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Agenus (AGEN) Q4 Earnings Beat Estimates, Revenues Rise Y/Y

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Agenus Inc. (AGEN - Free Report) reported fourth-quarter 2019 loss of 22 cents per share, much narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 41 cents as well as the year-ago quarter’s loss of 40 cents.

The company generated revenues of $34.5 million including non-cash royalties and royalty sales milestone, up from $6.5 million reported in the year-ago quarter. Revenues comprehensively beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $17 million.

Shares of Agenus have lost 12.7% in the past year compared with the industry’s decrease of 15.8%.

Quarterly Highlights

Research and development expenses inched up 2.2% to $36.8 million. General and administrative expenses grew 26.8% to $12.3 million.

Full-Year Results

For 2019, Agenus’ revenues of $150 million were up significantly year over year.

Loss per share was 80 cents in 2019 compared with the loss of $1.44 in 2018.

Pipeline Update

Agenus is a clinical-stage, immuno-oncology company with a comprehensive portfolio of antibody-based therapeutics, adjuvants and cancer vaccine platforms.

In a separate press release, Agenus announced that the FDA has granted a Fast Track designation to the combination of its CTLA-4 antibody zalifrelimab and PD-1 antibody balstilimab for the treatment of patients with relapsed/refractory metastatic cervical cancer.

The combo of balstilimab plus zalifrelimab demonstrated 26.5% objective response rate (ORR), which is durable (median not yet reached) for addressing patients with second-line cervical cancer.

The company expects to file two biologics license applications (BLAs) seeking accelerated approval of the balstilimab + zalifrelimab combo and balstilimab monotherapy for metastatic cervical cancer.

Meanwhile, in January 2020, Agenus initiated a phase I study on AGEN1223, a novel bi-specific antibody, designed to deplete regulatory T cells in the tumor microenvironment.

Agenus is currently responsible for developing AGEN1223. Gilead Sciences, Inc. (GILD - Free Report) has an exclusive option to license this candidate.

Notably, GlaxoSmithKline plc’s (GSK - Free Report) herpes zoster vaccine, Shingrix, which contains Agenus' proprietary immune adjuvant QS-21 Stimulon, achieved more than $1.8 billion in revenues during 2019.

Agenus Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Zacks Rank & Another Key Pick

Agenus currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Another top-ranked stock in the biotech sector is Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (REGN - Free Report) , which sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Regeneron’s earnings estimates have been revised 7.1% upward for 2020 over the past 60 days. The stock has rallied 6% in the past year.

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