Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Basis of Presentation and Significant Accounting Policies

Basis of Presentation and Significant Accounting Policies
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2017
Accounting Policies [Abstract]  
Basis of Presentation and Significant Accounting Policies

2. Basis of Presentation and Significant Accounting Policies

Principles of Consolidation

The consolidated financial statements include the accounts of the Company and its wholly-owned subsidiaries. All intercompany accounts and transactions among consolidated entities were eliminated upon consolidation.

Liquidity and Financial Condition

With the exception of the year ended December 31, 2017, the Company has typically incurred significant operating losses and negative cash flows from operations since its inception. As of December 31, 2017, the Company had cash and cash equivalents of $43.5 million. The Company has evaluated and concluded there are no conditions or events, considered in the aggregate, that raise substantial doubt about its ability to continue as a going concern for a period of one year following the date that these financial statements are issued.

Use of Estimates

The preparation of financial statements in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenue and expenses, and related disclosures. On an ongoing basis, management evaluates its estimates including, but not limited to, those related to contingent warrant liabilities, revenue recognition, debt amendments, long-lived assets, restructuring liabilities, legal contingencies, and stock-based compensation. The Company bases its estimates on historical experience and on various other market-specific and other relevant assumptions that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may differ significantly from these estimates, such as the Company’s billing under government contracts and the Company’s accrual for clinical trial expenses. Under the Company’s contracts with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (“NIAID”), a part of the National Institutes of Health (“NIH”), the Company bills using NIH provisional rates and thus is subject to future audits at the discretion of NIAID’s contracting office. These audits can result in an adjustment to revenue previously reported which potentially could be significant. In March 2016, the Company effected the novation of its remaining active contract with NIAID to Ology Bioservices, Inc. (“Ology Bioservices”) (formerly known as Nanotherapeutics, Inc.) (see Note 6). The billings made prior to the effective date of the novation of such contract are still subject to future audits, which may result in significant adjustments to reported revenues.

Revenue Recognition

Revenue is recognized when the four basic criteria of revenue recognition are met: (1) persuasive evidence of an arrangement exists; (2) delivery has occurred or services have been rendered; (3) the fee is fixed or determinable; and (4) collectability is reasonably assured. The determination of criteria (2) is based on management’s judgments regarding whether a continuing performance obligation exists. The determination of criteria (3) and (4) are based on management’s judgments regarding the nature of the fee charged for products or services delivered and the collectability of those fees.

The Company recognizes revenue from its license arrangements, and royalties. In prior years, the Company had also recognized revenues for reimbursements of research and development costs under collaboration agreements as the services were performed. Revenue arrangements with multiple elements are divided into separate units of accounting if certain criteria are met, including whether the delivered element has stand-alone value to the partner and whether there is objective and reliable evidence of the fair value of the undelivered items. Each deliverable in the arrangement is evaluated to determine whether it meets the criteria to be accounted for as a separate unit of accounting or whether it should be combined with other deliverables. In order to account for the multiple-element arrangements, the Company identifies the deliverables included within the arrangement and evaluates which deliverables represent separate units of accounting. Analyzing the arrangement to identify deliverables requires the use of judgment, and each deliverable may be an obligation to deliver services, a right or license to use an asset, or another performance obligation. The consideration received is allocated among the separate units of accounting based on their respective fair values and the applicable revenue recognition criteria are applied to each of the separate units. Advance payments received in excess of amounts earned are classified as deferred revenue until earned.

License Fees

Revenue from non-refundable license, technology access or other payments under license agreements are recognized over the estimated period when the transfer of related materials, process and know-how should be delivered to the licensee. After the delivery of the materials, process and know-how to the licensee, the Company has no continuing obligation to perform under the license agreements.

License agreements with certain third parties also provide for contingent payments to be paid to the Company based solely upon the performance of the partner. For such contingent payments revenue is recognized upon completion of the milestone event, once confirmation is received from the third party, provided that collection is reasonably assured and the other revenue recognition criteria have been satisfied.

Contract and Other Revenues

Contract revenue for research and development involved the Company providing research and development services to collaborative parties or others. Cost reimbursement revenue under collaborative agreements was recorded as contract and other revenues and was recognized as the related research and development costs were incurred, as provided for under the terms of these agreements. Revenue for certain contracts was accounted for by a proportional performance, or output-based, method where performance was based on estimated progress toward elements defined in the contract. The amount of contract revenue and related costs recognized in each accounting period were based on management’s estimates of the proportional performance during the period. Adjustments to estimates based on actual performance were recognized on a prospective basis and did not result in reversal of revenue should the estimate to complete had been extended.

