Kezar Life Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:KZR) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Nov 12, 2019 • 08:30 am ET


Kezar Life Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:KZR) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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John Fowler

been experimenting with VELCADE have already expressed their desire that see a safer version of that drug, and that is what we believe we have with KZR-616. Because of its productivity, we view KZR-616 as a pipeline in a drug with the potential to target a wide range of autoimmune diseases. Not content to be a single asset company, Kezar is also pioneering small molecule approaches against another novel targets that Sec61 translocon. Now, we won't be able to talk about it on this call and invite you all to learn more about our new clinical candidate KZR-261 on our website and at ASH in a few time where we'll have one poster and two oral presentation.

When I pass the call over to Chris, you'll learn all about the encouraging safety and tolerability of KZR-616 as well as the consistently positive clinical activity and PD/PK activity of this drug. I'll also walk you through highlights of our clinical strategy, which is focused on severe autoimmune diseases with very high degrees of unmet need. While each was picked because of strong mechanistic rationale, each of our target diseases while largely orphan indications are prevalent enough to represent very compelling commercial opportunities.

And finally, we're well capitalized with the cash outlay to gets us into mid-2021. So with that, I'll turn it over to Chris to review the science behind KZR-616 and the new data being presented at ACR today. Thank you very much.

Christopher Kirk

Thank you, John. Before we dig into the data we're presenting today at the ACR conference, I wanted to review a little bit of the biology and mechanism of action of KZR-616 and then we'll dig into the PD safety and efficacy that we're seeing in our lupus patient study. So a reminder for those not quite so familiar with immunoproteasome biology, as you well -- most of you well know with approved proteasome inhibitors in multiple myeloma like VELCADE and KYPROLIS, there is targeting of both forms of the proteasome found in our body, the widely expressed constitutive proteasome and the more restrictedly expressed immunoproteasome found predominantly in cells of the immune system.

Two years of science and a lot of chemistry, we designed KZR-616 to target two subunits of the immunoproteasome, therefore sparing the constitutive proteasome, leading to selective inhibition within animals and humans of immunoproteasome subunits, predominantly the LMP7 and LMP2 subunits. We came to this profile through a research and through studying the clinical activity of off-label use of bortezomib in patients with autoimmune disorders. Selective inhibitors of the immunoproteasome very, very -- are very different in terms of the cellular outcomes from their constitutives and immunoproteasome dual inhibiting counterparts in multiple myeloma.

VELCADE and KYPROLIS, in dues was called as unfolded protein response, causes the buildup of proteins inside of cell, including multiple myeloma cells, ultimately leading to cell death. Selective inhibition of immunoproteasome is not cytotoxic. Instead what we have shown over the years and presented at the ACR at the