Neurologix Announces Successful Phase 2 Trial of Gene Therapy for Parkinson's Disease
Neurologix Receives Notice of Allowance of Patent Grant for Epilepsy Therapeutic Approach
Clark A. Johnson
Mr. Johnson was appointed as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company on March 10, 2010. Mr. Johnson has been a director of the Corporation since February 2004. He has been the Chairman of PSS World Medical, Inc., a national distributor of medical equipment and supplies to physicians, hospitals, nursing homes, and diagnostic imaging facilities since October 2000. From August 1985 to June 1998, Mr. Johnson served as Chief Executive Officer of Pier 1 Imports, a specialty retailer of imported decorative home furnishings, gifts and related items, also becoming Chairman in 1988. Currently, Mr. Johnson serves on the board of directors of various private companies, including REFAC Optical Group, a provider of managed vision and professional eye care products and services and an affiliate of Palisade Capital Management, LLC, MetroMedia International Group, an international telecommunications company, World Factory, Inc., an international sourcing and product development company specializing in outdoor living and hardware products and Brain Twist Inc., a specialty drink development company.
Marc L. Panoff
Marc Panoff joined Neurologix in January 2006 as the Company's Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Secretary. Previously, Mr. Panoff served as Chief Financial Officer at Nephros, Inc., a publicly traded medical device company from July 2004 to January 2006, where he was responsible for leading the Company's successful initial public offering. From August 2001 to July 2004, Mr. Panoff served as Vice President, Finance, at Walker Digital Companies, a privately held research and development company. He also served as Corporate Controller at Medicis Pharmaceutical Corporation, a publicly traded specialty pharmaceutical company, for over seven years. At Medicis, Mr. Panoff was responsible for financial operations and the operational integration of various transactions, including acquisitions, a joint venture, and in-licensing agreements. Mr. Panoff received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Washington University in St. Louis and his Masters in Business Administration from Arizona State University.
Christine V. Sapan
Dr. Sapan was appointed as the Executive Vice President, Chief Development Officer of the Company effective July 10, 2006. Dr. Sapan was previously employed for 18 years at Nabi Biopharmaceuticals, a vertically integrated biopharmaceutical company that focuses on serious unmet medical needs including infectious diseases, most recently serving as Vice President, Project Management from 2001 to 2005. During her tenure with Nabi, Dr. Sapan played a key role in the management of the company's research programs and the commercial expansion of its therapeutic products. Earlier in her career, Dr. Sapan worked and consulted for a number of technology based diagnostic companies, including Beckman-Coulter, as a regulatory affairs advisor. Dr. Sapan has a Ph.D in Experimental Pathology and an M.S. in Human Physiology from the University of North Carolina.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Martin J. Kaplitt, M.D.
Dr. Kaplitt has been the Chairman of the Board of the Corporation since February 2004. Dr. Kaplitt served as the Executive Chairman of the Corporation from September 2004 until February 23, 2007. He also served as President of the Corporation from February 2004 to September 2004 and was previously a director and president of Neurologix Research, Inc., the Corporation's predecessor, from August 1999 to February 2004. Dr. Kaplitt has been associated with North Shore University Hospital for over 30 years and has held a variety of positions including: Chief of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery from 1971 to 1978, Associate Attending in Cardiovascular Surgery from 1978 to 2001 and Adjunct Associate Attending in Surgery from 2001 to present. He was also a clinical associate professor of surgery at Cornell University Medical College. Dr. Kaplitt was a director of the Trust Company of New Jersey from 1985 through May 2004, when it was acquired by North Fork Bankcorp of Long Island, NY. Dr. Kaplitt attended Cornell University and the State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center. Dr. Kaplitt is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American College of Cardiology.
Cornelius E. Golding
Mr. Golding has been a director of the Corporation since August 2006. From 1981 to 2003, Mr. Golding served in various financial roles at Atlantic Mutual Insurance Company, a property and casualty insurance company in Madison, New Jersey. During his tenure with Atlantic Mutual, Mr. Golding first served as vice president of internal audit and comptroller before being appointed as senior vice president. Mr. Golding was promoted to chief financial officer in 1994 and served in this role until his retirement in 2003. Mr. Golding is currently a financial consultant to various property and casualty insurance companies and serves on the boards of directors of National Atlantic Holdings Corporation, a property and casualty insurance company, and the Somerset Hills Bank Corp., a holding company for the Bank of Somerset Hills, a New Jersey bank, and various private companies, including the United Auto Insurance Group of North Miami Beach, Florida. Mr. Golding is a Certified Public Accountant and holds a B.B.A. in accounting from Saint John Fisher College and an M.B.A. in finance from Fairleigh Dickenson University.
