Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Commitments and Contingencies

v3.20.1
Commitments and Contingencies
3 Months Ended
Mar. 31, 2020
Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]  
Commitments and Contingencies

7. Commitments and Contingencies

 

Legal Claims

 

The Company may be subject to legal claims and actions from time to time as part of its business activities. As of March 31, 2020, the Company was not subject to any pending or threatened legal claims or actions.

 

Clinical Trial Agreements

 

Effective August 20, 2018, the Company and the Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute Hospital Inc., Tampa, Florida (“Moffitt”) entered into a Clinical Trial Research Agreement (the “Clinical Trial Research Agreement”) effective for a term of five years, unless terminated earlier by the Company pursuant to 30 days written notice. Pursuant to the Clinical Trial Research Agreement, Moffitt agreed to conduct and manage a Phase 1b/2 clinical trial to evaluate the therapeutic benefit of the Company’s lead anti-cancer clinical compound LB-100 to be administered intravenously in patients with low or intermediate-1 risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS).

 

In November 2018, the Company received approval from the FDA for its Investigational New Drug (IND) Application to conduct a Phase 1b/2 clinical trial to evaluate the therapeutic benefit of LB-100 in patients with low and intermediate-1 risk MDS who have failed or are intolerant of standard treatment. This clinical trial began in April 2019 and the first patient was entered into the clinical trial in July 2019. The clinical trial is expected to be completed over a period of two years, with final analysis and reporting expected within three years. This Phase 1b/2 clinical trial utilizes LB-100 as a single agent in the treatment of patients with del(5q) myelodysplastic syndrome (del5qMDS) failing first line therapy. The bone marrow cells of these patients are deficient in PP2A and are especially vulnerable to further inhibition of PP2A by LB-100. During the three months ended March 31, 2020 and 2019, the Company paid Moffitt $13,667 and $0, respectively, pursuant to this agreement. As of March 31, 2020, total costs of $58,760 have been incurred pursuant to this agreement.

 

Effective as of July 31, 2019, the Company entered into a Collaboration Agreement for an Investigator-Initiated Clinical Trial with the Spanish Sarcoma Group (Grupo Espanol de Investigacion en Sarcomas or “GEIS”), Madrid, Spain, to carry out a clinical trial entitled “Randomized phase I/II trial of LB-100 plus doxorubicin vs. doxorubicin alone in first line of advanced soft tissue sarcoma”. The purpose of this clinical trial is to obtain information about the efficacy and safety of the Company’s lead anti-cancer clinical compound LB-100 combined with doxorubicin in soft tissue sarcomas. Doxorubicin is the global standard for initial treatment of advanced soft tissue sarcomas (ASTA). Doxorubicin alone has been the mainstay of first line treatment of ASTS for over 40 years, with little therapeutic gain from adding cytotoxic compounds to or substituting other cytotoxic compounds for doxorubicin. In animal models, LB-100 consistently enhances the antitumor activity of doxorubicin without apparent increases in toxicity. GEIS has a network of referral centers in Span and across Europe that have an impressive track record of efficiently conducting innovative studies in ASTS. The Company has agreed to provide GEIS with a supply of LB-100 to be utilized in the conduct of this clinical trial, as well as to provide funding for the clinical trial. The goal is to enter the first patient into this clinical trial during the quarter ending June 30, 2020, with approximately 170 patients to be subsequently enrolled over a period of two years. The Company estimates that this clinical trial will be completed and results will be published by June 30, 2023. The original start date for patient entry was delayed due to longer than expected processing of formal approval of importation of LB-100 into the European Union. This approval was originally expected to be received in the quarter ended September 30, 2019 but was delayed and is now expected to be received during the quarter ending June 30, 2020. During the three months ended March 31, 2020, the Company did not incur any costs pursuant to this agreement; however, on February 18, 2020, the Company advanced $43,411 to GEIS towards an upcoming second milestone payment of $87,471. Excluding the advance made on February 18, 2020, as of March 31, 2020, total costs of $87,471 have been incurred pursuant to this agreement.

 

The Company’s aggregate commitments pursuant to these clinical trial agreements, less amounts previously paid to date under these agreements, totaled approximately $4,806,000 as of March 31, 2020, which are expected to be incurred over the next five years through March 31, 2025.

