Nektar Therapeutics (NKTR)

Q2 2010 Earnings Call

July 28, 2010 10:00 am ET


Jennifer Ruddock - VP, IR & Corporate Affairs

Howard Robin - President & CEO

John Nicholson - SVP & CFO

Lorianne Masuoka - SVP & CMO

Steve Doberstein - SVP & CSO


Jim Tumbrink - BMO Capital

John Sonnier - William Blair

Ian Sanderson - Cowen & Company

Pamela Bassett - Cantor Fitzgerald



Good day ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the Q2 2010 Nektar Therapeutics financial results call. My name is Glen and I will be your coordinator for today. At this time all participants are in a listen-only mode. We will be facilitating a question-and-answer session towards the end of today’s conference. (Operator Instructions). I’d like turn the presentation over to your host for today’s conference, Ms. Jennifer Ruddock. Please proceed, ma’am.

Jennifer Ruddock

Thank you. Good afternoon and thank you for joining us for Nektar Therapeutics second quarter 2010 financial results conference call. With us today are Howard Robin, our President and CEO, John Nicholson, our Chief Financial Officer, Bharatt Chowrira our Chief Operating Officer; Dr. Lorianne Masuoka, our Chief Medical Officer; and Stephen Doberstein, our Chief Scientific Officer.

Before we get started please note that in today’s discussion we will make forward-looking statements regarding the value and potential of our advanced polymer chemistry technology platforms. The timing and availability of future results from our clinical program, the potential and timing of future regulatory submissions, the status and future plan for certain of our partnered program in research and clinical development, the timing and potential for completion of certain transaction, the market potential of our drug candidates and development; potential future revenues that maybe realized under one or more of our collaboration agreements; our financial guidance for 2010; and certain other featured events and opportunities relating to our company.

These forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties that are detailed in Nektar’s reports and other filings with the SEC, including our Form 10-Q quarterly report filed with the SEC on May 5th 2010, and our report on Form 8-K filed today.

Actual events could differ materially from these forward-looking statements. We assume no obligation to update any forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or development. A webcast of this call is available for replay on the IR page of Nektar’s website at With that I would like to hand the call over to our CEO Howard Robin. Howard?

Howard Robin

Thank you Jennifer. Thanks to everyone for joining us today. Nektar has built a strong and impressive R&D pipeline based on our proven advanced polymer conjugate technology platform. Over this past year, we’ve advanced several clinical candidates and achieved clinical validation in two distinct areas of our technology with small molecules.

I will talk more about these important advances in a minute. Today, I would also like to update you on specific achievements in the second quarter of 2010, including the very exciting day that we announced for NKTR-102 in both breast and ovarian cancers.

Finally, we’ll also highlight a number of upcoming data milestones and anticipated future events for Nektar. Our pipeline now has numerous drugs in various stages of development ranging from preclinical compounds to candidates preparing for Phase III. As this pipeline advances, Nektar could see our first commercial launch as early as 2012.

The number of drug candidates advanced by Nektar in just three years, highlights the unique potential of our polymer conjugation technology. This proprietary platform is highly flexible and powerful drug discovering engine and it could be applied to both large and small molecules in different therapeutic classes to create new chemical entities.

Our technology puts us in an enviable position within a biopharmaceutical industry, allowing us create a steady stream of innovative and potentially valuable product opportunities.

Literally hundreds of drugs, both protein and small molecules could be candidates for our technology platform. And because we begin our discovery process with well-understood pharmacophores, we are able to greatly reduce the target biology risks associated with drug candidates and focus instead on changing, improving and extending their action within the body.

In oncology we are using our releasable conjugate approach to create targeted cytotoxic prodrugs such as NKTR-102, NKTR-105 and NKTR-107. With these products we’ve focused on increasing efficiency and improving powerability by putting the optimal amount of active chemotherapeutic in the right place at the right time.

We are particularly excited about the recent data for NKTR-102 presented at the Oral Gynecologic session at ASCO as well as our emerging data in breast cancer. Cytotoxic drugs represent a $12 billion global market and these drugs are the primary way in which cancer is treated. If you look at the number of cancer treatments each year, chemotherapies as monotherapy or in combination regimens dwarf the use of targeted agents.

Chemotherapy are the most important tumor killers used in the fight against cancer. For example topoisomerase I inhibitors are very potent anti-cancer agents, but they have a very poor half life and have greatly limited their effectiveness.

They also cause significant dose-limiting their use. Because many experts have said if you can dramatically improve the PK profile of a topo 1 inhibitor, you can have an incredibly powerful anti-cancer compounds.

NKTR-102 is an excellent example of how we’ve done exactly that and used our technology to transform the pharmacologic profile in an elegant and efficient way creating a highly-valuable new chemical entity and what we’ve done with the NKTR-102 could also be done with a wide range of other small molecule chemotherapies to create the next generation of this class of agents.

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