Reginald L. Hardy
Mr. Hardy was appointed to the Board on February 18, 2010 to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of William J. Gedale. Since 2003, Mr. Hardy has been President and a director of Concordia Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a drug development company focused on innovative cancer drug therapies, which he founded. He also serves on the board of directors of Concordia. From 1992 through 1998, Mr. Hardy served as President of SANO Corporation, a pharmaceutical company focused on development of transdermal drug delivery systems. Mr. Hardy earned his B.S. degree in Pharmacy from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, and his M.B.A from the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. The Board believes that Mr. Hardy's background and executive experience in the pharmaceutical and drug industries will be invaluable to the Corporation's business and strategies relating to its current products and its efforts to finance the development of such products. In particular, the Board is looking to Mr. Hardy for assistance in negotiating investment banking and similar transactions.
Clark A. Johnson
Mr. Johnson has been a director of the Corporation since February 2004. He has been the Chairman of PSS World Medical, Inc., a national distributor of medical equipment and supplies to physicians, hospitals, nursing homes, and diagnostic imaging facilities since October 2000. From August 1985 to June 1998, Mr. Johnson served as Chief Executive Officer of Pier 1 Imports, a specialty retailer of imported decorative home furnishings, gifts and related items, also becoming Chairman in 1988. Currently, Mr. Johnson serves on the board of directors of various private companies, including REFAC Optical Group, a provider of managed vision and professional eye care products and services and an affiliate of Palisade Capital Management, LLC, MetroMedia International Group, an international telecommunications company, World Factory, Inc., an international sourcing and product development company specializing in outdoor living and hardware products and Brain Twist Inc., a specialty drink development company.
Jeffrey B. Reich, M.D.
Dr. Reich has been a director of the Corporation since February 2005. Since January 2007, Dr. Reich has served as a healthcare analyst at Cramer Rosenthal McGlynn, a New York City-based investment and asset management firm. From 2002 through 2007, Dr. Reich served as a senior analyst and portfolio manager at Merlin Biomed Group, a New York City-based asset management firm that invests globally in public and private healthcare companies. Dr. Reich has also served as an assistant professor of clinical neurology at Weill Medical College of Cornell University since 1995. He received his medical degree from Weill Medical College of Cornell University in 1987.
Elliott H. Singer
Mr. Singer has been a director of the Corporation since November 14, 2005. Mr. Singer is a Managing Director of FairView Advisors, a financial services firm that he founded in September 2001. Mr. Singer founded and served as the Chief Executive Officer of A+ Network (formerly A+ Communications). Mr. Singer holds a B.A. from Tulane University and an MBA from the Leonard R. Stern School of Business at NYU.
-As of March 12, 2010, there were outstanding 27,865,010 shares of the Registrant’s common stock, par value $0.001 per share.
The Company is a development stage company that is engaged in the research and development of proprietary treatments for disorders of the brain and central nervous system using gene transfer and other innovative therapies. These treatments are designed as alternatives to conventional surgical and pharmacological treatments.
To date, the Company has not generated any operating revenues and has incurred annual net losses. From inception through December 31, 2009, the Company had an accumulated deficit of $51,528, and it expects to incur additional losses for the foreseeable future. The Company recognized net losses of $13,461 for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2009, and $6,320 for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2008.
Since its inception, the Company has financed its operations primarily through sales of its equity and debt securities. From inception through December 31, 2009, the Company received proceeds primarily from private sales of equity and debt securities and from the Merger of approximately $44,531 in the aggregate. While the Company will continue to seek additional funds through the sale of its securities to fund its operations, the Company will also seek to obtain strategic collaborations to finance the further development of its Parkinson’s product, including the ultimate marketing and sale of such product. (See “Liquidity and Capital Resources”).
