Prescient Therapeutics Limited (ASX: PTX) is involved in the development of breakthrough personalised cancer therapies via its novel anti-cancer drug candidates, PTX-100 and PTX-200, that have shown great promise in the treatment of a range of debilitating cancers with significant unmet need.
An Overview of Busy 2019
Prescient Therapeutics made substantial progress during last year with regards to clinical advancements, collaborations, business developments including financial achievements and drug manufacturing. Let’s take a glimpse of its achievements-
- During 2019, Prescient successfully raised A$9 million capital funded by existing stakeholders and several leading US and Australian specialist life science investors.
- To create new formulations of its lead compound, Prescient Collaborated with a private US-based company and significantly expanded its robust product pipeline.
- To extend targeted therapies into exciting CAR-T applications, Prescient collaborated with a private CAR-T company, Carina Biotech.
- Prescient made substantial clinical progress in its HER2 negative breast cancer, relapsed and refractory acute myeloid leukemia & and recurrent or platinum resistant ovarian cancer trials.
- Interim durability data from the HER2 negative breast cancer study displayed positive and promising outcomes with no disease progression after two years seen in all five responders.
- Prescient expanded AML trial on grounds of solid data from the Phase 1b study and endorsement of medical investigators, to investigate the ability of PTX-200 in lower doses of chemotherapy.
- Prescient was involved in developing of a higher yielding and lower-cost manufacturing route for its second lead drug, PTX-100 to tackle considerable technical challenges associated with manufacturing.
- Prescient also remained engaged in manufacturing an additional supply of PTX-200 to address clinical trial demand.
- Prescient was focused on significant preparation for planning and later commencing a novel “basket” PK/PD study of PTX-100 in challenging cancers with high unmet needs.
- Prescient was aggressively involved in effective business development activities for promoting awareness of its programs to third parties as well as for identifying value-adding opportunities.
Tracing Prescient’s Progress during 2019
Let’s map out Prescient’s progress and developments achieved against the objectives set for 2019-
Triumph Over Inevitable Drug Development Challenges
- Prescient continues to be within budget, nevertheless it would be wise to either migrate some US trials to Australia, and/or seek investigator sponsored initiatives and grants, on account of mounting headwinds with a challenging AUD: USD exchange rate.
- Another challenge Prescient overcame relates to optimising combinations with PTX-200, for which, modifications in the protocol were made to optimise the therapeutic effect of the drug while minimizing drug:drug interactions.
- Prescient completed an unparalleled PTX-100 basket trial protocol design for both solid and haematological cancers and received feedback from great clinical and scientific team and highly experienced investigators.
- Overcoming the manufacturing challenges with its second lead drug candidate PTX-100, the company established a more efficient manufacturing process and for future manufacturing, Prescient is working with the manufacturer to on process improvement.
Prescient targeted therapies approach falls within the vicinity of significant business development interest
2019 has been an outstanding year that witnessed several major industry developments in targeted therapies, authenticating Prescient’s investment and strategy. In line with Prescient’s approach, it has been mentioned in Sachs Associates, 19th Annual Biotech in Europe Forum Session on Oncology Business Development that -
It is worth noting that this landscape continues to move in Prescient’s favor with no sign that this industry trend is going to slow down in future. Prescient’s targeted therapies target mutations that drive an array of different cancer types. Other companies that work in this targeted therapy space include TESARO, buy out by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in December 2018 for US$5.1 billion, LOXO, buy out by Eli Lilly in January 2019 in US$ 8 billion, ARRAY Biopharma, buy out by Pfizer in June 2019 in US$ 11.4 billion.
Ras Mutations Catching Industry Attention
A considerable but unmapped market opportunity for therapies focusing on Ras and RhoA mutant cancers persists which has been attracting a significant attention from industry, clinicians and researchers, post the release of the latest data on Amgen’s new cancer drug AMG-510, a KRAS inhibitor and generated Ras mutations dominating industry headlines.
It is worth noting that Prescient has a strong competitive edge over its peers. Below are the listed Ras peers-
Prescient’s Personalised Medicine Strategy - Going Beyond Targeted Therapies into CAR-T Applications
Prescient recently collaborated with Adelaide based, Carina Biotech which is involved in the production of Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cell (CAR-T) therapy.
This collaboration offers a huge area of opportunity while seeking to address some of the current challenges of CAR-T therapy, bringing together Prescient’s knowledge of targeted therapies with Carina’s cell therapies to improve CAR-T approaches. Any resulting intellectual property arising from the collaboration will be shared by both Prescient and Carina.
Overall, 2019 has been another year of Prescient’s strong progress with funding in place and PTX-200 undergoing three clinical studies; anticipating results soon and PTX-100 trial progressing & uniquely placed in hot Ras space. Both PTX-100 and PTX-200 have potential advantages over competitors’ approaches.
With a market capitalisation of $32.33 million and 394.26 million outstanding shares, PTX was trading at $0.084, up 2.4% on 25 November 2019 (AEST: 03:23 PM). In the past 3 months, PTX has delivered a whopping 105% returns to its shareholders.
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