Fortress Biotech Announces Cyprium Therapeutics’ CUTX-101 (Copper Histidinate) Granted FDA Fast Track Designation for Treatment of Classic Menkes Disease
Fortress Biotech Announces Cyprium Therapeutics’ CUTX-101 (Copper Histidinate) Granted FDA Fast Track Designation
for Treatment of Classic Menkes Disease
New York, NY, July 2, 2018 – Fortress Biotech, Inc. (NASDAQ: FBIO) (“Fortress”), a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to acquiring, developing and commercializing novel pharmaceutical and biotechnology products, today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Fast Track Designation to Cyprium Therapeutics’ (“Cyprium”) Copper Histidinate, also referred to as CUTX-101, for patients diagnosed with classic Menkes disease who have not demonstrated significant clinical progression.
As a subsidiary of Fortress, Cyprium is developing CUTX-101 for Menkes disease under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The CRADA was established in March 2017. Stephen G. Kaler, M.D., Senior Investigator and Head, Section on Translational Neuroscience and former NICHD Clinical Director, leads the Menkes disease research program at NICHD and serves as principal investigator of the CUTX-101 Phase 3 clinical trial.
“We are pleased that the FDA granted Fast Track Designation for Copper Histidinate based on the promising clinical data observed to date,” stated Lung S. Yam, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Cyprium. “Menkes disease is a rare and fatal pediatric disease, and patients with classic Menkes disease currently have no approved therapeutic options. This designation signifies the FDA’s recognition of the significant unmet medical need that Copper Histidinate has potential to address. We appreciate our ongoing discussions with the FDA and look forward to working closely with the agency and Dr. Kaler as we advance the development of Copper Histidinate, which is currently being evaluated in a Phase 3 study.”
The FDA’s Fast Track program facilitates the development of drugs intended to treat serious conditions and that have the potential to address unmet medical needs. A drug program with Fast Track status is afforded greater access to the FDA for the purpose of expediting the drug’s development, review and potential approval. In addition, the Fast Track program allows for eligibility for Accelerated Approval and Priority Review, if relevant criteria are met, as well as for Rolling Review, which means that a drug company can submit completed sections of its New Drug Application (NDA) for review by the FDA, rather than waiting until every section of the NDA is completed before the application is submitted for review.
About Menkes Disease and Related Copper Metabolism Disorders
Menkes disease is a rare X-linked recessive pediatric disease caused by gene mutations of copper transporter ATP7A. The minimum birth prevalence for Menkes disease is believed to be 1 in 34,810 males, and potentially as high as 1 in 8,664 live male births, based on recent genome-based ascertainment. Biochemically, Menkes patients have low levels of copper in their blood and brain, as well as abnormal levels of certain neurochemicals. Definitive diagnosis is typically made by sequencing the ATP7A gene. The condition is characterized by distinctive clinical features, including sparse and depigmented hair (“kinky hair”), connective tissue problems, and severe neurological symptoms such as seizures, hypotonia, and failure to thrive. Mortality is high in untreated Menkes disease, with many patients dying before the age of three. Milder versions of ATP7A mutations are associated with other conditions, including Occipital Horn Syndrome and ATP7A-related Distal Motor Neuropathy. Currently, there is no FDA-approved treatment for Menkes disease and its variants.
About CUTX-101 (Copper Histidinate)
CUTX-101 is in clinical development to treat patients with Menkes disease by replenishing Copper Histidinate, restoring copper homeostasis, and maintaining serum copper levels in the normal age appropriate range. CUTX-101 is a subcutaneous injectable formulation of Copper Histidinate manufactured under current good manufacturing practice (“cGMP”) that is intended to improve tolerability due to physiological pH and to bypass the oral absorption of copper, which is impaired in patients with Menkes disease. In a Phase 1/2 clinical trial conducted by Stephen G. Kaler, M.D., M.P.H., at the National Institutes of Health (“NIH”), early treatment of patients with Menkes disease with CUTX-101 led to an improvement in neurodevelopmental outcomes and survival. A Phase 3 trial of CUTX-101 in patients with Menkes disease also led by Dr. Kaler has completed enrollment. A Cyprium-sponsored expanded access protocol for Menkes disease patients is ongoing.