 

Clinical Trial Monitoring Agreements

 

On September 12, 2018, the Company finalized a work order agreement with Theradex Systems, Inc. (Theradex”), an international contract research organization (“CRO”), to monitor the Phase 1b/2 clinical trial being managed and conducted by Moffitt. The clinical trial is expected to be completed over a period of two years, with final analysis and reporting expected within three years. Costs under this work order agreement are estimated to be approximately $954,000, with such payments expected to be divided approximately 94% to Theradex for services and approximately 6% for payments for pass-through costs. The costs of the Phase 1b/2 clinical trial being paid to or through Theradex are being recorded and charged to operations based on the periodic documentation provided by the CRO. During the three months ended March 31, 2020 and 2019, the Company incurred costs of $5,686 and $32,964, respectively, pursuant to this work order. As of March 31, 2020, total costs of $69,178 have been incurred pursuant to this work order agreement.

 

Patent and License Agreements

 

On March 22, 2018, the Company entered into a Patent Assignment and Exploitation Agreement (the “Agreement”) with INSERM TRANSFERT SA, acting as delegatee of the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (“INSERM”), for the assignment to the Company of INSERM’S interest in United States Patent No. 9,833,450 entitled “Oxabicyloheptanes and Oxabicycloheptenes for the Treatment of Depressive and Stress Disorders”, which was filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office in the name of INSERM and the Company as co-owners on February 19, 2015 and granted on May 12, 2017, and related patent applications and filings. INSERM is a French public institution dedicated to research in the field of health and medicine that had previously entered into a Material Transfer Agreement (“MTA”) with the Company to allow INSERM to conduct research on the Company’s proprietary compound LB-100 and/or its analogs for the treatment of depressive or stress disorders in humans. Pursuant to the Agreement, the Company has agreed to make certain milestone payments to INSERM aggregating up to $1,750,000 upon achievement of development milestones and up to $6,500,000 upon achievement of commercial milestones. The Company also agreed to pay INSERM certain commercial royalties on net sales of products attributed to the Agreement. The Company’s current plan is to complete the validation process to evaluate LB-100 for the treatment of depressive or stress disorders in humans within three years; however, the exploitation of this patent for the treatment of depressive and stress disorders in humans will require substantial additional capital and/or a joint venture or other type of business arrangement with a pharmaceutical company with substantially greater capital and business resources than those available to the Company. As there can be no assurances that the Company will be able to obtain the capital or business resources necessary to focus on the exploitation of this patent, it is uncertain as to when the Company may reach any of the development or commercialization milestones under the Agreement, if at all. As of March 31, 2020 and December 31, 2019, no amounts were due under this agreement.

 

Effective April 2, 2018, the Company entered into a consulting agreement for a term of two years with Liberi Life Sciences Consultancy BV, located in The Netherlands, for consulting and advisory services with respect to sales and licensing, as well as the procurement of investors in China, Japan and South Korea (the “Consulting Agreement”). The Consulting Agreement provided for the payment of a fixed, one-time retainer of EURO 15,000 (US $18,348), which was paid on April 5, 2018, and 2.5% of the net payments received by the Company from sales of products or licensing activities arising directly and exclusively from leads generated by the advisor during the term of the Consulting Agreement, and any investors introduced to the Company by the advisor that results in an investment in the Company during the term of the Consulting Agreement. The Company recorded the payment of the retainer as a prepaid expense in the Company’s consolidated balance sheet, and is amortizing the retainer payment over the two-year life of the Consulting Agreement, as a result of which the Company recorded charges to operations of $2,294 and $2,294 during the three months ended March 31, 2020 and 2019, respectively. As of March 31, 2020, the prepaid consulting fee had been fully amortized. At December 31, 2019, the unamortized balance of the retainer payment was $9,174, all of which was classified as a current asset in the Company’s consolidated balance sheet at such date.

 

