Midatech Pharma primed and funded for success

2018-04-23 07:36:00
2018 is shaping up to be a crucial year for the company's drug pipeline
Three clinical trials are underway - each could have a meaningful impact for the group

Midatech Pharma PLC (LON:MTPH) is “fully focused” on advancing its drug pipeline “into clinical development and beyond”, according to chief executive designate, Dr Craig Cook.

Positive clinical trial readouts for Q-Octreotide would accelerate the path to product registration, the company said.

Also known as MTD201, the Midatech advance provides a long-acting treatment for a hormone disorder acromegaly and metastatic carcinoid tumours, while the latter is being developed to treat a type of brain tumour found in children called diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma.

Early data from the MTX110 children's brain tumour study would be an important indicator of the product's efficacy and may also lead to early registration for this ultra-rare indication in children, Midatech added in an update alongside its full-year results.

The company has also embarked on a study of Gelclair, which could widen its prospective market. The product is already on sale for a complication of cancer called oral mucositis.

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“We will be pursuing multiple opportunities in the coming months, and look forward with cautious optimism to a pivotal year ahead.”

The company also has a commercial arm, which generated gross revenues of £12.1mln last year, up 31%.

As should be expected from a company developing three separate drugs, Midatech was loss-making. The deficit was just over £16mln, with R&D costs the major chunk of that figure, the company said in its full year 2017 results statement.

Sitting on cash of £13mln 

More importantly, the group was sitting on £13.2mln of cash at the period-end.

“With additional funding secured, we are well-resourced to drive towards our clinical objectives,” said CEO Cook.

“We are enthused by the prospect of delivering transformative therapies to improve patients' lives and progressing our R&D pipeline forward to address unmet needs in significant markets, driving future profitability and creating value for stakeholders."

The technology

The key to each of Midatech’s clinical programmes is Midatech’s technology which allows it to precisely deploy drugs into the body.

Its two platforms – carbohydrate-coated gold nano-particles and its sustained release system – are about getting medicines to the right place in the right quantities at the right time.

The company's gold nano-particles, or GNPs for short, promise a revolution in targeted therapies for cancer.

To radically simplify, the process deploys these GNPs to act as guided missiles.

In treating cancer with traditional chemo-therapy, for instance, they are programmed to hit only a specific tumour type with their payload.

This highly targeted approach allows physicians to potentially administer lower doses and it also means there is little collateral damage.

Sustained release system

Its Q-Sphera technology works in a different way to deliver the drug at the right time.

It is a sustained release platform and has adopted 3D and ink jet printing techniques to create particles that dissolve in a certain way over a certain time-scale.

Q-Sphera allows drug compounds to be released into the body in a “highly controlled manner” over a prolonged period of time; potentially from a few days to up to six months.