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Amgen And Allergan Submit Biologics License Application For ABP 798, Biosimilar Candidate To Rituxan® (rituximab), To U.S. Food And Drug Administration

Filing for ABP 798 Supported by Two Comparative Clinical Studies

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif., Dec. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) and Allergan plc. (NYSE:AGN) today announced the submission of a Biologics License Application (BLA) to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for ABP 798, a biosimilar candidate to Rituxan® (rituximab). Amgen and Allergan are collaborating on four oncology biosimilar medicines, two of which have already been approved by the FDA.

"The U.S. filing for ABP 798 marks an important milestone for Amgen, as it affirms our commitment to providing high quality biosimilars that offer more life-altering biological treatment options and contribute to the sustainability of healthcare systems," said David M. Reese, M.D., executive vice president of Research and Development at Amgen. "We look forward to working with the FDA to bring ABP 798 to market."

ABP 798 has been developed as a biosimilar candidate to Rituxan. Rituxan is a CD20-directed cytolytic antibody that has been approved in many regions for, among other things, the treatment of adult patients alone or in combination with chemotherapy for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, in combination with fludarabine and cyclophosphamide for chronic lymphocytic leukemia, granulomatosis with polyangiitis and microscopic polyangiitis with glucocorticoids. 

"We are excited about the progress that we've made to date through our partnership with Amgen, which includes the launch of the first two oncology therapeutic biosimilars in the U.S.," said David Nicholson, Ph.D., chief research and development officer at Allergan. "With ABP 798, we look forward to the opportunity to continue to provide additional treatment options to patients suffering from serious illnesses."

The BLA submission includes analytical, pharmacokinetic and clinical data, as well as pharmacology and toxicology data generated in two clinical studies. The results of these studies confirmed no clinically meaningful differences between ABP 798 and Rituxan.

Amgen has a total of 10 biosimilars in its portfolio, four of which have been approved in the U.S. and three that are approved in the European Union (EU).

About ABP 798
ABP 798 has been developed as a biosimilar candidate to Rituxan. Rituxan is an anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody that has been approved in many regions for the treatment of, among other things, adult patients alone or in combination with chemotherapy for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, in combination with fludarabine and cyclophosphamide for chronic lymphocytic leukemia, granulomatosis with polyangiitis and microscopic polyangiitis with glucocorticoids. The active ingredient of ABP 798 is a monoclonal antibody that has the same amino acid sequence as Rituxan.

About the Amgen and Allergan Collaboration
In December 2011, Amgen and Allergan plc. (then Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc.) formed a collaboration to develop and commercialize, on a worldwide basis, four oncology antibody biosimilar medicines. This collaboration reflects the shared belief that the development and commercialization of biosimilar products will not follow a pure brand or generic model and will require significant expertise, infrastructure, and investment to ensure safe, reliably supplied therapies for patients. Under the terms of the agreement, Amgen assumes primary responsibility for developing, manufacturing and initially commercializing the oncology antibody products.

About Amgen Biosimilars 
Amgen is committed to building upon Amgen's experience in the development and manufacturing of innovative human therapeutics to expand Amgen's reach to patients with serious illnesses. Biosimilars will help to maintain Amgen's commitment to connect patients with vital medicines, and Amgen is well positioned to leverage its nearly four decades of experience in biotechnology to create high-quality biosimilars and reliably supply them to patients worldwide.

For more information, visit www.amgenbiosimilars.com and follow us on www.twitter.com/amgenbiosim.

About Amgen Oncology
Amgen is searching for and finding answers to incredibly complex questions that will advance care and improve lives for cancer patients and their families. Our research drives us to understand the disease in the context of the patient's life – not just their cancer journey – so they can take control of their lives.

For the last four decades, we have been dedicated to discovering the firsts that matter in oncology and to finding ways to reduce the burden of cancer. Building on our heritage, Amgen continues to advance the largest pipeline in the Company's history, moving with great speed to advance those innovations for the patients who need them.

At Amgen, we are driven by our commitment to transform the lives of cancer patients and keep them at the center of everything we do. 

For more information, follow us on www.twitter.com/amgenoncology

About Amgen 
Amgen is committed to unlocking the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing and delivering innovative human therapeutics. This approach begins by using tools like advanced human genetics to unravel the complexities of disease and understand the fundamentals of human biology.

Amgen focuses on areas of high unmet medical need and leverages its expertise to strive for solutions that improve health outcomes and dramatically improve people's lives. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen has grown to be one of the world's leading independent biotechnology companies, has reached millions of patients around the world and is developing a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential.

For more information, visit www.amgen.com and follow us on www.twitter.com/amgen.

About Allergan plc
Allergan plc (NYSE: AGN), headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, is a bold, global pharmaceutical leader. Allergan is focused on developing, manufacturing and commercializing branded pharmaceutical, device, biologic, surgical and regenerative medicine products for patients around the world.

Allergan markets a portfolio of leading brands and best-in-class products primarily focused on four key therapeutic areas including central nervous system, eye care, medical aesthetics and gastroenterology.

Allergan is an industry leader in Open Science, a model of research and development, which defines our approach to identifying and developing game-changing ideas and innovation for better patient care. With this approach, Allergan has built one of the broadest development pipelines in the pharmaceutical industry.

Allergan's success is powered by our global colleagues' commitment to being Bold for Life. Together, we build bridges, power ideas, act fast and drive results for our customers and patients around the world by always doing what is right.

With commercial operations in approximately 100 countries, Allergan is committed to working with physicians, healthcare providers and patients to deliver innovative and meaningful treatments that help people around the world live longer, healthier lives every day.

For more information, visit Allergan's website at www.Allergan.com.