Effective August 20, 2018 (the “Effective Date”), the Company and Moffitt entered into an Exclusive License Agreement (the “License Agreement”). Pursuant to the License Agreement, Moffitt granted the Company an exclusive license under certain patents owned by Moffitt (the “Licensed Patents”) relating to the treatment of MDS and a non-exclusive license under inventions, concepts, processes, information, data, know-how, research results, clinical data, and the like (other than the Licensed Patents) necessary or useful for the practice of any claim under the Licensed Patents or the use, development, manufacture or sale of any product for the treatment of MDS which would otherwise infringe a valid claim under the Licensed Patents. The Company was obligated to pay Moffitt a non-refundable license issue fee of $25,000 after the first patient is entered into a Phase 1b/2 clinical trial to be managed and conducted by Moffitt. The clinical trial began in April 2019 and the first patient was entered into the clinical trial in July 2019. The clinical trial is expected to be completed over a period of two years, with final analysis and reporting expected within three years. The Company is also obligated to pay Moffitt an annual license maintenance fee of $25,000 commencing on the first anniversary of the Effective Date and every anniversary thereafter until the Company commences payment of minimum royalty payments. The Company has also agreed to pay non-refundable milestone payments to Moffitt, which cannot be credited against earned royalties payable by the Company, based on reaching various clinical and commercial milestones aggregating $1,897,000, subject to reduction by 40% under certain circumstances relating to the status of Valid Claims, as such term is defined in the License Agreement. During the three months ended March 31, 2020 and 2019, the Company recorded charges to operations of $6,165 and $15,274, respectively, in connection with its obligations under the License Agreement. As of March 31, 2020, no milestones had yet been attained.

 

The Company will be obligated to pay Moffitt earned royalties of 4% on worldwide cumulative net sales of royalty-bearing products, subject to reduction to 2% under certain circumstances, on a quarterly basis, with a minimum royalty payment of $50,000 in the first four years after sales commence, and $100,000 in year five and each year thereafter, subject to reduction by 40% under certain circumstances relating to the status of Valid Claims, as such term is defined in the License Agreement. The Company’s obligation to pay earned royalties under the License Agreement commences on the date of the first sale of a royalty-bearing product, and shall automatically expire on a country-by-country basis on the date on which the last valid claim of the Licensed Patents expires, lapses or is declared invalid, and the obligation to pay any earned royalties under the License Agreement shall terminate on the date on which the last valid claim of the Licensed Patents expires, lapses, or is declared to be invalid in all countries.

 

Other Significant Agreements and Contracts

 

On December 24, 2013, the Company entered into an agreement with NDA Consulting Corp. (“NDA”) for consultation and advice in the field of oncology research and drug development. As part of the agreement, NDA also agreed to cause its president, Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff, M.D., to become a member of the Company’s Scientific Advisory Committee. The term of the agreement was for one year and provided for a quarterly cash fee of $4,000. The agreement has been automatically renewed for additional one-year terms on its anniversary date since 2014. Consulting and advisory fees charged to operations pursuant to this agreement for the three months ended March 31, 2020 and 2019 were $4,000 and $4,000, respectively, which were included in research and development costs in the consolidated statements of operations.

 

Effective September 14, 2015, the Company entered into a Collaboration Agreement with BioPharmaWorks, pursuant to which the Company engaged BioPharmaWorks to perform certain services for the Company. Those services included, among other things: (a) assisting the Company to (i) commercialize its products and strengthen its patent portfolio, (ii) identify large pharmaceutical companies with potential interest in the Company’s product pipeline, and (iii) prepare and deliver presentations concerning the Company’s products; (b) at the request of the Board of Directors, serving as backup management for up to three months should the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and scientific leader be temporarily unable to carry out his duties; (c) being available for consultation in drug discovery and development; and (d) identifying providers and overseeing tasks relating to clinical use and commercialization of new compounds.

 

BioPharmaWorks was founded in 2015 by former Pfizer scientists with extensive multi-disciplinary research and development and drug development experience. The Collaboration Agreement was for an initial term of two years and automatically renews for subsequent annual periods unless terminated by a party not less than 60 days prior to the expiration of the applicable period. In connection with the Collaboration Agreement, the Company agreed to pay BioPharmaWorks a monthly fee of $10,000, subject to the right of the Company to pay a negotiated hourly rate in lieu of the monthly payment and agreed to issue to BioPharmaWorks certain equity-based compensation. In November 2016, it was mutually agreed to suspend services and payments under the Collaboration Agreement, without extending its term, for the period from November 1, 2016 through March 31, 2017. The Collaboration Agreement resumed as scheduled on April 1, 2017. In April 2018, it was again mutually agreed to suspend services and payments under the Collaboration Agreement, without extending its term, for the period from February 1, 2018 through the September 13, 2019 anniversary date. In February 2019, the Company and BioPharmaWorks subsequently agreed to resume the Collaboration Agreement effective March 1, 2019, and the Collaboration Agreement is currently in effect. The Company recorded charges to operations pursuant to this Collaboration Agreement for the three months ended March 31, 2020 and 2019 of $30,000 and $10,000, respectively, which were included in research and development costs in the consolidated statements of operations.