Pharmaxis to Focus on Partnering; Sells Phase I Drug Candidate to Boehringer


Pharmaxis recently announced its transition to a strategic business plan with an increased focus on innovation and partnering in order to generate value. The new direction follows the completion of 2 years of restructuring that included partnering the Pharmaxis lead product Bronchitol in major markets worldwide, cutting the company’s expense base and employee numbers and the sale of an early stage drug asset to Boehringer Ingelheim.

“Restructuring Pharmaxis and withdrawing from a direct commercial presence in global markets whilst preserving value and creating the foundations for future growth has
been a significant challenge,” said Pharmaxis CEO Gary Phillips. “We have now put Bronchitol on a path to profitability and reduced our cash burn, in order to focus on earlier stage development projects, such as the SSAO and LOXL2 inhibitor programs.”

The key elements of the Pharmaxis business plan announced include the following:

New strategic direction – to build a regional biotech centre of excellence in fibrosis and inflammation
• Multiple drugs from in‐house amine oxidase platform developed to Phase I or II
• Collaborate where necessary to de‐risk and accelerate internal and external programs
• Licence out to Big Pharma with attractive first-in-class drugs post Phase I or II

Short to mid‐term opportunities
• Milestone payments from Boehringer as PXS4728A progresses
• LOXL2 collaboration to Phase I or II and subsequent partnering
• Three additional drug programs in the drug discovery pipeline
• A stake in the US commercialization of Bronchitol (funded by partner) and sales by distributors in the rest of the world

Financial strength
• Restructured Bronchitol business to reduce investment (>50%) and shorten time to profitability
• Pro forma March 31, 2015, balance sheet cash at $62 million

“The transaction with Boehringer represents a new chapter for Pharmaxis and validates both our scientific and partnering capability,” said Pharmaxis Chairman Malcolm McComas. “By more than doubling our cash reserves, it also gives us the opportunity to realize significant value for shareholders, not only from the PXS4728A deal, but also Bronchitol and our research pipeline.”

Pharmaxis is a specialist pharmaceutical company with a portfolio of products at various
stages of development and approval. Its product Bronchitol for cystic fibrosis is marketed in Europe and Australia, and a Phase III trial to enable completion of an NDA for the US market is underway. Its product Aridol for the assessment of asthma is sold in Europe, Australia, and Asia. The company’s development pipeline is centered around its expertise in amine oxidase chemistry and includes semicarbazide‐sensitive amine oxidase inhibitors (SSAO) for non‐alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and inflammatory diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and lysyl oxidase Inhibitors (LOX) targeting fibrotic diseases, including pulmonary fibrosis and some cancers. For more information, visit www.pharmaxis.com.au.

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