07 Sep 2020 – Destiny Pharma and SporeGen® announce collaboration and Innovate UK grant award to co-develop novel, preventative treatment for COVID-19

Destiny Pharma and SporeGen® announce collaboration and Innovate UK grant award to co-develop novel, preventative treatment for COVID-19

  • SPOR-COV prophylactic approach targets the innate immune system with potential to develop COVID-19 protection within a few days of treatment
  • Innovate UK grant of £800,000 to support SPOR-COV™ programme over the next 18 months
  • Expands Destiny Pharma’s novel pipeline targeted at preventing infections

Brighton, United Kingdom – 7 September 2020

Destiny Pharma plc (AIM: DEST), a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the development of novel, hospital infection prevention treatments that address the global challenge of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), today announces that it has entered into a collaboration agreement with SporeGen Limited (“SporeGen”), a UK biotechnology company working exclusively on Bacillus and its applications, to co-develop SporeGen’s SPOR-COV product as a novel, preventive treatment for COVID-19.

Under the agreement, the parties will share any costs and commercial returns from SPOR-COV and plan to complete a pre-clinical programme with the aim of being ready to enter the first human clinical trials within 18 months. Destiny Pharma’s expertise in pre-clinical and clinical drug development will be combined with SporeGen’s world leading understanding of Bacillus bacterial spores to progress the SPOR‑COV project.

The SPOR‑COV product consists of a proprietary formulation of Bacillus bacteria that will be administered nasally as a spray. SPOR-COV has already been shown by SporeGen to provide complete (100%) protection in preclinical models of influenza virus. SporeGen has IP protection supporting the SPOR‑COV approach and this will be expanded during the project.

SPOR-COV is different to vaccines in that it utilises the innate immune system with the aim of developing COVID-19 protection a few days after dosing. As an “easy to use” first line of defence, it has the potential to reduce COVID-19 infection rates and transmission significantly. The final SPOR-COV product is planned to be straightforward to produce at high volumes and at low cost. Additional attributes are that it could be stockpiled almost indefinitely without the need for cold chain refrigeration as it is a very stable product. It could be made available globally as a cost-effective measure in the fight against COVID-19 as well as new COVID strains and other respiratory viral infections.

£800,000 grant from Innovate UK (IUK) to support SPOR-COV™ preclinical programme

Destiny Pharma and SporeGen are also very pleased to announce that IUK has awarded a grant of £800,000 to fund the majority of the £1 million cost of the initial SPOR-COV programme. The preclinical efficacy work will be undertaken in collaboration with Professor Aras Kadioglu, at University of Liverpool who is Professor of Bacterial Pathogenesis in the Department of Clinical Infection, Microbiology & Immunology,  where he heads the Bacterial Pathogenesis and Immunity group and is a leading expert in respiratory infection models and host immunity to infection. The manufacturing and formulation development work will be carried out by HURO, an experienced manufacturer of bacterial product formulations based in Vietnam and part of PAN Group. The plan is to complete the required pre-clinical safety and efficacy studies and also develop the manufacturing process in the next 18 months and be ready to commence the first human clinical studies thereafter.

Professor Simon Cutting, Chief Executive of SporeGen, said: “The SPOR-COV platform has already been shown to be effective against pandemic flu by targeting the innate immune system. As such, SPOR-COV potentially has value as a universal system for combatting other viral diseases such as COVID-19. If successful, we foresee a novel approach against COVID-19 and for future, similar pandemics. The SPOR-COV approach, unlike traditional vaccination, focuses on innate immunity and may not be impaired by new mutational variants. A further attribute of SPOR-COV is that it can be produced and stockpiled with ease and does not require a cold-chain. Prima facie our approach is simple and offers a potential new approach in the fight against one of the most serious diseases to afflict mankind”.

Neil Clark, Chief Executive Officer of Destiny Pharma, said: “We are excited to announce the collaboration with SporeGen to co-develop their SPOR-COV product to prevent COVID-19 infections and the concurrent award of significant grant funding from Innovate UK. We are also pleased to be working with Professor Kadioglu at the University of Liverpool who has world class virology expertise. Destiny Pharma is committed to building a novel pipeline targeted at preventing infections and is very pleased to now be working with partners on the SPOR-COV project alongside our existing in-house XF platform.  The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has highlighted powerfully the need for innovation in developing new treatments to prevent and manage both viral and bacterial infections and Destiny Pharma remains committed to developing cost-effective products that meet this medical need”.

 ENDS

The information communicated in this announcement is inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of EU Regulation 596/2014.

