Genprex Receives Safety Review Committee Approval to Advance to Phase 2 Expansion Portion of Acclaim-1 Clinical Trial of REQORSA® in Combination with Tagrisso® in Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer 

Results from Phase 1 Portion Indicate Favorable Safety Profile of Novel Gene Therapy in Solid Tumor Cancer

AUSTIN, Texas — (May 30, 2023) — Genprex, Inc. (“Genprex” or the “Company”) (NASDAQ: GNPX), a clinical-stage gene therapy company focused on developing life-changing therapies for patients with cancer and diabetes, today announced that it has completed the Phase 1 portion of the Acclaim-1 Phase 1/2 clinical trial of REQORSA® in combination with Tagrisso® (osimertinib) to treat late-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and the Safety Review Committee (SRC) has approved continuation to the Phase 2 expansion portion of the trial. The combination of REQORSA and osimertinib received U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Fast Track Designation for treatment of the Acclaim-1 patient population.

Based on full safety data which showed no dose limiting toxicities, the SRC determined that the recommended Phase 2 dose of REQORSA will be 0.12 mg/kg. This was the highest dose level delivered in the Phase 1 portion and is twice the highest dose level delivered in Genprex’s prior clinical trial combining REQORSA with Tarceva® for the treatment of late-stage lung cancer. The SRC also recommended the trial advance to the Phase 2 expansion portion of the study, which the Company expects to begin in the third quarter of 2023.

“We are proud of the notable progress we made during the Phase 1 portion of the Acclaim-1 clinical trial, and the SRC recommendation to move into the Phase 2 expansion portion of the trial is another validation for our REQORSA development program,” said Rodney Varner, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Genprex. “As we move into the Phase 2 expansion portion of the trial, we remain steadfast in our efforts to bring new therapies to lung cancer patients with unmet medical need.”

Genprex recently announced positive preliminary clinical data from the Phase 1 dose escalation portion of its Acclaim-1 clinical trial in an abstract published at the 2023 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting. The results showed that REQORSA was generally well tolerated, and there were no dose limiting toxicities. Genprex also reported that encouraging evidence of efficacy was observed in the Phase 1 portion of the study. The full abstract can be accessed here.

The SRC is comprised of three physicians who are principal investigators in the trial. The SRC may recommend that the trial continues at the same dose or at a lower dose, that it escalates to a higher dose, or that the study be terminated altogether due to safety concerns.

The Phase 2 expansion portion of the study is expected to enroll approximately 66 patients; half will be patients who received only prior Tagrisso treatment and the other half will be patients who received prior Tagrisso treatment and chemotherapy,  in order to determine toxicity profiles of patients with different eligibility criteria, as well as efficacy and other endpoints. There will be an interim analysis following the treatment of 19 patients in each cohort.

About Acclaim-1

The Acclaim-1 clinical trial is an open-label, multi-center Phase 1/2 clinical trial evaluating the Company’s lead drug candidate, REQORSA, in combination with Tagrisso in patients with late-stage NSCLC with activating epidermal growth factor receptor (“EGFR”) mutations whose disease progressed after treatment with Tagrisso. 

The enrollment of the dose escalation Phase 1 portion of the Acclaim-1 trial has been completed.  The Phase 2 expansion portion of the study is expected to enroll approximately 66 patients, half of whom will have received only Tagrisso treatment and the other half will have received Tagrisso treatment and chemotherapy, to determine toxicity profiles of patients with different eligibility criteria, as well as efficacy and other endpoints. There will be an interim analysis following the treatment of 19 patients in each cohort.  The Phase 2 randomized portion of the study is expected to enroll approximately 74 patients to be randomized 1:1 to receive either REQORSA and Tagrisso combination therapy or platinum-based chemotherapy. The primary endpoint of the Phase 2 portion of the trial is progression-free survival, which is defined as time from randomization to progression or death. An interim analysis will be performed at 28 events.