Amgen Forward-Looking Statements 
This news release contains forward-looking statements that are based on the current expectations and beliefs of Amgen. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements, including any statements on the outcome, benefits and synergies of collaboration with any other company, including BeiGene, Ltd. or the Otezla® (apremilast) acquisition, including anticipated Otezla sales growth and the timing of non-GAAP EPS accretion, as well as estimates of revenues, operating margins, capital expenditures, cash, other financial metrics, expected legal, arbitration, political, regulatory or clinical results or practices, customer and prescriber patterns or practices, reimbursement activities and outcomes and other such estimates and results. Forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties, including those discussed below and more fully described in the Securities and Exchange Commission reports filed by Amgen, including our most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequent periodic reports on Form 10-Q and current reports on Form 8-K. Unless otherwise noted, Amgen is providing this information as of the date of this news release and does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this document as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed and actual results may differ materially from those we project. Discovery or identification of new product candidates or development of new indications for existing products cannot be guaranteed and movement from concept to product is uncertain; consequently, there can be no guarantee that any particular product candidate or development of a new indication for an existing product will be successful and become a commercial product. Further, preclinical results do not guarantee safe and effective performance of product candidates in humans. The complexity of the human body cannot be perfectly, or sometimes, even adequately modeled by computer or cell culture systems or animal models. The length of time that it takes for us to complete clinical trials and obtain regulatory approval for product marketing has in the past varied and we expect similar variability in the future. Even when clinical trials are successful, regulatory authorities may question the sufficiency for approval of the trial endpoints we have selected. We develop product candidates internally and through licensing collaborations, partnerships and joint ventures. Product candidates that are derived from relationships may be subject to disputes between the parties or may prove to be not as effective or as safe as we may have believed at the time of entering into such relationship. Also, we or others could identify safety, side effects or manufacturing problems with our products, including our devices, after they are on the market.

Our results may be affected by our ability to successfully market both new and existing products domestically and internationally, clinical and regulatory developments involving current and future products, sales growth of recently launched products, competition from other products including biosimilars, difficulties or delays in manufacturing our products and global economic conditions. In addition, sales of our products are affected by pricing pressure, political and public scrutiny and reimbursement policies imposed by third-party payers, including governments, private insurance plans and managed care providers and may be affected by regulatory, clinical and guideline developments and domestic and international trends toward managed care and healthcare cost containment. Furthermore, our research, testing, pricing, marketing and other operations are subject to extensive regulation by domestic and foreign government regulatory authorities. Our business may be impacted by government investigations, litigation and product liability claims. In addition, our business may be impacted by the adoption of new tax legislation or exposure to additional tax liabilities. If we fail to meet the compliance obligations in the corporate integrity agreement between us and the U.S. government, we could become subject to significant sanctions. Further, while we routinely obtain patents for our products and technology, the protection offered by our patents and patent applications may be challenged, invalidated or circumvented by our competitors, or we may fail to prevail in present and future intellectual property litigation. We perform a substantial amount of our commercial manufacturing activities at a few key facilities, including in Puerto Rico, and also depend on third parties for a portion of our manufacturing activities, and limits on supply may constrain sales of certain of our current products and product candidate development. We rely on collaborations with third parties for the development of some of our product candidates and for the commercialization and sales of some of our commercial products. In addition, we compete with other companies with respect to many of our marketed products as well as for the discovery and development of new products. Further, some raw materials, medical devices and component parts for our products are supplied by sole third-party suppliers. Certain of our distributors, customers and payers have substantial purchasing leverage in their dealings with us. The discovery of significant problems with a product similar to one of our products that implicate an entire class of products could have a material adverse effect on sales of the affected products and on our business and results of operations. Our efforts to collaborate with or acquire other companies or products and to integrate the operations of companies or in support of products we have acquired, may not be successful. A breakdown, cyberattack or information security breach could compromise the confidentiality, integrity and availability of our systems and our data. Our stock price is volatile and may be affected by a number of events. Our business performance could affect or limit the ability of our Board of Directors to declare a dividend or our ability to pay a dividend or repurchase our common stock. We may not be able to access the capital and credit markets on terms that are favorable to us, or at all.

The scientific information discussed in this news release related to our product candidates is preliminary and investigative.  Such product candidates are not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and no conclusions can or should be drawn regarding the safety or effectiveness of the product candidates.

Allergan plc Forward-Looking Statements
Statements contained in this press release that refer to future events or other non-historical facts are forward-looking statements that reflect Allergan's current perspective on existing trends and information as of the date of this release. Actual results may differ materially from Allergan's current expectations depending upon a number of factors affecting Allergan's business. These factors include, among others, the difficulty of predicting the timing or outcome of FDA approvals or actions, if any; the impact of competitive products and pricing; market acceptance of and continued demand for Allergan's products; the impact of uncertainty around timing of generic entry related to key products, including RESTASIS®, on our financial results; risks associated with divestitures, acquisitions, mergers and joint ventures; risks related to impairments; uncertainty associated with financial projections, projected cost reductions, projected debt reduction, projected synergies, restructurings, increased costs, and adverse tax consequences; difficulties or delays in manufacturing; and other risks and uncertainties detailed in Allergan's periodic public filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including but not limited to Allergan's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018 and Allergan's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended March 31, 2019. Except as expressly required by law, Allergan disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Rituxan® is a registered trademark of Biogen Inc.

CONTACT: Amgen, Thousand Oaks
Kelley Davenport, 202-585-9637 (media)
Trish Hawkins, 805-447-5631 (media)
Arvind Sood, 805-447-1060 (investors)

CONTACT: Allergan plc.
Daphne Karydas, 862-261-8006 (investor relations)
Frances DeSena , 862-261-8820 (media relations)

Amgen Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Amgen) (PRNewsFoto/)

 

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