Stock Update (NASDAQ:IDRA): Idera Pharmaceuticals Inc Announces Appointment of Jonathan Yingling, Ph.D. as Senior Vice President of Early Development


Idera Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:IDRA) announced the appointment of Jonathan Yingling, Ph.D. as Senior Vice President of Early Development.  Dr. Yingling was most recently the Chief Scientific Officer of Bind Therapeutics, Inc., and had previously served as Vice President of Oncology Discovery and Translational Research at Bristol Myers Squibb and Company.  In this newly created position, Dr. Yingling will lead and execute the early development strategy and programs necessary to validate further immune-oncology indications for IMO-2125 as well driving the overall third-generation antisense (3GA) platform technology strategy.

“As we have continued to evolve as an organization focused on delivering solutions to patients suffering from rare diseases and cancers, it’s increasingly clear that Idera and its future can significantly benefit from Jonathan’s expertise and track record of strategic direction and development of candidates from early research stage into clinical development,” stated Vincent Milano, Idera’s Chief Executive Officer.  “A world of opportunity stands in front of us for both IMO-2125 and the 3GA platform and Jonathan has proven throughout his career a gift for identifying and driving those opportunities forward into successful commercial value drivers.”

In addition to his tenures at Bind Therapeutics and Bristol Myers Squibb & Company, Dr. Yingling had spent over a decade leading significant oncology development activities as well as drug candidate identification and M&A activities at Eli Lilly and Company.  Dr. Yingling received his Ph.D. from Duke University and his Bachelor of Science from the College of William and Mary.

“I am thrilled to be joining Idera at this pivotal time when drug candidates are beginning to demonstrate their promise in a clinical environment,” stated Dr. Yingling.  “Both IMO-2125 and the 3GA platform have tremendous expansion potential and I am thrilled to be here today to lead the strategic direction of those expansions.”

Inducement Grant Under NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c)(4)

In connection with the hiring of Dr. Yingling, the Board of Directors of the Company approved the grant to Dr. Yingling of a stock option to purchase 275,000 shares of the Company’s common stock.  The option was granted as an inducement equity award outside the Company’s 2013 Stock Incentive Plan and was made as an inducement material to Dr. Yingling’s acceptance of employment with the company.  The option will have an exercise price equal to the closing price of the Company’s common stock on February 6, 2017.  The option has a ten year term and vests over four years, with 25% of the original number of shares vesting on February 6, 2018 and an additional 6.25% of the original number of shares vesting at the end of each successive quarter thereafter, subject to Dr. Yingling’s continued service with the Company through the applicable vesting dates.

Shares of Idera Pharmaceuticals closed last Friday at $1.51, up $0.04 or 2.72%. IDRA has a 1-year high of $3.33 and a 1-year low of $1.19. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $1.52 and its 200-day moving average is $1.81. On the ratings front, Cowen analyst Boris Peaker assigned a Hold rating on IDRA, in a report issued on December 30.

According to TipRanks.com, Peaker has a yearly average loss of 0.6%, a 37% success rate, and is ranked #3328 out of 4374 analysts.

Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a clinical stage biotechnology company, which is engaged in discovery, development and commercialization of novel nucleic acid therapeutics to treat patients with serious and life-threatening diseases. The company uses two distinct proprietary drug discovery technology platforms to design and develop drug candidates: Toll-like receptor targeting technology and third-generation antisense technology.