About REQORSA® Immunogene Therapy

REQORSA Immunogene Therapy (quaratusugene ozeplasmid) for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) uses Genprex’s unique, proprietary ONCOPREX® Nanoparticle Delivery System, which is the first systemic gene therapy delivery platform used for cancer in human clinical trials. The active agent in REQORSA is a plasmid that expresses the TUSC2  tumor suppressor gene. REQORSA consists of the TUSC2 gene expressing plasmid encapsulated in non-viral lipid nanoparticles made from lipid molecules with a positive electrical charge. REQORSA is injected intravenously and specifically targets cancer cells. Once REQORSA is taken up into a cancer cell, the TUSC2 gene is expressed, and the TUSC2 protein is capable of restoring certain defective functions arising in the cancer cell. REQORSA has a multimodal mechanism of action whereby it interrupts cell signaling pathways that cause replication and proliferation of cancer cells, re-establishes pathways for programmed cell death, or apoptosis, in cancer cells, and modulates the immune response against cancer cells.

Tagrisso® is a registered trademark of AstraZeneca plc and is its top-selling drug with 2022 sales of more than $5 billion.

About Genprex, Inc.

Genprex, Inc. is a clinical-stage gene therapy company focused on developing life-changing therapies for patients with cancer and diabetes. Genprex’s technologies are designed to administer disease-fighting genes to provide new therapies for large patient populations with cancer and diabetes who currently have limited treatment options. Genprex works with world-class institutions and collaborators to develop drug candidates to further its pipeline of gene therapies in order to provide novel treatment approaches. Genprex’s oncology program utilizes its proprietary, non-viral ONCOPREX® Nanoparticle Delivery System which encapsulates the gene-expressing plasmids using lipid nanoparticles. The resultant product is administered intravenously, where it is taken up by tumor cells that then express tumor suppressor proteins that were deficient in the tumor.The Company’s lead product candidate, REQORSA® (quaratusugene ozeplasmid), is being evaluated in three clinical trials as a treatment for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and small cell lung cancer (SCLC). Both NSCLC clinical programs received a Fast Track Designation from the Food and Drug Administration. Genprex’s diabetes gene therapy approach is comprised of a novel infusion process that uses an adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector to deliver Pdx1 and MafA genes directly to the pancreas. In models of Type 1 diabetes, GPX-002 transforms alpha cells in the pancreas into functional beta-like cells, which can produce insulin but are distinct enough from beta cells to evade the body’s immune system. In a similar approach, GPX-003 for Type 2 diabetes, where autoimmunity is not at play, is believed to rejuvenate and replenish exhausted beta cells.

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Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements 

Statements contained in this press release regarding matters that are not historical facts are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are made on the basis of the current beliefs, expectations and assumptions of management, are not guarantees of performance and are subject to significant risks and uncertainty. These forward-looking statements should, therefore, be considered in light of various important factors, including those set forth in Genprex’s reports that it files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission and which you should review, including those statements under “Item 1A – Risk Factors” in Genprex’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2022.

Because forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding: Genprex’s ability to advance the clinical development, manufacturing and commercialization of its product candidates in accordance with projected timelines; the timing and success of Genprex’s clinical trials and regulatory approvals; the effect of Genprex’s product candidates, alone and in combination with other therapies, on cancer and diabetes; Genprex’s future growth and financial status, including Genprex’s ability to continue to obtain capital to meet its long-term liquidity needs on acceptable terms, or at all; Genprex’s commercial and strategic partnerships, including those with its third party vendors, suppliers and manufacturers and their ability to successfully perform and scale up the manufacture of its product candidates; and Genprex’s intellectual property and licenses. 

These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as predictions of future events and Genprex cannot assure you that the events or circumstances discussed or reflected in these statements will be achieved or will occur. If such forward-looking statements prove to be inaccurate, the inaccuracy may be material. You should not regard these statements as a representation or warranty by Genprex or any other person that Genprex will achieve its objectives and plans in any specified timeframe, or at all. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Genprex disclaims any obligation to publicly update or release any revisions to these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date of this press release or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as required by law.

Genprex, Inc.

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