About Cyprium Therapeutics
Cyprium Therapeutics, Inc. (“Cyprium”) is focused on the development of novel therapies for the treatment of Menkes disease and related copper metabolism disorders. In March 2017, Cyprium entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (“CRADA”) with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (“NICHD”), part of the NIH, to advance the clinical development of CUTX-101 (Copper Histidinate injection) for the treatment of Menkes disease. In addition, Cyprium and NICHD entered into a worldwide, exclusive license agreement to develop and commercialize adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based gene therapy, called AAV-ATP7A, to deliver working copies of the copper transporter that is defective in Menkes patients, and to be used in combination with CUTX-101. CUTX-101 was granted FDA Fast Track and Rare Pediatric Disease Designations, and both CUTX-101 and AAV-ATP7A have received FDA Orphan Drug Designation previously. Cyprium was founded by Fortress Biotech, Inc. (Nasdaq: FBIO) and is based in New York City. For more information, visit www.cypriumtx.com.
About Fortress Biotech
Fortress Biotech, Inc. (“Fortress”) is an innovative biopharmaceutical company that was recently ranked number 10 in Deloitte’s 2019 Technology Fast 500™, an annual ranking of the fastest-growing North American companies in the technology, media, telecommunications, life sciences and energy tech sectors, based on percentage of fiscal year revenue growth over a three-year period. Fortress is focused on acquiring, developing and commercializing high-potential marketed pharmaceutical products and development-stage pharmaceutical product candidates. The company has five marketed prescription pharmaceutical products and over 25 programs in development at Fortress, at its majority-owned and majority-controlled partners and at partners it founded and in which it holds significant minority ownership positions. Such product candidates span six large-market areas, including oncology, rare diseases and gene therapy, which allow it to create value for shareholders. Fortress advances its diversified pipeline through a streamlined operating structure that fosters efficient drug development. The Fortress model is driven by a world-class business development team that is focused on leveraging its significant biopharmaceutical industry expertise to further expand the company’s portfolio of product opportunities. Fortress has established partnerships with some of the world’s leading academic research institutions and biopharmaceutical companies to maximize each opportunity to its full potential, including Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., AstraZeneca, City of Hope, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, InvaGen Pharmaceuticals Inc. (a subsidiary of Cipla Limited), St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Nationwide Children’s Hospital. For more information, visit www.fortressbiotech.com.
This press release may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. As used below and throughout this press release, the words “we”, “us” and “our” may refer to Fortress individually or together with one or more partner companies, as dictated by context. Such statements include, but are not limited to, any statements relating to our growth strategy and product development programs and any other statements that are not historical facts. Forward-looking statements are based on management’s current expectations and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could negatively affect our business, operating results, financial condition and stock price. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those currently anticipated include: risks relating to our growth strategy; our ability to obtain, perform under and maintain financing and strategic agreements and relationships; risks relating to the results of research and development activities; uncertainties relating to preclinical and clinical testing; risks relating to the timing of starting and completing clinical trials; our dependence on third-party suppliers; risks relating to the COVID-19 outbreak and its potential impact on our employees’ and consultants’ ability to complete work in a timely manner and on our ability to obtain additional financing on favorable terms or at all; our ability to attract, integrate and retain key personnel; the early stage of products under development; our need for substantial additional funds; government regulation; patent and intellectual property matters; competition; as well as other risks described in our Securities and Exchange Commission filings. We expressly disclaim any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in our expectations or any changes in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based, except as may be required by law. The information contained herein is intended to be reviewed in its totality, and any stipulations, conditions or provisos that apply to a given piece of information in one part of this press release should be read as applying mutatis mutandis to every other instance of such information appearing herein.
Jaclyn Jaffe and William Begien
Fortress Biotech, Inc.
Lung Yam, M.D., Ph.D.
Cyprium Therapeutics, Inc.
Investor Relations Contact:
LifeSci Advisors, LLC
Media Relations Contact: