BEVERLY, MA–(Marketwire – July 26, 2010) – Cellceutix Corporation (OTCBB: CTIX) is pleased to announce that it has selected Destum Partners to assist in finding a development partner for its psoriasis compound, KM-133. Cellceutix management has carefully evaluated which direction to take in the development of KM-133 and has concluded that this is the best way to create shareholder value.
In a human xenograft animal model of psoriasis, KM-133 reduced psoriasis significantly more than controls. Psoriasis did not recur with KM-133 during the entire 180 day course of the experiment, whereas psoriasis reoccurred in the groups treated with methotrexate, a drug commonly used for the treatment of severe psoriasis, after an average of 61 days. The effectiveness demonstrated by KM-133 in these studies, if confirmed in human trials, would position the compound in a very large market. According to a report published by Research and Markets, the psoriasis market for the seven (7) major markets in 2008 was US $2.5 billion and is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 3.4% through 2018.
KM-133 is also an attractive compound as it may be eligible for an abridged FDA approval process that would allow the compound to go directly into human trials. Cellceutix believes the significant cost savings and accelerated timing with the elimination of pre-clinical testing coupled with the strong data previously collected will make KM-133 a very desirable compound for potential partners.
“This decision is ultimately a consequence of the strength of our pipeline,” said George Evans, CEO of Cellceutix. ”With our primary focus on the impending IND filing for Kevetrin™ and our work on KM-391 for autism, our board determined that this approach is the best way to increase value for our shareholders. We selected Destum because of their deep experience in the dermatology space and their excellent recent track record in concluding development deals.”
Gareth Lugg, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Destum Partners commented, “We are very pleased that Cellceutix selected us for this project. Although Cellceutix is a small company, the strength of their compounds in development is extraordinary.” Mr. Lugg continued, “Our extensive experience in the dermatological industry has us very bullish on the partnership potential for this compound.” Destum Partners has extensive advisory experience both in the dermatology and autoimmune therapeutic areas. They have worked with companies such as Collagenex and Pfizer specifically focused on dermatology. Most recently, Destum Partners completed a partnering agreement on behalf of Diamyd Medical AB with OMJPI a division of Johnson and Johnson for the treatment and prevention of Type I Diabetes — an autoimmune disease. Diamyd received an upfront payment of US $45 million, and has the potential to receive US $580 million in milestone payments.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), as many as 7.5 million Americans (125 million worldwide) have psoriasis making it one of the most prevalent autoimmune diseases in the U.S. affecting all ages of both sexes. Additionally, studies show that between 10 and 30 percent of people with psoriasis also develop psoriatic arthritis.
Psoriasis greatly affects the quality of life of those with the disease; especially those with moderate to severe psoriasis. Nearly 60 percent of people with psoriasis reported their disease to be a large problem in their everyday life making psoriasis much more than a “cosmetic problem.” It is estimated that the total direct and indirect health care costs of psoriasis for patients are calculated at $11.25 billion annually, with work loss accounting for 40 percent of the cost burden.