Up-front fees associated with contract revenue were recorded as license fees and were recognized in the same manner as the final deliverable, which was generally ratably over the period of the continuing performance obligation. Given the uncertainties of research and development collaborations, significant judgment was required to determine the duration of the arrangement.


Royalty revenue and royalty receivables are recorded in the periods these royalty amounts are earned, if estimable and collectability is reasonably assured. The royalty revenue and receivables recorded in these instances are based upon communication with the Company’s licensees, historical information and forecasted sales trends.

Sale of Future Revenue Streams


The Company has sold its rights to receive certain milestones and royalties on product sales. In the circumstance where the Company has sold its rights to future milestones and royalties under a license agreement and also maintains limited continuing involvement in the arrangement (but not significant continuing involvement in the generation of the cash flows that are due to the purchaser), the Company defers recognition of the proceeds it receives for the milestone or royalty stream and recognizes such deferred revenue as contract and other revenue over the life of the underlying license agreement. The Company recognizes this revenue under the "units-of-revenue" method. Under this method, amortization for a reporting period is calculated by computing a ratio of the proceeds received from the purchaser to the total payments expected to be made to the purchaser over the term of the agreement, and then applying that ratio to the period’s cash payment.

Estimating the total payments expected to be received by the purchaser over the term of such arrangements requires management to use subjective estimates and assumptions. Changes to the Company’s estimate of the payments expected to be made to the purchaser over the term of such arrangements could have a material effect on the amount of revenues recognized in any particular period.

Research and Development Expenses

The Company expenses research and development costs as incurred. Research and development expenses consist of direct costs such as salaries and related personnel costs, material and supply costs, and research-related allocated overhead costs, such as facilities costs. In addition, research and development expenses have included costs related to clinical trials. Such amounts are expensed as incurred.


Stock-Based Compensation

The Company recognizes compensation expense for all stock-based payment awards made to the Company’s employees, consultants and directors that are expected to vest based on estimated fair values. The valuation of stock option awards is determined at the date of grant using the Black-Scholes Option Pricing Model (the “Black-Scholes Model”). The Black-Scholes Model requires inputs such as the expected term of the option, expected volatility and risk-free interest rate. To establish an estimate of expected term, the Company considers the vesting period and contractual period of the award and its historical experience of stock option exercises, post-vesting cancellations and volatility. The estimate of expected volatility is based on the Company’s historical volatility. The risk-free rate is based on the yield available on United States Treasury zero-coupon issues corresponding to the expected term of the award.

The Company records compensation expense for service-based awards over the vesting period of the award on a straight-line basis. For awards with performance-based conditions, the Company records the expense over the remaining service period when management determines that achievement of the milestone is probable. Management evaluates when the achievement of a performance-based condition is probable based on the expected satisfaction of the performance conditions as of the reporting date. The amount of stock-based compensation expense recognized during a period is based on the value of the portion of the awards that are ultimately expected to vest.

The valuation of restricted stock units (“RSUs”) is determined at the date of grant using the Company’s closing stock price.

In January 2017, the Company adopted Accounting Standards Update (“ASU”) No. 2016-09, Compensation—Stock Compensation (Topic 718): Improvements to Employee Share-Based Payment Accounting, (“ASU 2016-09”). ASU 2016-09 is aimed at the simplification of several aspects of the accounting for employee share-based payment transactions, including accounting for forfeitures, income tax consequences, classification of awards as either equity or liabilities, and classification on the statement of cash flows. Pursuant to the adoption of ASU 2016-09, the Company has made an election to record forfeitures when they occur. Previously, stock-based compensation was based on the number of awards expected to vest after considering estimated forfeitures. The change in accounting principle with regards to forfeitures was adopted using a modified retrospective approach. The adoption of ASU 2016-09 did not have a material impact on the Company’s consolidated financial statements.

Restructuring and Impairment Charges

Restructuring costs are primarily comprised of severance costs related to workforce reductions, contract termination costs and asset impairments. The Company recognizes restructuring charges when the liability has been incurred, except for employee termination benefits that are incurred over time. Generally, employee termination benefits (i.e., severance costs) are accrued at the date management has committed to a plan of termination and employees have been notified of their termination dates and expected severance payments. Key assumptions in determining the restructuring costs include the terms and payments that may be negotiated to terminate certain contractual obligations and the timing of employees leaving the Company. Other costs, including contract termination costs, are recorded when the arrangement is terminated. Asset impairment charges have been, and will be, recognized when management has concluded that the assets have been impaired.

