Ligand announces that Janssen has received European Commission approval for TECVAYLI® (teclistamab) for the treatment of patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma

EMERYVILLE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:LGND) announced that Janssen Biotech, Inc. (Janssen) has received a Conditional Marketing Authorization (CMA) from the European Commission for TECVAYLI® (teclistamab) as monotherapy for the treatment of patients with relapsed or refractory (R/R) multiple myeloma. Teclistamab is a bispecific T-cell redirecting antibody targeting both B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA) and CD3 that was discovered by Janssen scientists using antibody discovery technology OmniRat from OmniAb.

Under the terms of the licensing agreement with a subsidiary of Janssen, OmniAb is eligible to receive a $10 million milestone payment upon the first commercial sale of teclistamab in the UK, Italy, Germany, France or Spain.

“The approval of Janssen’s TECVAYLI by the European Commission adds another important drug for the treatment of relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma. This is the first European approval of an OmniAb-derived antibody and the first approval of a bispecific OmniAb-derived antibody,” said Matt Foehr, President and COO of Ligand. “We look forward to continued advancements in the therapies our collaborators have discovered using the OmniAb platform.”

Ligand’s previously announced OmniAb spin-off and merger (business combination) with Avista Public Acquisition Corp. II (APAC) (NASDAQ: AHPA), a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), remain on track to close in the fourth quarter of 2022. Under the terms of the separation and distribution between Ligand and OmniAb, the milestone payments related to the first commercial sale of TECVAYLI will remain with OmniAb’s business, regardless of when and when the milestone is achieved and when the merger closes. The license agreement between OmniAb and CNA Development LLC does not include royalty payments, and OmniAb will not receive royalties on sales from TECVAYLI.

About OmniAb®

The OmniAb Discovery Platform provides Ligand’s pharmaceutical industry partners with access to diverse antibody repertoires and high-throughput screening technologies to enable the discovery of next-generation therapies. At the heart of the OmniAb platform is Biological Intelligence (BI) of our proprietary transgenic animals, including OmniRat, OmniChicken and OmniMouse, which have been genetically engineered to generate antibodies with human sequences to facilitate the development of human therapeutic candidates. OmniFlic (transgenic rat) and OmniClic (transgenic chicken) address industry needs for bispecific antibody applications through a common light chain approach, and OmniTaur features unique structural attributes of cow antibodies for complex targets. We believe OmniAb animals comprise the most diverse host systems available in the industry and are optimally exploited through computational antigen design and immunization methods, coupled with B-cell phenotypic screening. unique high-throughput and extraction of next-generation sequencing datasets with custom algorithms to identify fully human antibodies with superior performance and developability characteristics. An established core competency focused on ion channels and transporters further differentiates our technology and creates opportunities in emerging target classes. OmniAb antibodies have been exploited in all modalities, including bispecific antibodies, antibody-drug conjugates, and others. The OmniAb suite of technologies spans from BI-based repertoire generation to cutting-edge antibody discovery and optimization, delivering a highly efficient and customizable end-to-end solution for the growing discovery needs of the world. global pharmaceutical industry.

About Ligand Pharmaceuticals

Ligand is a revenue-generating biopharmaceutical company focused on developing or acquiring technologies that help pharmaceutical companies discover and develop drugs. Our business model creates shareholder value by providing a diverse portfolio of biotechnology and pharmaceutical revenue streams supported by an efficient and low enterprise cost structure. Our goal is to provide investors with an opportunity to participate in the promise of the biotech industry in a profitable, diverse and lower-risk venture than a typical biotech company. Our business model is based on what we do best: drug discovery, early stage drug development, product reformulation and partnership. We partner with other pharmaceutical companies to leverage what they do best (advanced development, regulatory management and commercialization) to ultimately drive our revenue. Ligand OmniAb® The technology platform is a patent-protected transgenic animal platform used in the discovery of fully human monoclonal and bispecific antibody therapeutics. The Captisol platform technology is a chemically modified, patent-protected cyclodextrin with a structure designed to optimize drug solubility and stability. Ligand’s Pelican expression technology is a robust, validated, cost-effective, and scalable platform for recombinant protein production that is uniquely suited for large-scale complex protein production where traditional systems are not. Ligand has established multiple alliances, licensing and other business relationships with major global pharmaceutical companies including Amgen, Merck, Pfizer, Sanofi, Takeda, Gilead Sciences and Baxter International. For more information, please visit

