. We are dedicating more resources to the HOT program because these assets scored very high when we conducted our portfolio review,” said Advaxis CEO Ken Berlin.

“Our new approach is based on a simple reality: While we are fortunate to have a robust product pipeline, we cannot continue to pursue all programs with our current level of resources. We continue to believe in HPV as a target, and are evaluating cost-effective studies for AXAL in head-and-neck cancer. We hope to secure a partner to continue the development of AXAL in cervical cancer,” he added.

Quick facts: Advaxis

Price: 0.3882 USD

Market: NASDAQ
Market Cap: $25.71 m

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