For further information, please contact:

Destiny Pharma plc
Neil Clark, CEO
Shaun Claydon, CFO
pressoffice@destinypharma.com
+44 (0)1273 704 440

SporeGen Limited
Professor Simon Cutting CEO
Kim Oanh Nguyen, COO
s.cutting@sporegen.com
+44-(0)7691 2090/+44-(0)7900 408043

Optimum Strategic Communications
Mary Clark, Shabnam Bashir, Manel Mateus
Tel: +44 (0) 203 174 1789
Email: DestinyPharma@optimumcomms.com

finnCap Ltd (Nominated Advisor Joint Broker)
Geoff Nash / Kate Bannatyne, Corporate Finance
Alice Lane, Corporate Broking
+44 (0)20 7220 0500

WG Partners (Joint Broker)
Nigel Barnes / Claes Spång / Nigel Birks
+44 (0) 203 705 9330

About Destiny Pharma
Destiny Pharma is an established, clinical stage, innovative biotechnology company focused on the development of novel medicines from its XF Platform that represent a new approach to the treatment of infectious disease. The company’s lead programme is undergoing a Phase 2b clinical trial and is targeting the prevention of post-surgical hospital infections including MRSA. The XF drug candidates are being developed for the prevention and treatment of life-threatening infections caused by antibiotic‑resistant bacteria, often referred to as “superbugs”. Tackling anti-microbial resistance has become a global imperative recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the United Nations, as well as the G7 and the G20 countries. For further information, please visit https://www.destinypharma.com

About SporeGen
SporeGen Limited was founded in 2012 as a biotech start up at the Royal Holloway University of London and was spun-out in 2017. The company is now situated at the London Bioscience Innovation Centre in central London. The company’s focus has been on development of novel prophylactic and therapeutic products including vaccines. The company has worked extensively with spores (Bacillus/Clostridia) and were the first to use spores as vaccine delivery vehicles including coordination of a Phase 1 study of a mucosal vaccine. The company has licensed a number of interventions to companies including large global biotechnology companies. The company has a number of pipeline products including an oral vaccine to C. difficile infection that has been taken to phase 1 clinical studies. The company was founded by Professor Simon Cutting who is a leading expert in the bacteria Bacillus and its potential application as a medical treatment in human health.  Professor Cutting is a bacterial geneticist with over 35 years of experience with Bacillus since graduating from Oxford University with a D. Phil in 1986. After spending 7 years in the renowned laboratory of Professor Richard Losick at Harvard University Biological Laboratories (USA) he was as an Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Medical School in Philadelphia. He returned to the UK in 1996 where he is a Professor at the Royal Holloway, University of London. For further information please visit http://www.sporegen.com

About Innovate UK
Innovate UK drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas. Innovate UK connect businesses to the partners, customers and investors that can help them turn ideas into commercially successful products and services and business growth.

Innovate UK fund business and research collaborations to accelerate innovation and drive business investment into R&D. Our support is available to businesses across all economic sectors, value chains and UK regions. Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation. For more information visit www.innovateuk.ukri.org

UKRI Ideas to Address COVID-19
This UKRI (United Kingdom Research and Innovation) competition opened in March 2020 as a call for short-term projects addressing and mitigating the health, social, economic, cultural and environmental impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak across areas within UKRI’s remit.

 

10 July 2020 – Pharma companies join forces to launch $1 billion fund to develop new antibiotics by 2030

Twenty-three leading biopharmaceutical companies have joined forces to invest $1 billion in a fund to develop new antibiotics, which are needed urgently to fight the worldwide rise in antimicrobial-resistant superbugs. The AMR Action Fund, aims to bring 2-4 new antibiotics to patients by 2030. Through the AMR Action Fund, pharmaceutical companies will join forces with philanthropies, development banks, and multilateral organizations to strengthen and accelerate antibiotic development. The Fund will focus on urgent public health needs. It will provide much needed financial resources, as well as important technical support to help biotech companies bring novel antibiotics to patients.

Destiny Pharma CEO Neil Clark said ”We welcome this significant new fund supporting novel drug development addressing AMR. The world needs new antinfective drugs and Destiny Pharma is one of the few biotech companies dedicated to this global clinical need. The new pharma backed fund is clear recognition of the clinical need and is the latest in a series of new initiatives from regulators, governments and healthcare investors to support innovation that addresses AMR”.

02 Sept 2019 – Destiny Pharma XF Drug platform data to be presented at EuroBiofilms

Destiny Pharma plc
(“Destiny Pharma” or “the Company”)

 Destiny Pharma XF Drug platform data to be presented at EuroBiofilms

Data part of collaboration with Cardiff University to identify safe and efficacious compounds with a reduced anti-microbial resistance profile

Brighton, United Kingdom – 2 September 2019 – Destiny Pharma (AIM: DEST), a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the development of novel anti-microbial drugs which address the global problem of anti-microbial resistance (AMR), announces that data from its collaboration, ‘Evaluation of XF Drugs as Antibiotic Resistance Breakers’, with Cardiff University is being presented at the EuroBiofilms conference, in Glasgow, 3-6 September 2019.

