SAN DIEGO and WARREN, N.J., Jan. 29, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: SRNE, "Sorrento") announced it has initated a clinical and manufacturing collaboration with Celularity, Inc., a Warren, New Jersey, based clinical-stage cell therapeutics company delivering transformative allogeneic cellular therapies derived from the postpartum human placenta. The objective of the collaboration is to expand the therapeutic use of Celularity's CYNK-001, an allogeneic, off-the-shelf, placental-derived Natural Killer (NK) cell therapy, to the treatment and prevention of coronavirus infections.

NK cells are the foundation of the natural innate immune response. NK cells derived from the placenta are well tolerated, intrinsically safe and versatile, allowing potential uses across a range of organs and tissues. NK cell therapy is currently being investigated as a treatment for various liquid and solid tumors, but also has the demonstrated potential to be effective against virally infected cells.

Under the contemplated collaboration, Sorrento and Celularity would assess CYNK-001 as a potential novel therapy for the treatment and prevention of coronaviruses, focusing in particular on the newly emerged 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). In addition, Sorrento would utilize current existing capacity in its “state-of-the-art” cGMP cell therapy manufacturing facilities in San Diego, California, to supplement Celularity's new cGMP facility in Florham Park, New Jersey. The combined capacity would support the rapid scale-up and sustained production of the novel cell therapy.

Sorrento is already in contact with leading scientists and local Chinese experts to discuss the clinical validation and logistics requirements to fast-track CYNK-001 cell therapy available in China for this particularly urgent indication.

Sorrento owns 25% of Celularity and the companies have a longstanding relationship. Both companies have expressed their interest in starting clinical development efforts for anti-coronavirus allogeneic NK cell therapy immediately.

About Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc. 

Sorrento is a clinical stage, antibody-centric, biopharmaceutical company developing new therapies to turn malignant cancers into manageable and possibly curable diseases. Sorrento's multimodal multipronged approach to fighting cancer is made possible by its’ extensive immuno-oncology platforms, including key assets such as fully human antibodies (“G-MAB™ library”), clinical stage immuno-cellular therapies (“CAR-T”), intracellular targeting antibodies (“iTAbs”), antibody-drug conjugates (“ADC”), and clinical stage oncolytic virus (“Seprehvir®”). 

Sorrento's commitment to life-enhancing therapies for patients is also demonstrated by our effort to advance a first-in-class (TRPV1 agonist) non-opioid pain management small molecule, resiniferatoxin (“RTX”), and ZTlido® (lidocaine topical system) 1.8% for the treatment of post-herpetic neuralgia. Resiniferatoxin is completing a phase IB trial in terminal cancer patients and a phase 1B trial in osteoarthritis patients. ZTlido® was approved by the FDA on February 28, 2018.

For more information visit www.sorrentotherapeutics.com

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release and any statements made for and during any presentation or meeting contain forward-looking statements related to Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc., under the safe harbor provisions of Section 21E of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding the expected timing for the formation of the collaboration, initiation and completion of ongoing studies for coronavirus using NK cells and data read-outs related thereto; the expected timing for commencing and completing registrational studies, and for submitting a NDA application for NK cells for the treatment and/or prevention for coronavirus; the likely doses for any upcoming pivotal studies; any potential market for NK cells for the treatment and prevention of coronavirus and Sorrento’s potential position in the anti-viral immunity industry. Risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to differ materially and adversely from those expressed in our forward-looking statements, include, but are not limited to: risks related to Sorrento's and its subsidiaries', affiliates’ and partners’ technologies and prospects and collaborations with partners, including, but not limited to, potential collaboration with Celularity, using NK cells for the treatment and prevention of coronavirus infections; risks related to seeking regulatory approvals and conducting and results of clinical trials; the clinical and commercial success of the treatment and prevention of coronavirus infections using NK cells; the viability and success of using NK cells for treatments in anti-viral therapeutic areas, including coronavirus; clinical development risks, including risks in the progress, timing, cost, and results of clinical trials and product development programs; risk of difficulties or delays in obtaining regulatory approvals; risks that clinical study results may not meet any or all endpoints of a clinical study and that any data generated from such studies may not support a regulatory submission or approval; risks related to seeking regulatory approvals and conducting clinical trials; risks of supplying drug product; risks related to leveraging the expertise of its employees, subsidiaries, affiliates and partners to assist the company in the execution of its strategies; risks related to Sorrento’s debt obligations and other risks that are described in Sorrento's most recent periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Sorrento's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018, and subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the risk factors set forth in those filings. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release and we undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statement in this press release except as required by law.

Media and Investor Relations

Contact: Alexis Nahama, DVM (SVP Corporate Development)

Telephone: 1.858.203.4120

Email: mediarelations@sorrentotherapeutics.com

About Celularity

Celularity, headquartered in Warren, N.J., is a clinical-stage cell therapeutics company delivering transformative allogeneic cellular therapies derived from the postpartum human placenta. Using proprietary technology in combination with its IMPACT™ platform, Celularity is the only company harnessing the purity and versatility of placental-derived cells to develop and manufacture innovative and highly scalable off-the-shelf treatments for patients with cancer, inflammatory and age-related diseases. To learn more, please visit www.celularity.com.

Media and Investor Relations

John R. Haines (EVP & Chief Administrative Officer)

Email: john.haines@celularity.com

Sorrento® and the Sorrento logo are registered trademarks of Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc.
ZTlido® and G-MAB™ are trademarks owned by Scilex Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Sorrento, respectively.
Seprehvir®, is a registered trademark of Virttu Biologics Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of TNK Therapeutics, Inc. and part of the group of companies owned by Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc.
All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
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