Impression Healthcare Limited (ASX: IHL), a company from the health care sector and into the business of marketing and manufacturing of home-impression custom-fit mouthguards, announced that it had signed a memorandum of understanding (‘MOU’) and exclusivity agreement with RespireRx Pharmaceuticals Inc.
RespireRx Pharmaceuticals Inc is a company which is at a leading position of cannabinoid research for the treatment of sleep-disordered breathing. The agreement between IHL and Respire is the natural extension of IHL’s existing project ‘dronabinol’ as well as the distribution of the Sleep Guardian mandibular advancement device. [optin-monster-shortcode id=”swikrbu1d9j9aq0o4cko”]
At present, Respire has completed phase 2 of the clinical trial of dronabinol for treating patients suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnoea. In phase 2 of the clinical trial, there was a significant improvement seen in the Apnoea-Hypopnoea Index as well as the Epworth Sleepiness scale which is a measure of the next day sleepiness as measured amongst the trial participants.
The statistics stated that there are 4% of men and women in Australia who are suffering from symptomatic Obstructive Sleep Apnoea and the figure is increasing due to an ageing Australian population as well as their obesity. David Rapoport who is the MD Professor of Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine (United States) believes that dronabinol has a low side-effect profile, is easy to take and is effective.
Sleep apnoea is a severe sleep disorder where the patient suffers from the interrupted breathing during the sleep. It increases the risk of health problems which includes high blood pressure, stroke, heart failure, diabetes and mental disorders. In “Apnoea”, the patient suffers a complete loss of breath for 10 seconds, and in the case of “Hypopnoea”, the loss of breath lasts for 10 seconds or even more. It also hampers the daily performance of an individual as a result of fatigue. To overcome this, CPAP is considered the first line of defence where adherence of patient plays an essential role in the efficacy of CPAP treatment due to limited patient comfort and convenience. However, the patient may face pain while using a nasal mask and also difficulty in falling asleep with a CPAP device operating at a prescribed pressure. Based on this, the company stated that there are significant opportunities for alternative therapies such as Dronabinol.
Under MOU, both the companies are considering a joint venture, partnership or license and distribution agreement wherein Impression will be designated as the distributor and licensee of Dronabinol who will be responsible for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnoea in Australia, New Zealand and relevant countries in South East Asia. Also, the parties aspire to conduct further phase 3 of the clinical trial of Dronabinol for treating patients of obstructive sleep apnoea.
Mr Joel Latham who is the CEO of the Impression Healthcare is confident about Dronabinol and also highlights the potential of Dronabinol to change how Sleep Apnoea was treated across the globe.
In the last six months, the stock has generated a negative return of 1.22%. By the closure of the trading session on 15 February 2019, the closing price of IHL shares was A$0.019 which was 5.556% above its previous trading day’s closing price. The stock has a market capitalization of A$9.86 million and approximately 547.79 million outstanding shares.
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