Press Release Details

Cerus Corporation Announces Fourth Quarter and 1998 Results

January, 26 1999

CONCORD, Calif., Jan. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Cerus Corporation (Nasdaq: CERS), a leading developer of systems to inactivate viruses and bacteria in transfused blood components, today announced results for the quarter and year ended December 31, 1998.

For the quarter ended December 31, 1998, the company reported revenue of $300,000, total operating expenses of $6.8 million and a net loss of $6.2 million, or $0.66 per share. These results compare with revenue of $1.4 million, operating expenses of $6.2 million and a net loss of $4.5 million, or $0.49 per share, for the quarter ended December 31, 1997.

The company also reported revenue of $2.9 million and a net loss of $29.6 million, or $3.17 per share, for the year ended December 31, 1998. These results compare with revenue of $6.9 million and a net loss of $14.7 million, or $1.76 per share, for the prior year. Total operating expenses were $33.6 million, an increase of $10.9 million over the prior year. The increase in operating expenses reflects expansion of the company's existing development programs and the introduction of new development programs.

As of December 31, 1998, the company had cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of approximately $19.8 million, compared with $21.6 million at December 31, 1997. In addition, the company has a commitment from its development partner, Baxter Healthcare Corporation, to purchase up to $9.5 million of convertible preferred stock, at the company's option, through September 30, 1999. In a separate release issued today, the company announced it has set certain preliminary parameters for its U.S. Phase 3 platelet trial, triggering Baxter's commitment to purchase an additional $2.0 million of common stock.

"I'm very encouraged by the progress we made in the past year in all three of our pathogen inactivation programs--all three core programs are in human clinical studies, including our platelet program, which is in a Phase 3 clinical trial in Europe," said Cerus President and Chief Executive Officer Stephen Isaacs. "We also made significant progress in our earlier stage programs, including a development agreement for a pathogen inactivation system for source plasma and preclinical work in our ACIT program, which we believe may improve the outcomes of bone marrow transplantation procedures. As we enter 1999, we are also pleased with our progress toward commencement of a U.S. Phase 3 clinical trial of our platelet system."

Cerus Corporation Highlights for 1998:

-- Platelet pathogen inactivation system: Initiation of a European Phase

3 clinical trial, completion of a U.S. Phase 2c patient trial and

regulatory concurrence to proceed into a U.S. Phase 3 trial;

-- Fresh frozen plasma pathogen inactivation system: Completion of a U.S.

Phase 2 trial and clearance to move into a U.S. Phase 2b patient trial;

-- Red blood cell pathogen inactivation system: Filing and acceptance of

an Investigational New Drug application and commencement of a U.S.

Phase 1a clinical trial;

-- Source plasma pathogen inactivation system: Execution of a development

agreement with the Consortium for Plasma Science, which is co-funded by

Alpha Therapeutics Corporation, Bayer Corporation, Baxter Healthcare

Corporation and Centeon;

-- Allogeneic cellular immune therapy: Presentation of preclinical data at

the American Society of Hematology meeting.

The company's pathogen inactivation systems for platelets, fresh frozen plasma and source plasma are based on the proprietary light-activated compound, S-59. The company's pathogen inactivation system for red blood cells is based on its proprietary pH-activated anchor-linker-effector (ALE) compound, S-303.

Cerus Corporation is developing systems designed to enhance the safety of blood transfusions by inactivating pathogens in blood components (platelets, plasma and red blood cells used for transfusion) and by inactivating white blood cells, which are responsible for a variety of adverse transfusion reactions. The company's platform technologies, which prevent viral, bacterial and cellular replication, may have potential applications in the health care field beyond pathogen inactivation in blood components.

Cerus Corporation is collaborating with the Fenwal Division of Baxter Healthcare Corporation to develop, manufacture and market pathogen inactivation systems for blood components used for transfusion. Baxter, a global medical products and services company, focuses on critical therapies for life-threatening conditions. Baxter is a leader in technologies related to blood and the circulatory system. The Fenwal Division develops, manufactures and markets products and services for the collection, separation, storage and transfusion of blood and its components.

Statements in this news release regarding product development and clinical development are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially from the above forward-looking statements as a result of certain factors, including the uncertainty of the timing and results of any trials, regulation by the FDA, the uncertainty of replication of animal data in humans, the uncertainty of market acceptance of any products, competitive conditions, the uncertainty of future financing and other factors discussed in the company's 1997 Annual Report on Form 10-K.




(in thousands, except per share information)


  Three Months Ended  Year Ended 
December 31, December 31, 
19981997 1998  1997 
Revenue   $272$1,429   $2,903$6,851 
Operating expenses: 
 Research and development 6,0045,394   29,78319,569 
 General and administrative779   8073,841 3,163 
  Total operating expenses6,7836,201   33,62422,732 
   Loss from operations(6,511)   (4,772) (30,721)  (15,881) 
Interest income, net   274   2931,163 1,217 
   Net loss   ($6,237)  ($4,479)($29,558) ($14,664) 
Net loss per share - 
 basic and diluted ($0.66)   ($0.49)  ($3.17)   ($1.76) 
Shares used in computing 
net loss per share 9,416 9,181 9,325 8,352 


(in thousands)


  December 31, December 31, 
Cash, cash equivalents 
 and short-term investments   $19,802 $21,581 
Accounts receivable from 
 a related party0   4,376 
Other current assets  312 214 
Furniture and equipment, 
 net of depreciation  725   1,032 
Other assets   95 112 
   Total assets   $20,934 $27,315 
Accounts payable to a 
 related party$12,719  $0 
Other current liabilities   6,859   4,797 
Capital lease obligation, 
 less current portion" 12  43 
Redeemable preferred stock  5,000   0 
Stockholders' equity  (3,656)  22,475 
   Total liabilities & 
stockholders' equity  $20,934 $27,315 

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