2017 was an exceptional year for Cyxone. In addition to running our original project – T20K for multiple sclerosis – we made progress in obtaining a clinical license for Rabeximod, a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, for which we are in the process of planning a Phase 2B clinical trial. On top of all this, we began to explore other projects.
As we now get underway for 2018, I would like to summarise last year’s performance and then provide a snapshot of our plans going forward.
Development work on T20K progressed in 2017 as planned. This meant that we conducted the first phase of the toxicology programme, including: effectiveness studies, analysis development, T20K synthesis for animal testing, and prior to Phase 1 trials, substance characterisation, and kinetic and distribution studies. During 2018, the goal is to carry out the first clinical studies of T20K in humans. Cyxone has also had the pleasure of presenting T20K to drug companies based in Asia, Europe, and the US.
The company has also introduced its new development substance, Rabeximod, to international drug companies and investors. Drug companies are optimistic that Cyxone will produce a potentially competitive alternative to today’s products for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Much work has been done to describe Cyxone’s development potential to leading institutional investors outside Sweden. In addition to raising capital for Cyxone’s upcoming Phase 2B trials of Rabeximod in patients with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis in the short term, the company’s visibility in an international context is also growing which supports the development of the company and facilitates future licensing deals.
Cyxone has attracted considerable interest in Europe and the US, most recently at the J P Morgan/Biotech Showcase in San Francisco last week. Raising capital from institutional investors usually takes more time than at, for example, a so-called “private placement” because every investment is typically larger and the investment horizon greater. As the company has previously announced, the board considers that this “internationalisation” of the ownership base is positive for the company, in the short- and long-term.
Development of animal models for IBD
Cyxone’s new pilot study with a cyclotide animal model for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is proceeding as planned and results are expected in March. As the company announced in December 2017, accumulation of T20K in the bowel is extremely promising because the bowel is an organ that is directly related to IBD. The results of the study will form the basis of how a potential development programme in IBD could be structured.
We look forward to an exciting and productive 2018 with two substances in clinical phase trials and possibly one in pre-clinical development.
Malmö 17 January 2018
Kjell G Stenberg