The poster, entitled ‘Evaluation of the novel XF Drugs: Potent antibacterial drugs with Twin Mechanisms of Action’, is being presented by Dr Emma Board-Davies, Post-Doctoral Research Associate, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Cardiff University. The data looks at the potency of Destiny Pharma’s product platform, including XF-73, XF-70 and DPD-207, against a range of the critical, infection causing bacteria.

The research programme, ‘Evaluation of XF Drugs as Antibiotic Resistance Breakers,’ is a two-year project examining the use of the Company’s novel XF drugs to prevent, control and eradicate life threatening bacteria or “superbugs” without generating resistance. It is funded by the UK-China AMR grant fund set up by Innovate UK and the Department of Health and Social Care with the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology at the beginning of 2019.

About EuroBiofilms
EuroBiofilms provides participants with a valuable forum for a fruitful scientific exchange in the field of microbial biofilms. An opportunity for scientists, clinicians and industry partners with an interest in biofilm-related problems to exchange novel information on clinical, environmental and basic elements of microbial biofilms.

For further information, please contact:

Destiny Pharma plc
Neil Clark, CEO
Shaun Claydon, CFO
pressoffice@destinypharma.com
+44 (0)1273 704 440

FTI Consulting
Simon Conway / Victoria Foster Mitchell
destinypharma@fticonsulting.com
+44 (0) 20 3727 1000

finnCap Ltd (Nominated Advisor Joint Broker)
Geoff Nash /Kate Bannatyne, Corporate Finance
Alice Lane, Corporate Broking
+44 (0)20 7220 0500

WG Partners (Joint Broker)
Nigel Barnes / Claes Spång / Nigel Birks
+44 (0) 203 705 9330

About Destiny Pharma
Destiny Pharma is an established, clinical stage, innovative biotechnology company focused on the development of novel medicines from its XF Platform that represent a new approach to the treatment of infectious disease. The company’s lead programme is undergoing a Phase 2b clinical trial and is targeting the prevention of post-surgical hospital infections including MRSA. The XF drug candidates are being developed for the prevention and treatment of life-threatening infections caused by antibiotic‑resistant bacteria, often referred to as “superbugs”. Tackling anti-microbial resistance has become a global imperative recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the United Nations, as well as the G7 and the G20 countries. For further information, please visit www.destinypharma.com

About XF-73
XF-73 is a synthetic anti-microbial active against all tested Staphylococcus aureus strains, including drug‑resistant strains. By acting via a cell-surface mechanism it affects the bacterial membrane permeability and integrity, leading to cell death. XF-73 has already been through seven successful Phase I/II clinical trials showing it is safe and delivers a rapid antibacterial action. In standard microbiology studies XF drugs have demonstrated a unique no/low resistance profile that means that XF compounds have the potential to deliver novel drugs that are clearly differentiated from traditional antibiotics where resistance limits their utility.

XF-73 is indicated for the prevention of post-surgical staphylococcal infections. In the US, there are approximately 40 million surgeries per annum alone where the patient is at risk of a post-surgical infection. However, within this large population there are particular groups who are at an even higher risk of infection due to the nature of their surgery or the procedures and/or their specific hospital environment in which they are treated. These higher risk surgical procedures include cardiovascular, orthopaedic and other complex surgeries. Destiny Pharma estimates that this totals approximately 14 million US surgeries per year, with this figure set to rise within the context of an ageing population.

05 Feb 2018 – Destiny Pharma wins Deal of the Year at the Insider South East Dealmaker Awards 2018

Destiny Pharma has won Deal of the Year at the Insider South East Dealmakers Awards 2018, held on 1 February 2018 at The Copthorne in Gatwick, UK.

Now in its twelfth year, the Dealmakers awards recognise the region’s top deals and advisory companies over the course of the last 12 months.  The Deal of the Year award follows Destiny Pharma’s flotation on AIM in September 2017, raising £15.3m to accelerate the clinical development of its lead product, XF-73, and XF drug development platform.

Neil Clark, Chief Executive Officer of Destiny Pharma, commented:
“We are very pleased to be awarded this award for our successful placing and admission to trading on AIM in September of last year, which marked a major milestone for Destiny Pharma. We continue to advance the clinical development of our lead product, XF-73, and our proprietary XF drug development platform to offer a novel way of tackling the global problem of anti-microbial resistance.”