Idera Pharmaceuticals Achieves Clinical Milestone Under Its Collaboration with Merck KGaA for Cancer Treatment

- Clinical Trial Initiated in First-Line Treatment of Patients with Head and Neck Cancer –

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: IDRA), today announced that it has achieved a milestone under its worldwide licensing and collaboration agreement with Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. The milestone was achieved upon Merck KGaA’s initiation of a Phase 1b clinical trial of IMO-2055 (EMD 1201081), an agonist of Toll-like Receptor 9 (TLR9), in combination with cisplatin, fluorouracil and cetuximab (Erbitux®) in first-line treatment of patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). Under the terms of the agreement, Idera is entitled to receive a payment of €3.0 million (approximately $3.8 million) from Merck KGaA.

“We are very pleased that Merck KGaA has initiated a clinical trial to evaluate IMO-2055 in the first-line treatment of patients with head and neck cancer,” said Tim Sullivan, Ph.D., Idera’s Vice President of Development Programs and Alliance Management. “The first-line trial is in addition to the Phase 2 clinical trial announced earlier this year to evaluate IMO-2055 in second-line treatment of patients with recurrent or metastatic SCCHN.”

About the Collaboration

Idera Pharmaceuticals entered into a worldwide licensing and collaboration agreement with Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in December 2007 for the research, development and commercialization of Idera’s Toll-like Receptor 9 (TLR9) agonists, including IMO-2055, for the potential treatment of cancers. In addition to the clinical study announced today, under the company’s collaboration with Merck KGaA, IMO-2055 is being evaluated in a Phase 2 clinical trial in combination with Erbitux® in second-line patients with recurrent or metastatic SCCHN, in a Phase 1b clinical trial in combination with erlotinib (Tarceva®) and bevacizumab (Avastin®) in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer and in a Phase 1b clinical trial in combination with Erbitux® and an irinotecan-containing treatment regimen in patients with colorectal cancer.

About Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Idera Pharmaceuticals develops drug candidates to treat infectious diseases, autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, cancer, and respiratory diseases, and for use as vaccine adjuvants. Our proprietary drug candidates are designed to modulate specific Toll-like Receptors, which are a family of immune system receptors that direct immune system responses. Our pioneering DNA and RNA chemistry expertise enables us to create drug candidates for internal development and generates opportunities for multiple collaborative alliances. For more information, visit

Idera Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. For this purpose, any statements contained herein that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. Without limiting the foregoing, the words "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "estimates," "intends," "should," "could," "will," "may," and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. There are a number of important factors that could cause Idera's actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements, including whether results obtained in preclinical studies and early clinical trials will be indicative of results obtained in future clinical trials; whether products based on Idera's technology will advance into or through the clinical trial process on a timely basis or at all and receive approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration or equivalent foreign regulatory agencies; whether, if the Company's products receive approval, they will be successfully distributed and marketed; whether the Company's collaborations, including its collaboration with Merck KGaA, will be successful; whether the patents and patent applications owned or licensed by the Company will protect the Company's technology and prevent others from infringing it; whether Idera's cash resources will be sufficient to fund the Company's operations; and such other important factors as are set forth under the caption "Risk Factors" in Idera's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the three months ended June 30, 2010, which important factors are incorporated herein by reference. Idera disclaims any intention or obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

Erbitux is a registered trademark of ImClone Systems, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Eli Lilly and Company. Tarceva is a registered trademark of OSI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Avastin is a registered trademark of Genentech, Inc.


Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Teri Dahlman, 617-679-5519
[email protected]
MacDougall Biomedical Communications
Chris Erdman, 781-235-3060
[email protected]

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