Why Is HOOKIPA Pharma Stock Trading Lower Today? – HOOKIPA Pharma (NASDAQ:HOOK)

HOOKIPA Pharma Inc HOOK will focus its resources on prioritizing the clinical development of a randomized trial for its HB-200 program in human papillomavirus 16 positive (HPV16+) head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and its two Gilead Science Inc GILD-partnered infectious disease cure programs for hepatitis B and human immunodeficiency virus.

In the first-line setting, the company says HB-200, in combination with Merck & Co Inc MRK Keytruda (pembrolizumab), has demonstrated antigen-specific T cell activation and has doubled the historic objective response rates of the standard-of-care treatment alone. 

The totality of the HB-200 data presents a clear opportunity for HOOKIPA to advance this program in a randomized trial starting in mid-2024.

Additionally, Roche Holdings AG RHHBY decided to terminate the collaboration and licensing agreement for HOOKIPA’s HB-700 program in KRAS mutated cancers. Effective April 25, 2024, HOOKIPA will regain full control. 

The company is planning to submit an IND for HB-700 in the first quarter of 2024 and will begin searching for a collaboration partner.

As part of its strategic refocus, HOOKIPA will pause development activities related to HB-300 and most preclinical research activities.

HOOKIPA will reduce its workforce by approximately 30% and rebalance its cost structure in alignment with the prioritization. 

HOOKIPA maintains a cash position of $117.5 million as of December 31, 2023.

In December, Gilead Sciences purchased 15 million shares of HOOKIPA Pharma for approximately $21.25 million at $1.4167 per share.

In addition, HOOKIPA can sell an additional approximately $8.75 million of common stock to Gilead as pro-rata participation in potential future equity raises

Price Action: HOOK shares are down 15% at $0.59 on the last check Monday.

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