Endocyte Suspends Late-Stage Trial

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West Lafayette-based Endocyte Inc. (Nasdaq: ECYT) and global pharmaceutical company Merck (NYSE: MRK) have suspended a late-stage trial of a potential ovarian cancer treatment. The decision follows an analysis by the Data Safety Monitoring Board indicating the treatment has not met key goals. The news has driven down Endocyte stock on the Nasdaq by more than 60 percent. May 2, 2014

News Release

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. & WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Merck (NYSE:MRK), known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, and Endocyte, Inc. (NASDAQ:ECYT), today announced that the Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) of the PROCEED trial has completed a pre-specified, interim futility analysis and the DSMB recommended that the trial be stopped because vintafolide did not demonstrate efficacy on the pre-specified outcome of Progression-Free Survival (PFS) in patients with platinum-resistant ovarian cancer. The DSMB did not identify any safety concerns for the patients enrolled in the trial. Based on the DSMB recommendation and while further review of the data is conducted, the Companies have taken steps to notify investigators that screening and randomization of participants in the trial will be suspended.

PROCEED is a Phase 3 randomized, double-blind clinical trial, evaluating vintafolide in combination with pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (PLD) compared to PLD plus placebo for the treatment of folate receptor-positive, platinum-resistant ovarian cancer. The primary endpoint of the trial was PFS as measured by RECIST v 1.1 (Response Evaluation Criteria In Solid Tumor) criteria in patients with all target tumor lesions positive as assessed by etarfolatide imaging agent.

About Merck

Today’s Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and consumer care and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information, visit www.merck.com and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

About Endocyte

Endocyte is a biopharmaceutical company and leader in developing targeted small molecule drug conjugates (SMDCs) and companion imaging agents for personalized therapy in cancer and other serious diseases. Endocyte uses its proprietary technology to create novel SMDCs and companion imaging agents for personalized targeted therapies. The company's SMDCs actively target receptors that are expressed or over-expressed on diseased cells, relative to healthy cells. This targeted approach is designed to enable the treatment of patients with highly potent drugs into these cells. The companion imaging agents are designed to identify patients whose disease expresses the molecular target of the therapy and who therefore may be more likely to benefit from treatment. For more information, visit http://www.endocyte.com.

Source: Endocyte Inc.