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Important information and where to find it

In connection with the business combination and distribution, OmniAb has filed with the SEC a registration statement on Form 10 (Form 10) (File No. 000-56427) registering shares of OmniAb common stock and APAC has filed with the SEC a registration statement on Form S-4 (Form S-4) (File No. 333-264525) registering APAC common stock, warrants and certain stock awards. The Form S-4 filed by APAC includes a proxy statement/prospectus regarding APAC shareholder voting required in connection with the business combination. The Form 10 filed by OmniAb included portions of the Form S-4 filed by APAC, which will serve as an information document/prospectus in connection with the OmniAb spin-off. This communication does not contain all the information to be taken into account regarding the Business Combination. This communication is not a substitute for the registration statements that OmniAb and APAC have filed or will file with the SEC or any other documents that APAC or OmniAb may file with the SEC, or that APAC, Ligand or OmniAb may send to shareholders under the Commercial Combination. It is not intended to form the basis of any investment decision or any other decision regarding the Business Combination. APAC stockholders, Ligand stockholders and other interested persons are advised to read the preliminary and, when available, final registration statements and the documents incorporated herein by reference, as such documents will contain important information about APAC, OmniAb and the business combination. The proxy statement/prospectus contained in APAC’s Form S-4 will be mailed to APAC shareholders on a record date to be determined to vote on the business combination.

The registration statements, proxy statement/prospectus/information statement and other documents (when available) are also available free of charge on the SEC’s website at or by sending a request to: Avista Public Acquisition Corp. II, 65 East 55th Street, 18th Floor, New York, NY 10022.

Participants in the solicitation

Ligand, APAC and OmniAb, and each of their respective directors, officers and other officers and employees may be considered participants in the solicitation of proxies from APAC shareholders in connection with the business combination. Shareholders are urged to carefully read the proxy statement/prospectus/preliminary information statement relating to the Business Combination and the final proxy statement/prospectus/information statement when they become available, as they will contain important information. Information regarding persons who may, under SEC rules, be considered participants in the solicitation of APAC shareholders in connection with the business combination is set forth in the registration statement filed with the SEC. . Information about the officers and directors of APAC and the management and directors of OmniAb is also set forth in the preliminary registration statements relating to the business combination.

No solicitation or offer

This communication will not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy securities, or the solicitation of a proxy, vote, consent or approval in any jurisdiction in connection with the Business Combination, nor will there be any sale of securities in any jurisdiction in which the offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to any registration or qualification under the securities laws of such jurisdictions. This communication is restricted by law; it is not intended for distribution or use by any person in any jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to local law or regulation.

Forward-looking statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements by Ligand that involve risks and uncertainties and reflect Ligand’s judgment as of the date of this release. Words such as “anticipates”, “believes”, “expects”, “anticipates” and “will”, and similar expressions, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include: the expected timing of OmniAb’s spin-off and merger with APAC, the parties’ ability to complete the proposed transaction, and the timing and amount of milestone payments that Ligand expects that OmniAb receives in connection with the marketing of TECVAYLI. Actual events or results may differ from Ligand’s expectations due to risks and uncertainties inherent in Ligand’s business, including, without limitation: Ligand is dependent on Janssen for the development and commercialization of TECVAYLI; the Business Combination may not be completed in accordance with the anticipated plans or the anticipated timetable or at all; and other risks described in Ligand’s prior press releases and Securities and Exchange Commission filings available at Ligand disclaims any intention or obligation to update these forward-looking statements beyond the date of this release. This warning is made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

Aurora J. William