Cash and Cash Equivalents

The Company considers all highly liquid debt instruments with maturities of three months or less at the time the Company acquires them and that can be liquidated without prior notice or penalty to be cash equivalents.


Property and Equipment

Property and equipment is stated at cost less depreciation. Equipment depreciation is calculated using the straight-line method over the estimated useful lives of the assets (three years). Leasehold improvements were depreciated using the straight-line method over the shorter of the lease terms or the useful lives. Amortization expense for assets acquired through capital leases was included in depreciation expense in the consolidated statements of comprehensive income (loss). Upon the sale, retirement or disposal of assets, the cost and related accumulated depreciation and amortization are removed from the consolidated balance sheets, and the resulting gain or loss, if any, is reflected in other income (expense), net in the consolidated statements of comprehensive income (loss). Repairs and maintenance costs are charged to expense as incurred.

The carrying value of the property and equipment is reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the asset may not be recoverable. An impairment loss would be recognized when estimated future cash flows expected to result from the use of the asset and its eventual disposition is less than its carrying amount. During the years ended December 31, 2017 and 2016, the Company recognized impairment charges of $0.2 million and $0.2 million, respectively.



The Company had issued warrants to purchase shares of its common stock in connection with financing activities. The Company accounted for some of these warrants as a liability at fair value and others as equity at fair value. The fair value of the outstanding warrants was estimated using the Black-Scholes Model. The Black-Scholes Model required inputs such as the expected term of the warrants, expected volatility and risk-free interest rate. These inputs were subjective and required significant analysis and judgment to develop. For the estimate of the expected term, the Company used the full remaining contractual term of the warrant. The Company determined the expected volatility assumption in the Black-Scholes Model based on historical stock price volatility observed on the Company’s underlying stock. The assumptions associated with contingent warrant liabilities were reviewed each reporting period and changes in the estimated fair value of these contingent warrant liabilities were recognized in revaluation of contingent warrant liabilities within the consolidated statements of comprehensive income (loss).

Income Taxes

The Company accounts for income taxes using the liability method under which deferred tax assets and liabilities are determined based on differences between financial reporting and tax bases of assets and liabilities and are measured using the enacted tax rates and laws that will be in effect when the differences are expected to reverse. Valuation allowances are established when necessary to reduce deferred tax assets to the amount which is more likely than not to be realizable.

The recognition, derecognition and measurement of a tax position is based on management’s best judgment given the facts, circumstances and information available at each reporting date. The Company’s policy is to recognize interest and penalties related to the underpayment of income taxes as a component of income tax expense. To date, there have been no interest or penalties charged in relation to the unrecognized tax benefits.

Net Income (Loss) per Share Available to Common Stockholders

Basic net income (loss) per share available to common stockholders is based on the weighted average number of shares of common stock outstanding during the period. During periods of income, the Company allocates participating securities a proportional share of net income, after deduction of a deemed dividend on preferred stock, determined by dividing total weighted average participating securities by the sum of the total weighted average number of common stock and participating securities (the “two-class method”). The Company’s convertible preferred stock participates in any dividends declared by the Company on its common stock and are therefore considered to be participating securities. For the year ended December 31, 2017, the convertible preferred stock had a deemed dividend which represented the accretion of a beneficial conversion feature. As such, the net income for the year ended December 31, 2017 was adjusted for the convertible preferred stock deemed dividend related to the beneficial conversion feature on these shares at issuance. During periods of loss, the Company allocates no loss to participating securities because they have no contractual obligation to share in the losses of the Company. Diluted net income (loss) per share available to common stockholders is based on the weighted average number of shares outstanding during the period, adjusted to include the assumed conversion of preferred stock, and the exercise of certain stock options, RSUs, and warrants for common stock. The calculation of diluted income (loss) per share available to common stockholders requires that, to the extent the average market price of the underlying shares for the reporting period exceeds the exercise price of any outstanding options, RSUs or warrants and the presumed exercise of such securities are dilutive to earnings (loss) per share available to common stockholders for the period, adjustments to net income (loss) used in the calculation are required to remove the change in fair value of the warrants for the period. Likewise, adjustments to the denominator are required to reflect the related dilutive shares. (See Note 11).