The Company has devoted a significant portion of its capital resources to the research and development of its products. The Company’s primary efforts are directed to the development of a therapeutic product to meet the needs of patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease.
In addition to its product for Parkinson’s disease, the Company has undertaken efforts to develop a product for the treatment of TLE but does not anticipate using its current funds for the further development of its TLE product at this time. The Company also has undertaken efforts to develop a product for Huntington’s disease and is engaged in pre-clinical activities relating to such product. See “Plan of Operation – Epilepsy” and “Plan of Operation – Huntington’s Disease” below.
In October 2006, the Company announced that it had completed its Phase 1 clinical trial for Parkinson’s disease. The results of this trial indicated that the treatment, which was confined to only one side of the brain, appeared to be safe and well-tolerated in trial participants with advanced Parkinson’s disease, with no evidence of adverse effects or immunologic reaction related to the study treatment. The trial also yielded statistically significant clinical efficacy and neuro-imaging results. The results were published in two leading peer-reviewed medical and scientific journals: the June 23, 2007 issue of the journal The Lancet and the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in November 2007.
In November 2009, the Company completed all 44 of the planned surgeries associated with its Phase 2 clinical trial for the treatment of advanced Parkinson’s disease. Half of the trial participants were randomly selected to receive an infusion of the gene-based treatment bilaterally and the other half, the Control Participants, were randomly selected to receive a sterile saline solution. Trial participants are being assessed for safety and for treatment effects by standardized Parkinson’s disease ratings at multiple time points both pre and post-procedure. The primary endpoint for the trial will be a clinical assessment of motor function at 6 months using the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). The Company expects to receive initial results, based on these assessments, of its Phase 2 clinical trial at the end of the 6-month
period following the completion of the last participant’s surgical procedure. All participants in the trial will continue to be monitored for safety for 12 months following their respective surgical procedures. If such initial efficacy results are significantly positive and if the 12-month
safety data is acceptable, then those Control Participants who continue to meet all entry, medical and surgical criteria for the trial will be offered the opportunity to participate in the open label arm of the trial to receive a bilateral infusion of the gene-based treatment.
The Company is currently taking steps to move toward a pivotal trial for treatment of Parkinson’s disease and hopes to be in a position to file its protocol with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (the “FDA”) in 2010 or 2011. The ability of the Company to conduct such a trial will require, among other things, the approval of the FDA and the availability of adequate funds, which, in turn, will be largely dependent upon the safety and efficacy results obtained from its Phase 2 clinical trial. Currently, the Company estimates that the pivotal trial could be completed in 2013 and the estimated total direct costs to reach that milestone are expected to be between $20 million and $40 million.
In December 2006, the Company submitted an investigational new drug application to the FDA for permission to begin a Phase 1 clinical trial of gene transfer therapy for TLE. The proposed clinical protocol for this study was presented to the National Institute of Health’s Office of Biotechnology Activities Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee on September 23, 2004 and was reviewed favorably.
The Company does not, at this time, intend to commit its current funds to continue work on its gene transfer therapy for TLE. As previously stated, the Company intends to focus its efforts and resources on its Parkinson’s product. (See “Business of the Company – Epilepsy”).
In November 2005, the Company announced findings from pre-clinical studies that showed that a form of the gene dXIAP may prevent the progression of Huntington’s disease.
The Company’s development of this therapy for Huntington’s disease is currently in the pre-clinical phase. The Company reviewed and analyzed its initial pre-clinical results and determined that additional pre-clinical testing is required prior to seeking regulatory clearance to commence a Phase 1 clinical trial for this therapy. The Company proposes, at this time, to defer additional pre-clinical tests while the Company focuses its efforts and resources on its Parkinson’s product.
The Company will also continue its efforts in developing therapies to treat other neurodegenerative and metabolic disorders, including depression and genetically-based obesity under its research agreements with Cornell and OSURF.
Over the next 12 months, in addition to its normal recurring expenditures, the Company expects to spend approximately $3,900 in Phase 2 clinical trial expenses with regard to its Parkinson’s treatment; $1,000 in costs associated with operating as a publicly traded company, such as legal fees, accounting fees, insurance premiums, investor and public relations fees; $700 in expenses in order to scale up its manufacturing capabilities for the supply of product for a Parkinson’s pivotal trial; and $550 in research and licensing fees.