(LSE:NFX ) has signed an exclusive option agreement with Oxilio Ltd ("Oxilio") for the licence for the development and exploitation of NXP001 in oncology.
Under the terms of the agreement, Nuformix will receive an Up-front payment for an exclusive option period of six months, within which the global licensing agreement can be triggered. Nuformix will also provide, and charge for, a fixed amount of consultancy services to Oxilio during the option period.
Should Oxilio exercise this option within the period, Nuformix will licence its patent estate and know-how on NXP001 in return for a significant upfront payment and additional development milestones and a royalty on net sales, capped at £2m per annum.
Oxilio will then develop and seek to exploit NXP001 globally for the treatment of cancer. It is anticipated early clinical trials will determine which cancer types respond best to treatment.
The collaboration with Nuformix allows Oxilio to focus on developing rapidly a unique formulation and dosage form with NXP001.
This would potentially overcome the key hurdle in drug repurposing, patent consideration-induced market exclusivity, as well as providing an accelerated route to the clinic.
Oxilio is focused on developing a therapeutic with the potential to treat patients with various cancer types representing a global therapeutics market estimated to be more than $130 billion (Source: BCC Publishing, Jan 2019).
Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally with around 10 million deaths per annum, in spite of extensive studies to find new treatment regimens and more effective drugs. However, the cost of cancer treatment is increasing, in large part due to the expense of taking drugs through clinical trials where historically there is a very low rate of success. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop safe, effective, and readily available anticancer agents.
Oxilio is therefore focused on alleviating the current dilemma of a shortage of drug candidates for finding new cancer therapies, by adopting a drug repurposing strategy (identifying new uses for approved or investigational drugs that are outside the scope of the original medical indication). The major advantage of this approach is that the pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and toxicity profiles of these drugs are already reasonably well established. Thus, drug repurposing may hold the potential to result in a less risky development route with substantially lower associated development costs.
Shares in Nuformix have traded between 3p and 4p over the past three months to open at 4.1p following news on the agreement with Oxilio.
Dr Chris Blackwell, Executive Chairman, said: "This agreement allows Nuformix the opportunity to benefit from the upside of a significant global market opportunity whilst realising short-term revenues. Furthermore, it demonstrates our commitment to explore and leverage value creating opportunities for all our pipeline assets. We look forward to working with Oxilio on this collaboration."
Dr Simon Yaxley, Co-Founder and Director of Oxilio said: "This collaboration with Nuformix allows Oxilio to continue the development of NXP001 as a potential new treatment in the battle against cancer. We are excited by the opportunity of accelerating our science towards our first clinical trials through this collaboration and we look forward to working with the Nuformix team to realise the opportunity".
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