Cash-strapped Genta slashes staff in restructuring

A cash-strapped Genta announced this morning that a late-stage trial for Genasense failed to show a statistically significant benefit for the co-primary endpoint of progression-free survival, or for secondary endpoints of overall response or disease-control for advanced melanoma, forcing the company to slash close to a third of its staff as it hustles to cut costs and raise new funds.

Genta CEO Raymond Warrell announced the layoffs, saying that the company is shifting its focus to other products. Genta raised nearly $13 million in the third quarter, but its stock was trading at 21 cents this morning. The developer says that the restructuring will leave the company with enough cash to operate into the second quarter of next year. Genta reported at the end of last month that its Phase III Genasense trial had failed to hit its endpoint for progression-free survival for melanoma patients.

"If the survival analysis from AGENDA yields a promising result, we retain a near-term approval opportunity," says Warrell. "By redirecting other Genasense expenses, and pending adequacy of continued funding, Genta plans to accelerate progress on our pipeline products, with a particular focus on tesetaxel in advanced cancer and oral gallium compounds for accelerated bone loss."

- here's Genta's release on the trial data
- check out the restructuring release
- read the story from Dow Jones