Interim results for six months ended 31 July 2021
- The Company has undergone a number of Board and leadership changes in addition to a significant increase in scientific staff. The roles of Executive Chairman and CEO were split, and Professor Trevor Jones was appointed Non-Executive Chairman, Ali Mortazavi continued in his role as CEO and two leadership appointments were made; Dr Karl Keegan as CFO and Dr Alison Gallafent as Head of IP. Staff numbers rose from 27 (31 January 2021) to 33 (31 July 2021)
- In February 2021, the Company announced it had:
- Filed a patent application related to its innovative GaINAc-conjugated siRNAs (short interfering RNA) construct designs, an important element of its RNAi platform technology
- Commenced multiple in vitro and in vivo studies to test newly designed siRNA constructs with potentially beneficial safety and potency profiles. Headline results of these experiments have been separately announced today and show at least equivalent performance and safety to industry-leading RNAi platforms
- In April 2021, the Company received two key milestone payments from Galapagos NV ("Galapagos") as part of its collaboration to identify new therapeutic approaches to modulate a specific mechanism involved in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis ("IPF") and other fibrotic indications. In July 2021, the Company received an additional milestone payment from Galapagos
- In June 2021, a £22.5 million gross fundraise was successfully completed securing investment from new and existing shareholders. This raise enables further expansion of the Company's computational platform and the acceleration of the development of RNAi therapeutics
- During the period, the Company has continued to advance its computational platform, with an increased focus on network-aware novel target identification, mode of action elucidation and target deconvolution
Post Period Highlights:
Additional patent applications
In October 2021, the Company announced it had filed five new patent applications relating to its innovative GalNAc-conjugated siRNA construct designs, including around stabilising chemical modifications enabling specific hepatocyte (liver cell) targeting and a further six new patent applications have now also been filed. The relevant summary dataset will be presented at the Company's R&D Day in 2022 and headline non-human primate data can be found in the interim results presentation at http://www.rns-pdf.londonstockexchange.com/rns/2021Q_1-2021-10-25.pdf
Positive progress on RNAi platform; GaINAc-siRNA constructs successfully characterised
- In a separate announcement today, e-therapeutics announced positive headline results from in vivo characterisation studies in non-human primates, testing the Company's proprietary GaINAc-siRNA constructs:
- Constructs demonstrated equivalence performance to leading competitor platforms, showing deep and durable target gene knock-down
- GaINAc-siRNA constructs successfully characterised and show reproducible performance across three target genes
- The Company anticipates offering early-stage RNAi business development opportunities to potential partners in the coming months
- The Company is building the most complete hepatocyte Knowledge Graph ("KG"), integrating numerous data sources and its newly created AI-enhanced, hepatocyte protein-protein interactome. Proprietary omics data from experimental studies will be included in due course and will enhance the computer-laboratory interface
Commencement of trading on the OTCQX Best Market
- In September 2021, e-therapeutics commenced trading on the OTCQX market in the U.S. which was an important step for the Company to broaden its shareholder base
During the period, the Company strengthened its financial position following the successful equity fund raise which was completed in June 2021.
- Revenues of £0.5 million (H1 2020: £0.04 million)
- Operating loss for the period of £3.5 million (HY20 loss: £2.7 million)
- £22.5 million before expenses, from Placing, Subscription and Retail Offer in May 2021
- Cash and cash equivalents at 31 July 2021 £31.6 million (31 January 2021: £13.0 million)
- R&D spend £2.5 million (HY20: £1.2 million)
I am extremely pleased with the progress the Company has made in the period. In particular, with further milestone achievements in our partnership with Galapagos and the completion of a successful equity fund raise. The raise enables enhanced investment for the Company to accelerate the development of RNAi therapeutics and to further develop our computational capabilities. Since the fund raise, we have made excellent progress in all areas of the Company and we are building on this positive momentum.
We are delighted to announce top-line positive results from in vivo studies in non-human primates, confirming the Company's proprietary GaINAc-siRNA platform has been successfully benchmarked against leading competitor RNAi platforms. These excellent results show that our proprietary delivery system and siRNA chemistries are competitive relative to peer platforms. This is a material step in the Company's ultimate goal of developing an in-house RNAi pipeline with future scope for early-stage partnering. Eleven new patent applications have been filed to protect these innovations. In parallel, we are developing the world's largest data resource in hepatocyte biology which will enable the identification and prosecution of novel therapeutic targets, both internally and with collaborators.
We believe that e-therapeutics offers a differentiated strategy, with the ability to silence any gene in the liver with extremely rapid pre-clinical timelines, coupled with powerful computational capabilities, including in hepatocyte biology. We look forward to the future with great excitement.
Chief Executive Officer