Idera Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Wednesday its profit climbed more than tenfold in the fourth quarter after it received a milestone payment from its partner Merck KGaA.
Idera earned $3.9 million, or 17 cents per share, up from $364,000, or a penny per share, in the same period a year earlier. Revenue grew 62 percent to $10.2 million from $6.3 million.
Revenue in the latest quarter included a $4.1 million payment from Merck KGaA, a German drugmaker that is working with Idera on an experimental cancer drug. Idera received the payment from Merck in December after beginning a mid-stage clinical trial of the drug candidate designated IMO-2055, also known as EMD 1201081. The drug is being tested as a secondary treatment for metastasized squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. Merck is now handling development of the drug.
Idera is also testing the drug as a treatment for non-small cell lung cancer and colorectal cancer in combination with previously approved drugs. It is also developing treatments for hepatitis C and autoimmune diseases including lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and lung inflammation.
For the full year, Idera's profit grew to $7.5 million, or 31 cents per share, from $1.5 million, or 6 cents per share. Revenue rose 31 percent to $34.5 million from $26.5 million.