“We continue to evaluate the full Phase 2 data set for NSI-189 to determine the optimal development path in major depressive disorder and for other conditions, including Angelman’s Syndrome following highly encouraging preclinical data in that setting. We expect to provide a detailed update on our corporate strategy, including development and regulatory plans, after our post-phase 2 meeting with the FDA in the first half of 2018,” commented Rich Daly, Chairman and CEO.
“Our recent financing has further extended the company’s cash runway to sufficiently support continued research on NSI-189 and to support operations. We are encouraged by the emerging clinical profile of NSI-189 and look forward to presenting additional clinical data at the upcoming American College of Neuropsychopharmacology in December.”
Recent Corporate & Clinical Highlights & Milestones
- On November 6, 2017, we strengthened our clinical research team with the appointment of David Recker, MD, as Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Recker has more than 20 years of experience in drug development in multiple therapeutic areas including CNS and cell therapy and has been involved in numerous aspects of clinical strategy development, including product registration and marketing support, clinical trial development and execution, data interpretation, key opinion leader development and support.
- On September 18, 2017, Cristina Csimma, Pharm.D, MHP joined the board of directors. Ms. Csimma brings extensive senior leadership experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, including expertise in drug development and regulatory and commercial processes.
- On July 25, 2017, the Company announced top-line results from the exploratory Phase 2 clinical trial examining the efficacy of NSI-189 at 40 mg once daily (QD) and 40 mg twice daily (BID) compared to placebo for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). The study, which utilized the two-staged sequential parallel comparison design (SPCD), did not meet its primary efficacy endpoint of a statistically significant reduction in depression symptoms on the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS). However, as reported in our topline results, the 40 mg QD dose was directionally positive on the MADRS and met statistical significance on several key secondary efficacy endpoints.
- The company plans to present the results of the analysis of the secondary endpoints from the Phase 2 clinical trial of NSI-189 in MDD at a scientific meeting in the fourth quarter of this year.
- Neuralstem plans to meet with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in the first half of 2018 to discuss the clinical development path for NSI-189.
- Neuralstem intends to submit data on NSI-566, its stem cell therapy product candidate, to FDA and to request Regenerative Medicine Advanced Technology, or RMAT, designation. The RMAT designation, intended to expedite the approval of safe and effective cell therapies, was created by the U.S. Congress as part of the recently-enacted 21st Century Cures Act. Neuralstem is evaluating NSI-566 in three indications: stroke, chronic spinal cord injury (cSCI), and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).
- On September 5, 2017, the Company was awarded two additional patents by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). These patents broadly protect methods for using neural stem cells to treat neurodegenerative disorders, a key component of the Company’s platform. The first new patent, U.S. Patent No. 9,744,194, covers methods of treating neurodegenerative disorders through transplantation of neural stem cells. The second new patent, U.S. Patent No. 9,750,769, covers neural stem cells engineered to express IGF-1, a neurotrophic molecule with broad therapeutic potential in the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.
Financial Results for the Third Quarter Ended September 30, 2017
Cash Position and Liquidity: At September 30, 2017, cash and investments was $14.1 million as compared to $11.4 million at June 30, 2017. The $2.6 million increase is due to proceeds of $5.4 million, net, from a public offering of common stock and warrants. On August 1, 2017, the Company closed a public offering of 3,000,000 shares of common stock and 2,250,000 common stock purchase warrants at a public purchase price of $2.00 per share and accompanying warrant. Gross proceeds were $6.0 million and approximately $5.4 million, net.
Operating Loss: Operating loss for the quarter ended September 30, 2017 was $2.6 million compared to a loss of $4.9 million for the same period of 2016. The decrease in operating loss for the third quarter 2017 was primarily due to a decrease in clinical trial expenses related to the completion of the Phase 2 clinical trial of NSI-189 in MDD coupled with ongoing corporate restructuring and cost reduction efforts.
Operating loss for the nine months ended September 30, 2017 was $11.0 million compared to a loss of $15.0 million for the same period of 2016. The decrease in operating loss for the nine-month period was primarily due to ongoing corporate restructuring and cost reduction efforts partially offset by increases in clinical trial expenses as the Company completed the Phase 2 clinical trial of NSI-189.
Net Loss: Net loss for the quarter ended September 30, 2017 was $0.1 million, or $0.01 per share (basic) compared to a loss of $5.2 million, or $0.59 per share (basic), on a split adjusted basis for the same period of 2016. The decrease in net loss was primarily due to a decrease in operating expenses along with a $2.7 million non-cash, gain resulting from the fair value adjustment of outstanding liability classified stock purchase warrants.
Net loss for the nine months ended September 30, 2017 was $12.4 million, or $1.00 per share (basic), compared to a loss of $15.7 million, or $1.96 per share (basic), on a split adjusted basis for the same period of 2016. The decrease in net loss was primarily due to a decrease in operating expenses and interest expense due to the maturity of long-term debt in April 2017.
R&D Expenses: The $2.2 million, or 61% decrease, in research and development expenses for the quarter ended September 30, 2017, as compared to the comparable period of 2016, was primarily attributable to a $1.7 million decrease in clinical trial expenses due to the completion of NSI-189 Phase 2 clinical trial, a $0.3 million decrease in personnel, facility and other expenses related to ongoing corporate restructuring and cost reduction efforts and a $0.2 million decrease in non-cash stock based compensation expense.
The $2.3 million, or 25% decrease, in research and development expenses for the nine months ended September 30, 2017, as compared to the comparable period of 2016, was primarily attributable to a $2.2 million decrease in personnel, facility and other expenses related to ongoing corporate restructuring and cost reduction efforts and a $0.4 million decrease in non-cash stock based compensation expense partially offset by a $0.3 million increase in clinical trial expenses related to the completion of the Phase 2 clinical trial of NSI-189.