Comprehensive Income (Loss)

Comprehensive income (loss) is comprised of two components: net income (loss) and other comprehensive income (loss). Other comprehensive income (loss) refers to gains and losses that under U.S. GAAP are recorded as an element of stockholders’ equity, but are excluded from net income (loss). The Company did not record any transactions within other comprehensive income (loss) in the periods presented and, therefore, the net income (loss) and comprehensive income (loss) were the same for all periods presented.


Recent Accounting Pronouncements

In May 2014, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) issued guidance codified in Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) 606, Revenue Recognition — Revenue from Contracts with Customers, which amends the guidance in ASC 605, Revenue Recognition. The standard’s core principle is that a company will recognize revenue when it transfers promised goods or services to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration to which the company expects to be entitled in exchange for those goods or services. In August 2015, the FASB issued an accounting update to defer the effective date by one year for public entities such that it is now applicable for annual and interim periods beginning after December 15, 2017. Early adoption is permitted for periods beginning after December 15, 2016. ASC 606 also permits two methods of adoption: retrospectively to each prior reporting period presented (full retrospective method), or retrospectively with the cumulative effect of initially applying the guidance recognized at the date of initial application (the modified retrospective method). The Company is required to adopt the standard on January 1, 2018. To date, the Company has primarily derived its revenues from various license and collaboration arrangements and sale of future royalties. The consideration the Company is eligible to receive under these agreements includes upfront payments, milestone payments and royalties. Each of the Company’s agreements has unique terms that will need to be evaluated separately under ASC 606. The Company has completed its assessment of its active license and collaboration agreements and sale of future royalty arrangements, the impact of the new guidance on its consolidated financial statements, as well as the evaluation of the disclosure requirements under the new standard. The Company will adopt the new standard using the modified retrospective method. The Company has evaluated the accounting, transition and disclosure requirements of the new standard and does not expect it to have a material impact on the Company’s consolidated financial statements.

In February 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-02, Leases (Topic 842), (“ASU 2016-02”). Under ASU 2016-02, a lessee will be required to recognize assets and liabilities for leases with lease terms of more than 12 months. Recognition, measurement, and presentation of expenses and cash flows arising from a lease by a lessee primarily will depend on its classification as a finance or operating lease. ASU 2016-02 will require both types of leases to be recognized on the balance sheet. The ASU also will require disclosures to help investors and other financial statement users better understand the amount, timing, and uncertainty of cash flows arising from leases. These disclosures include qualitative and quantitative requirements, providing additional information about the amounts recorded in the financial statements. ASU 2016-02 is effective for the Company for all interim and annual reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2018. Early adoption is permitted. The Company is in the process of assessing the impact of ASU No. 2016-02 on its consolidated financial statements.

In August 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-15, Statement of Cash Flows (Topic 230): Classification of Certain Cash Receipts and Cash Payments (a consensus of the FASB Emerging Issues Task Force), (“ASU 2016-15”). ASU 2016-15 addresses eight specific cash flow issues including debt prepayment or debt extinguishment costs, settlement of zero-coupon debt instruments or other debt instruments with coupon interest rates that are insignificant in relation to the effective interest rate of the borrowing and contingent consideration payments made after a business combination. ASU 2016-15 is effective for all interim and annual reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2017. Early adoption is permitted. The Company does not expect the adoption of ASU 2016-15 to have a material impact on its consolidated statements of cash flows.

In May 2017, the FASB issued ASU No. 2017-09, Compensation - Stock Compensation (Topic 718): Scope of Modification Accounting, (“ASU 2017-04”). ASU 2017-09 streamlines the application of modification accounting by stating that when making a change to the terms or conditions of a share-based payment award, a company should apply modification accounting to the award, unless each of the following conditions is met: 1. The fair value (or calculated value or intrinsic value, if such an alternative measurement method is used) of the modified award is the same as the fair value (or calculated value or intrinsic value, if such an alternative measurement method is used) of the original award immediately before the original award is modified. If the modification does not affect any of the inputs to the valuation technique that the entity uses to value the award, the entity is not required to estimate the value immediately before and after the modification, and 2. The vesting conditions of the modified award are the same as the vesting conditions of the original award immediately before the original award is modified, and 3. The classification of the modified award as an equity instrument or a liability instrument is the same as the classification of the original award immediately before the original award is modified. ASU 2017-09 is effective for all interim and annual reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2017. Early adoption is permitted. The Company does not expect the adoption of ASU 2017-09 to have a material impact on its consolidated financial statements.